Trying to identify triggers for DS's eczema...please share your experiences - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 21 Old 12-19-2010, 09:59 PM - Thread Starter
 
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So DS, 10 months, had pretty bad eczema starting around 6 months, but I thought I had finally identified one of the main triggers, almonds and peanuts in my diet. Cut them out and sure enough, skin cleared up beautifully. But the eczema is back again in a serious way on his poor face.  No almonds, peanuts or other nuts in my diet (nor his) and I'm not sure what else is causing this.  Clear, beautiful skin for about 2 months until the first of November and now it's a constant problem. 

 

My questions are:

What foods cause eczema to flair for your DC?

How soon after ingesting the problem food(or thru mama's milk) did you see a "new" patch of eczema?

 

Part of my problem in identifying the trigger(s) is not knowing how quickly he will have a reaction after the problem food is ingested. 

Many people around me blame the eczema on the cold weather, but I'm skeptical and am leaning towards the food-based causes.

 

Your wisdom is appreciated!

 

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#2 of 21 Old 12-19-2010, 11:08 PM
 
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My ds1 developed eczema on the inside of his elbows, backs of his knees, and eventually on his torso when he was almost three. It is seasonal - arrives in October and leaves in May. We tried elimination diets - nothing changed. We tried everything short of steroid-based cream - no change at all. Now, we have taken him to a classical homeopath and his skin has markedly improved over the course of two weeks. It's gone from his torso and his knees look significantly better. The homeopath explained that eczema is just the symptom of something else wrong inside the body. If you squash the eczema (i.e. via steroids) it will manifest in another way (usually asthma, he said). Homeopathy treats a person's constitution instead of the individual symptoms - creating strength in the body so that it can heal itself. Just my experience and we're not done yet but the improvement I've seen in the past few weeks has made me a believer.


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#3 of 21 Old 12-20-2010, 08:12 AM
 
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Here is our experience. DS developed eczema around 4-5 mos. His face/cheeks were particularly bad - itchy (even before 4 mos - the itchy cheeks went back to about 2 mos.), rashy, red, bubbly, then oozing. I had already eliminated dairy from my diet at about 4 mos.

 

At 9 mos, he had a blood draw for a RAST test, as the all-over body eczema had gotten worse and was quite itchy, sleeping w/ socks on his hands, etc. He came up positive for wheat, egg, peanut. Once I eliminated those from my diet, his cheeks got about 80% better. He still had itchy eczema, but the oozing and bloodiness was gone. I know he was reacting to other foods, but getting those "big ones" out of our diets helped a LOT and it was a great starting place.

 

(I tried a rotation diet and tried to do food/symptom journaling, but I wasn't very good at it.)


DS, 10/07. Allergies: peanut, egg, wheat. We've added dairy back in. And taken it back out again. It causes sandpaper skin with itchy patches and thrashing during sleep. Due w/ #2 late April, 2012.

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#4 of 21 Old 12-20-2010, 12:42 PM
 
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I'm going to share my experiences, even though we haven't officially figured out much. Then I'm going to go back and read all the other wisdom that could help us!

Quote:
What foods cause eczema to flair for your DC?
For us, the first one we detected (which later tested positive on an IgG test) was sweet potato. In the beginning, that caused major eczema flare ups. Since then, we strongly suspect egg (I've read it's one of the biggest food triggers of eczema), and possibly potato, EDTA (a preservative in some foods and lots of bath products), and maybe amines (a food chemical).
Environmental triggers are detergents, baths, and cold/dry air (possibly others).
Quote:
How soon after ingesting the problem food(or thru mama's milk) did you see a "new" patch of eczema?
I haven't totally figured that out yet. It was about a day for the sweet potato if he ate it. It seemed to be about the next day or so after I ate it too. For egg, it seemed to gradually increase the longer he was eating eggs- there wasn't a huge flare after eating one egg, then skipping them for a bunch of days. It got noticably better within a couple days of stopping eggs.

Also, something we didn't notice until the last month or so (he's had eczema for about a year now) was that it flares up after a bath. I have to assume that it *didn't* flare up before- I'm sure we would have noticed it! Perhaps baths only make it flare up when the eczema is particularly bad? Or, maybe it only affects the eczema on his arms (he just developed eczema on his inner elbows in the last couple months- it was never there before).

A pediatrician I talked to (he studied solely skin diseases in children for a year) said to expect a flare up within 6-10 hours of dc eating the food. He said that a small percentage of kids have foods as a trigger for their eczema. He said that unnatural fibers, environmental irritants, and detergents are more common triggers.

Quote:
Part of my problem in identifying the trigger(s) is not knowing how quickly he will have a reaction after the problem food is ingested.
Yep, that makes it really hard! I'm also trying to figure out what 's causing ds to have mushy poop, and that's a lot easier because I can be pretty sure that it was a food he ate in the previous day or two. With eczema, I don't know whether to look earlier that day, or 5 days ago.
Quote:
Many people around me blame the eczema on the cold weather, but I'm skeptical and am leaning towards the food-based causes.
Ds's eczema on his cheeks definitely flares in cold/dry air. From what I understand, eczema can be triggered by different things at the same time, so even if you figure out that a few foods trigger it, it could also be triggered by detergents, baths, whatever. I have a question posted asking how to decide if you've hit baseline for food triggers- ie, how do you know that you have all the food triggers out, and you only have environmental triggers left.

eta- oh, I forgot to mention that moisturizing seems to be a BIG factor in how fast a flare up gets better. And not all moisturizers are the same for us- vaseline works fantastic on his cheeks, but not great anywhere else. Eucerin is just ok. CJ's BUTTer is ok. The best we've found, much better than the rest, is Dermamed Baby healing cream. It's expensive, but man does it work!

Becky, partner to Teague, SAHM to Keagan (7yo), Jonah (2yo)
 

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#5 of 21 Old 12-20-2010, 01:04 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elisheva View Post

My ds1 developed eczema on the inside of his elbows, backs of his knees, and eventually on his torso when he was almost three. It is seasonal - arrives in October and leaves in May.

Interesting. J's started when he was 5 mos old, in November, I think. After ED'ing for way too long, and no improvement in the eczema (except after removing sweet potato), we started eating a wide variety of foods with no restrictions other than sweet potato. That was the beginning of June (about 1yo). Within a month, he was totally free of eczema. It came back in October, with no intentional change in diet.

Now, for us, it did gradually get worse with eating eggs, and improved noticeably after removing them (I haven't tested egg, so don't know if it's the trigger or a coincidence). BUT perhaps part of his eczema is seasonal (which could be mold related around here- it's so damp all fall/winter/most of spring)- that's definitely something to consider. The more I read, and after talking to the pedi that studied skin problems in children, the more inclined I am to also look for triggers other than food.

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#6 of 21 Old 12-20-2010, 01:55 PM
 
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For DS it is dust mites and salicylates...the latter being a big, big reason we could never pinpoint it...they are in so many foods!


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#7 of 21 Old 12-21-2010, 04:29 AM
 
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My dd's trigger is soy. She is allergic to any form of soy, even soy lecithin (found in chocolate). Her eczema went away in one week when I cut out soy.  I hope that helps. : )

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#8 of 21 Old 12-21-2010, 04:36 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Yes, this is all very helpful. TY ladies. I will keep chcking in.

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#9 of 21 Old 12-23-2010, 01:08 PM
 
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What foods cause eczema to flair for your DC?
cinnamon, eggs, white potatoes

 

How soon after ingesting the problem food(or thru mama's milk) did you see a "new" patch of eczema?

 

the eczema usually appears on the same day that the food was ingested, I'd say 2hrs max after having it. I apply a steroid cream that

the allergist gave us, to it, and give her Benadryl and it clears up pretty fast.

 

She has places on her lower back (the worse eczema area) that even when they're not flared/red, stay rough. She has a confirmed allergy

to all the foods I listed. The worse eczema flare was with the cinnamon. She'd sneaked and eaten a cinnamon muffin. I used to have a picture of

it but my hard drive had to be replaced and I lost it.


 

 

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#10 of 21 Old 12-23-2010, 01:40 PM
 
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DD suddenly developed eczema around 2.5, cutting out dairy got rid of it entirely. If she has any dairy within 24 hours she has patches behind her knees in creases of her elbows, and around her eyes. We also found that cutting out corn got rid of the cradle cap we were still dealing with at age 4.5.


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#11 of 21 Old 12-23-2010, 01:45 PM
 
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We've been dealing with the cradle cap too, with my 18mth old. Recently he tested positive for corn allergies as well as dairy. I'm hoping that cutting all his allergens out clears it up.


 

 

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#12 of 21 Old 12-23-2010, 01:49 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brees_Mama View Post

We've been dealing with the cradle cap too, with my 18mth old. Recently he tested positive for corn allergies as well as dairy. I'm hoping that cutting all his allergens out clears it up.



 Within about a month of being corn free her cradle cap started coming off in clumps, it was rather gross... At the same time we realized that along with resolving the other issues she was having, that it most likely meant that things were clearing up for her. I'm sorry to hear about the corn allergies though, it has been substantially more difficult to deal with than dairy.

 


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#13 of 21 Old 12-23-2010, 03:04 PM
 
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That's wonderful, theres hope yet!

 

 

Thank you, we're on day 2 or 3 so far and man, that stuff is in everything! I'm on the allergy diet with him (my 18mth old) and it's hard but worth it (I'm BFing/getting him on some formula at the same time because he isn't growing)


 

 

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#14 of 21 Old 12-27-2010, 04:12 PM
 
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For us it was dairy.
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#15 of 21 Old 12-29-2010, 03:28 PM
 
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My youngest had bad 'baby acne' which then developed into eczema as well as having cradle cap. I went on the Dr Sears elimination diet, after a week on the diet with no improvement we saw a dermatologist who was shocked at how bad the eczema was and even wanted to prescribe antibiotics. He got a steroid cream and syrup which minimised the severity of the eczema and I continued the ED. Eventually, we saw an allergist and ds2 tested positive on a skin test to egg (major reaction).

 

I've mistakenly eaten egg and the eczema has flared up. His skin is still very rough though. And he has flare ups in hot weather (which we are currently having a lot of).

 eta: the reaction is within a day


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#16 of 21 Old 12-30-2010, 11:11 AM
 
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Ours is soy.  When my son (2yo) eats it, I see a reaction within 1-3 hours.  When I eat it and he ingests it through breastmilk, it could show up the same day or the next day and usually lasts a few days.  For instance, I accidentally had some soy in my dinner a two nights ago and my son's eczema has not yet cleared up.  Also, we have also noticed lately as we have been spending more time outside in the winter air that my son's eczema is worse.  I am hoping it is weather related.

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#17 of 21 Old 01-01-2011, 12:47 PM
 
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For my dd3, her eczema was triggered by dairy and oats. Her cradle cap was better but we were never able to get rid of it until we took wheat out too. Now her skin and scalp are clear and soft.


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#18 of 21 Old 01-01-2011, 01:04 PM
 
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The only cause of DS's eczema that I'm sure of, is something in the carpet, rubbing on the tops of his feet when he crawls. It might be the cats, as he's alergic, but touching them directly does nothing. We use penaten and it heals his skin quickly. Although I know it's only treating the symptom and not the cause, I dunno what else to do.


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#19 of 21 Old 01-03-2011, 09:56 PM
 
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Ds had eczema really bad until he was around 2 yrs. He tested positive for peanut /tree nuts allergy which stumped us because he didn't really eat any nuts. When we removed all the items from our house and even may contain foods he healed 95% and then he had very mild form of dry skin. He still has a little cradle cap but no problems with skin.

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#20 of 21 Old 01-04-2011, 12:05 PM
 
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Well lady's I found this great site and it talks about the chemical in your house it also talks about toxins in your house hold products. They have products that if your childern were to accidentally drink it all you would have to do is give them water and they would be okay. They have all kinds of products like laundary soap, dish soap, cleaning supplies. Since I have changed stores all are alligies are clearing up. 

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#21 of 21 Old 01-06-2011, 01:16 PM
 
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bumping to keep this visible- it's been really helpful!


Becky, partner to Teague, SAHM to Keagan (7yo), Jonah (2yo)
 

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