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Please help with eczema

1185 Views 21 Replies 16 Participants Last post by  MommyDOK
I have been doing lots of research and have done searches of past threads here at Mothering and my head is spinning.
DD is 18 months old and has had eczema since she was 10 months. I have always been able to keep it under control ( I thought) with a moisturizer but for the last month or so nothing works. It is now getting bad on the backs of her knees and the bend of her arm. I want to try an elimination diet for us (she still nurses) and think I should start with wheat. I keep reading all of these posts that list 10 or so things to eliminate and that is when my brain gets fuzzy....what else is there? What can we eat? I'm assuming that you eliminate one at a time, right? How else then would you know what th etrigger is? She developed eczema around the time she started solids so I feel food is the culprit.
I'm also getting such conflicting info on what I can take or even give her while I still breastfeed. One thing I read says I should take flaxseed oil or evening primerose oil and another place will say not while nursing.
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I am always one to try and figure out why the child has that problem?
Does eczema run in the family?
Do autoimmune diseases run in the family?
Do food allergies run in your family?

What else (other than solids) happened at the age of 9 or 10 months that could have caused the eczema?

Perhaps you should also take a look at this

and this.
Nope....DD is un-vaxed. Starting solids is all I can think of that happened around then.
Flaxseed should not hurt you, nor her. We used it on boiled potatoes in Europe, instead of butter and no one ever thought of not eating it while nursing. It is a food like corn oil or sunflower seed oil.

Evening prime rose is another matter. It is not usually eaten as a food. It is strickly a supplement.
My son (3) also has eczema. The one thing that has given us incredible success is giving him (and my taking some too) cod liver oil. Omega 3 Fatty Acids, baby!

We saw an incredible decrease in his eczema the next day!

You can get flavored types that you just give directly to her, and they don't taste horrible. Just make really sure you shake it well before you give it to her!
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I'm not sure if this comment is even relevant, but I would suggest no dairy.

My son had horrible HORRIBLE eczema and it started around the same age as your dd.

Bless his heart, his little back felt like an alligator. It was always rough. I remember rubbing my hand down it and feeling hundreds of little bumps.

So then I read somewhere that milk aggravated eczema. I completely cut milk out of his diet at around 5 years old. He mostly drinks water. And some orange juice.

Long story short - he now has the softest most supple skin you have ever felt. The eczema literally went away over night. It was amazing. Also, as an aside, the bedwetting almost completely stopped too!
Just wanted to add, it can't hurt to get a RAST allergy test. This will help pin-point some of the allergies. We have had problems with ds#2 and found that he is allergic to eggs, peanuts, milk, corn, dogs, cats and feathers. He also has scored high on a few other items. SO it can help with the elimination. Also check out this site for other names for the common allergins.

Direct Link to other allergin names

Dairy, citrus, eggs, nuts and wheat are all common culprits but it can also be detergent or soap related. Since it started with solids being introduced I'm leaning more towards food. Good luck eliminating things! And yes you do one food at a time for 2 weeks and then intro it back in. If there is no change during that time it may take longer or that might not be the culprit. There are some threads on elimination diet in the good eating forum I think.
I have had exzema for what seems like forever and I find that Eucerin lotion is great on the dry patches, the oils mentioned before and sulfer. You get a homeopathic remedy at the health food store. My homeo doc. said all these things were safe for me and my dd.
I feel your frustration with this one! My dd is 6mths old and she has had eczema since about 2mths of age. I've tried LOTS of different things. I'm on an elimination diet now, no dairy, citrus, wheat,etc. I thought the same thing, "what will I eat?", but there are actually lots of things out there, and most health food stores are more than happy to help you with some shopping or to point you in the direction of an allergy cookbook! I went to the naturopath, and he told me to take evening primrose, and to give my daughter sulphur tablets. I started that about a week and a half ago. One day after I gave her the first tablet, it was gone! The rough patches on her legs, everything, was gone. She went from looking like she had third degree burns on her face, to having soft smooth skin. I kept giving her the sulphurtablets, and last tuesday I got on an airplane to go from OR to Ohio, and the very next day it came back-worse then it's ever been! I'm not sure if it's because my mother failed to tell me there was Miracle Whip(definitly different from my OG diet!) in something we ate that night, or if it's the stress from travelling, or change in environment? I was sooooo excited when I found something that I thought had solved her problem, and then it's back. It can be a very frustrating thing. Does anyone know if I should've stopped giving her the sulphur when it cleard up like that? I called the dr from out here, and he said to double up on the sulphur, I've been doing that for three days now-still really bad! How long does it take if you do eat something that they're allergic to for it to get out of their systems? Sorry I got going with all these questions! Hang in there, I also know someone who's been dealing with this for 5 years and it's definitly frustrating, but you'll find something that works I'm sure of it. When my dd's went away the other day, it made me feel like she have total relief soon enough! I was also curious to know what people have heard of evening primrose oil. I breastfeed and have been taking about 4grms a day. I hadn't had a period since my dd was born and just got one shortly after I started taking that supplement. I wonder if it's increasing estrogen levels or anything like that for my daughter? All I really heard from the dr was that it was good for the skin.
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Originally Posted by Jessica36
Just wanted to add, it can't hurt to get a RAST allergy test. This will help pin-point some of the allergies. We have had problems with ds#2 and found that he is allergic to eggs, peanuts, milk, corn, dogs, cats and feathers. He also has scored high on a few other items. SO it can help with the elimination. Also check out this site for other names for the common allergins.

Direct Link to other allergin names

What is a RAST allergy test? Is that the one I've heard of where they scrape their back, or does it just involve taking blood? I would like to do something(that is as painless as possible) to get some sort of idea of what exactly my dd is allergic to!
RAST, short for Radioallergosorbent test, is where they take some blood and run it against allergins to see what you could be allergic to. I have had 3 different ones done on my ds#2, he is 20 mo now, first was at 17 mo, and he is a trooper. A good nurse won't even make him cry, actually he has never cried. You want to request a CapRAST test which from my understanding is easier/more acurate.

This is actually how we found out that Zach is allergic to Eggs, Nuts, Dairy and corn.

Evening primrose oil reduced my milk supply... I think it increases estrogen but I'm not certain of that. It does reduce hot flashes right? so it must have some hormonal influence I think.

Dr. Mercola recommends epo for babes:

My naturopath has my DS on 1/2 tsp. each of cod liver oil and flax seed oil because she said she sees better results with this regimen. He also gets 1/4 tsp. of quercetin 2x day to reduce histamines.

Definately get some probiotics, both of you. I really believe it's the reason why we are not digesting food properly and therefore "becoming allergic":
My DD(4) has had eczema since she was around 1yo. We have done a lot to keep it under control, and she hasn't had an outbreak in months(knock on wood). We discovered that she is sensitive to citrus(not allergic, just sensitive) so we cut out everything except for tomatoes.
When it was really bad I took her to the ped, it really wasn't any help though. I don't want to be drugging my DD to help her feel comfortable.
Make sure that you are using a moisturizing cream, not just lotion. It is denser and does a better job of keeping the skin moist. During outbreaks, put it on after getting wet in any way, and then throughout the day. DD bathes only occasionally and I only use soap on her very rarely.
Also be aware that open sores like eczema on the skin can lead to secondary infections. My DD developed these pimple-like bumps on several parts of her body. They didn't bother her at all, but the dermo said they weren't treatable(save for burning them off) but that they would go away on their own(they did a few months later). Be careful at other people's homes, public places, swimming pools, etc

Good luck and I hope that you can find some relief for your little one!
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I didn't have time to read all the replies, but here is what we do for excema for our DC...

Our doctor told us to avoid too much sugar & artificial dyes, and to cut out cow's milk. She also advised us to use Cetaphil lotion a lot, and to only do baths when really necesary. We also added yogurt and refridgerated acidophilis (sp?) powder to their diet.

We did all these things, and I think it helped 90%. Then we have the non-steroid cream Elidel we keep just incase we need it. If it does happen, I want to catch it and eliminate it in time before it has a chance to get bad.
Ds has had eczema since he was a few weeks old. Eczema, autoimmune diseases and allergies run in my family.

The biggest culprits we've found are: the pets (airborne), tomatoes, citrus, nuts and soy in his diet.

Good luck. It's an ongoing battle- my ds's is isolated to his wrists, ankles and creases behind his knees and flares up and goes away... before I eliminated soy he had eczema on his face, legs and feet as well.

editd to add- gluten is also a problem, but not sure if it affected the eczema.
DD (3 3/4) suffered from severe eczema at the site of her vaccines. I believe homeopathic Sulphur 30X did the trick (plus Cod Liver Oil and kefir).
My son also had exzema that began at ten months-- it was winter, so I think the dry air really affected him. He is 18 months now too.

I have no idea what caused it, but a cream called Elidel cleared it up instantly.

The only thing that I have changed are: that I no longer use any soap on him, ever. Short, cool baths. I really started cleaning the food off his face-- it wasn't the food IN his body that was triggering it-- it was tomato sauce left on his face!! Cetaphil if I need to really get the stuff of his face and regular water and cloth won't get it.

I also cut out all fragrances-- no lotions, changed the laundry detergent.

I think the real culprit was the dry air in the winter-- next winter we will get a humidifier. Because once it got bad, it just would not heal up without the cream.

He has only had one breakout since, and I cleared it up overnight.

I should mention that we moved when he was 10 months old, so *stress* can trigger it too. But it was also the change in environment and pollutants for us-- we moved to France. Different heating, etc.

It does not have to be a food allergy-- it can be a lot of things. I tried all the elimination diet, etc etc, and that did not work. I used the cream, and just prevented the breakouts. Because once it gets started, it just doesn't heal, and then it is hard to tell what is causing it. Better to start rash-free and move from there!
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My little guy(8 months old)is having a hard time with exzema right now. He has always had it but something is making it a lot worse right now. He has a rough time at night, fussy and scratching his head.
Eczema, autoimmune diseases and allergies run in my family and dh's.

He is exclusively bf because of these issues but on Friday we ended up stuck on top of a mountain for 4 hours and the little ones were soooooo restless. I had some snacks in the car and the older 2 were eating grapes. Baby was crying and trying to get them so I gave him a few little pieces of the inside of a grape. I am sure that is what has caused this flare up.

I will try the oils and probiotics. Thanks!
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Aurora, I'm so sorry your little one is going through that!
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