Eczema (atopic dermatitis)


Eczema is a common skin condition which affects babies, young children and adults. Eczema is commonly found in many forms - from mild to one that causes dreadful itch, disfigurement, discomfort and distress. The most common type of eczema is atopic, which is usually inherited. Baby eczema is seen as patches on the baby's skin, often during their first few months.

Eczema most often occurs on baby's cheeks, and at the joints of their legs and arms. Eczema can be easily confused with cradle cap in babies. But, Cradle cap generally clears up by 8 months, and usually appears mainly on the scalp, eyebrows and eyelids and behind the ears.

Eczema is an immune system reaction that can be triggered by certain soaps, allergies, creams and detergents. It may also be aggravated by sweat, heat and stress. Heredity is a big factor in whether or not an infant gets eczema. If mum or dad has been affected with eczema, the baby is most likely to get infected. If both the parents have the disease, then the baby has 50% chance of getting eczema.

Eczema can be successfully managed by avoiding irritants, allergens and other triggers. Apply moisturizing creams and emollients (such as sorbolene cream) or use medicated preparations, such as steroid-based creams and ointments. If the problem persists and continues, please consult the doctor and seek excellent medical advice and treatment for the disease. If the itch and discomfort leads scratching, weeping , broken skin, disturbed sleep, crusting, infection, or anything like that, seek medical help. These may signs of a secondary skin infection which requires additional treatment.

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