Baby Eczema Keeps Coming Back with a Vengence. Help!

Updated on December 07, 2009
N.F. asks from Reno, NV
38 answers

My baby has pretty severe eczema on her face! the doc told me to use Hydrocortizone for flare ups and keep her skin hydrated all the time. That is what we've been doing, however the day after I stop use of the hydrocortizone she flares up again.. and it's bad! I am going to adjust the soap - or rather stop all together and see what happens. I am already using "free" detergents and such. But I'm wondering if any of you have advice on what to do b/c I don't want to keep using hydrocortizone on the face - even the doc said extended use can cause the skin to thin and it's an issue particularly on the face. Unfortunately he hasn't provided me any other advice on how to keep the eczema at bay though. Thanks!

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M.N.

answers from Los Angeles on

The steroids just mask the problem. She needs coconut oil. Has the CLA of breast milk. Put it on her skin. Has many other properties that will help also. Hope you are breast feeding. No soy. Look up WestonAPriceFoundation.org for answers and research.

1 mom found this helpful
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L.V.

answers from Los Angeles on

Hi,
My son had the same problem as a baby, and luckily he outgrew it at around 1 year old. Before that, I would put Cetaphil lotion and then spread Aquafor or Vaseline on top to keep the lotion on. I did use Cortizone occasionally when it was really bad, but only for up to 3 days in a row. Do you live in a dry place? Another thing that seemed to help was a humidifier in his bedroom.
I hope this helps!

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J.B.

answers from Los Angeles on

ok 1 if you breast feed get her allergy tested (by blood) to see what foods shes allergic to. OR if shes formula fed switch to soy. 2- use aveeno wash (regular adult kind just dont get it in the eyes) for her body. 3- get aveeno lotion and use it 3 times a day over the whole body. 4- aquafor is amazing!!! use it at night on the worse spots. if she itches comer her hands.

fyi- cortizone shouldnt be used for more then 4 days on a child that young and only up to 3 times a day.

i hope this helps.

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J.D.

answers from Los Angeles on

This is just driving me crazy that doctors don't go the next step. Your baby is having reactions to foods probably and most likely will be one or all on this list: dairy, soy, eggs, wheat. You need to also be careful and delay the vaccine schedule for your daughter as well as this is the likely culprit of which your doctor will tell you you are crazy and that vaccines do nothing other than save lives.

My daughter had severe eczema until we removed the foods and started using a safe skin care line, Sensaria Natural Bodycare. This line of products was developed by a scientist who had allergies and sensitivities and is used by everyone. No petroleum, no sodium laurel sulfates, no dyes AND a one-year guarantee.
www.sensaria.com/J.

Check out the book, Healing the New Childhood Epidemics: Autism, ADHD, Asthma, and Allergies: The Groundbreaking Program for the 4-A Disorders, by Dr. Kenneth Bock

The Vaccine Book, by Dr. Robert Sears

What Your Doctor May Not Tell You About Childhood Vaccinations, by Dr. Stephanie Cave

Evidence of Harm, by David Kirby

1 mom found this helpful
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D.F.

answers from Los Angeles on

Hi N.,

A lot of people in my extended family suffer from eczema. The doctors have told them there is no cure, then we found an alternative to all those medications. If you go to my website at http://www.kangenavanti.org/theproblem_atopicdermatitis.html you can read about the problem and them click on "find a solution" and read more. Please email me at [email protected]____.com you leave your phone number, I'll call you, or we can keep emailing each other. Sure hope i can help you too!

D.

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P.A.

answers from Los Angeles on

If you live in the L A area I can send you to someone who cured my sons eczema and he's homeopathic

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N.B.

answers from Los Angeles on

Hello N.,
I have a 22month old girl who has eczema but not as bad as your child. My daughter gets it on legs,stomach and back and it only appears when it is really cold. I still use johnson & johnson head to toe body wash and I use a&d ointment on the dry patches and then I cover her in aveeno lotion and it seems to work.
Good Luck!
-N. B.

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L.C.

answers from Los Angeles on

I've had great luck with Aveeno lotion and bath oil. GOod luck!

S.P.

answers from Los Angeles on

Breast-feeding? Perhaps there's something in __your__ diet that she's sensitive to.

Bottle-feeding?
Perhaps you need to try a different formula.

Does your doc seem competent in other areas?
Is there a pediatric nurse you can speak to?
Doc sounds not especially helpful.

Good luck!!

S.

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P.K.

answers from Las Vegas on

I have plaque psoroisis and the best fix is the tanning bed and fish oil. Both are not exactly kid friendly solutions! Spending a little time outside everyday can make a difference and you can also find a DHA oil on the baby isle at the grocery store. It is indicated for children over one year of age so I would get my pediatrician's opinion. Our ped ok'd it for my son because he has a liver disease that is improved by the oils with omega3. And last but not least....olive oil. I use olive oil as a moisturizer for the impossible areas and it works great. I apply it a couple of times a day. Im sure my son will make fun of me when he is grown because I use olive oil for just about everything....like my grandma and canphopanique!!
(i have no idea how to spell that!!)

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A.A.

answers from San Diego on

Try the Aquaphor ointment, I used it on my newborns cheeks and it really helped. It's very gentle and seems to work for everything.

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K.G.

answers from Los Angeles on

Hi N., Great advice from all the other mommies. There is a high possibilty that your daughter is also or will also suffer from allergies, both seasonal and food-related. Can you take her to an allergist?
What works best for me and my family is taking probiotics daily, taking allergy meds during the "hayfever" months and avoiding wheat and dairy during an especailly bad break-out. We reserve the hydrocortisone for breakouts only as well. Aquaphor, the medicated version, is a good hydrator. There are also various other medications that the allergist can prescribe that are not steroids (one is a sulphur creme - smells nasty but works). Lansinoh is another non-greasy hydrator and really protects the skin. Cetaphil, Eucerin and Aveeno are my best friends. No hot water on the face! With regards to a heightened response after stopping the steroids - that will subside eventually. Get her on another medication and keep those calming cremes on her every minute.
Good luck, K.

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A.F.

answers from St. Cloud on

I agree 100% with the coconut oil suggestion! You can buy extra virgin coconut oil in any health food store. It's solid at a temp of over 74 degrees(melting points vary) but melts in contact with the skin.

Also, eczema is an indication that something is out of balance INSIDE the body. If you are breastfeeding, take dairy and soy out of your diet for a minimum of 2 weeks and see if you see results- and if you are formula feeding then I would put her on a baby probiotic and change formula. Stay away from soy products as they often make eczema MUCH, MUCH worse.

Oh, and with the probiotic, you could use that no matter if you are breast or bottle feeding. We use Udo's Choice infant probiotic. You can purchase it at www.vitacost.com

I hope you find a solution soon!

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C.S.

answers from San Diego on

use aveno body wash it helps a lot

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K.C.

answers from Los Angeles on

I have to agree with the other moms - things she is eating (or getting through breastmilk) can certainly be causing eczema. If you're nursing, you should try eliminating certain things from her diet to determine the cause. Likely culprits: dairy, eggs, nuts, wheat, soy, fish, shellfish (those are the top foods that kids are allergic to). My son's allergist says there is a strong link between eczema and egg allergies, so you may want to start with eggs.

As for treating it, we use Dove Sensitive Skin soap on my son. We've noticed an improvement since switching from J&J. Aquaphor is good to use on an infant's face. Put it on after her bath when her face is still damp. You can also wet her face and use it 1-2 more times throughout the day. It doesn't work as well if you put it on when her skin is dry. Ceravae lotion has also worked well on my son. It's hard to find but I usually can get it at Walgreen's.

K.
http://oc.citymommy.com

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C.B.

answers from Los Angeles on

How typical of a doctor to just suggest cortizone, which simply addresses the symptoms rather than the root cause. Eczema is almost always due to a food allergy or intolerance. You didn't mention if you are breast feeding, but it can often be something you are eating that can cause the eczema. Dairy is a common culprit, but it can be almost anything. I adjusted my diet while breast feeding and my daughter's eczema never returned.

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K.K.

answers from San Diego on

Hello, When my grown daughter developed eczema the doctor advised her to use the hydrocortizone ointment. The ointment stays and protects better than the cream. He also said to then put a good cream over it. I use the hydrocortizone ointment first. I rub it into the effected area and then cover it with Aveeno baby cream (it comes in a big tube). There are two types of the Aveeno baby products. One is cream and the other is lotion. I would use the cream. It is much more effective and stays on longer. This soothes and heals as well as possible. I have eczem on my heels from working on a playground for two hours a day for 13 years. This is the only treatment which relieves me and I have no cracking, peeling, itching or bleeding. I use it everyday even when I see no signs of the eczema.
Good luck with your precious family.
K. K.

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T.A.

answers from Los Angeles on

N.,
I'm so sorry that your precious little girl is suffering. Eczema can be such a difficult problem to deal with.
Several of my friends have found great relief using a lotion called Renew and changing over to other soaps and detergents that don't have strong chemicals in them.
Renew is available through an online wholesale club and is so much safer than the hydrocortisone and such.
Hope your little one is doing better quickly!
T.

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S.C.

answers from Los Angeles on

All that stuff has harsh chemicals that actually make it worse! trust me i know what your going through my 6 month old had very sensitive skin when he was born but after much research i found out it wasnt his skin it was the products that i was using! i switched to these all natural products (really natural not like the ones that say they are and aren't at the stores!) and he doesnt even get a red dot on him anymore! here is the website on the products and they are very affordable that was always my concern www.HealthyForYourFamily.com!
and for your own research this will help you it did me!
http://safecosmetics.org/article.php?id=414

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F.E.

answers from Los Angeles on

Hi N.,

My heart is out for your poor little one, she is itching so badly too. I got rid of my eczema by getting rid of the negative chemicals I used to clean my body, hair, home, clothing, sheets, and towels and found a lotion that is 7 times better then Eucerin. Give me a buzz so I can give you a tour of our on-line co-op store and see if this is worth getting involved. Everything comes with a 60 day empty bottle money back guarantee.

Good Luck, F. Estes ###-###-####

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R.D.

answers from Los Angeles on

You've received great advice from many people!

Both my kids have eczema. Besides the Cetaphil and gentle detergents, we also use Aquaphor. It's great in moisturizing the skin, but it's also a healing ointment. I don't use the hydrocortizone or the steroid cream the doctor prescribed since the Aquaphor helps keep the skin moist. I would only use the prescribed stuff when the eczema gets out of hand (i..e. broken skin - and even then I use it sparingly). I use it as a preventative thing, but also to just keep moisture in the skin. Good luck!

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B.H.

answers from Los Angeles on

As a society who is trained to "go to the doctor" for every "symptom" we rarely take the time to really think about what we are doing. Now I am not belittling your baby's eczema, I am simply stating a fact.

When something "shows on the outside" doctors are quick to give you something to "put on the outside". But please ask your doctor, where does eczema come from? Ask, Does it come from inside or outside? If he responds "it comes from the inside" (which it does by the way) why does he not offer you something for the inside like tips on nutrition? No, he is trained to "put a bandaid" on the problem and prescribe medication (over the counter or not) to "put a bandaid" on it.

N., I urge you to look at what is going on in the inside of both you and baby (if you are breast feeding then you need to look at you as well). Essential fatty acids (Omega 3) are very important (http://naturalcures.com/Natural-Cures/Eczema.aspx).

Dont' get me wrong, doctors have their place, I am happy to let them work their magic when xrays and the such are needed, but when there is a recurring "symptom" I URGE you EDUCATION NOT MEDICATION.

N., this is what I do. I am Family Wellness Coach. If you need anything, please just ask.

B.
Family Wellness Coach

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J.S.

answers from Los Angeles on

You have to figure out what she is allergic to. It doesn't have to be something that is coming in contact with her skin... can also be something that you are eating or she is eating that is bothering her. Could also be the lotions and such... if you are using Johnson and Johnson products drop them immediately. They contain a derivative of pteroleum... just like gasoline. Not good for the skin. My son never had any issues with eczema, but he only has one allergy and I know to avoid it. Good luck! If you can find a holistic practitioner or chiropractor who does the ELISA act test that is your best chance.

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S.T.

answers from Los Angeles on

My son had terrible eczema, but luckily not on his face. We were able to keep him from scratching by having him wear tights and long sleeved turtle necks, and of course used all the topical creams, hydrations, etc, and tried various diet things. For a while, he ate no corn products of any kind. I don't remember that particularly helping. He got a lot of relief swimming in chlorinated water or in the ocean. Now, 40 years later, it will flair up under stress. Our niece had it very badly for years. One thing for her was that she could only wear pure cotton, and it was always washed with special soaps. You will just have to try everything, from diet to environmental triggers and hope you can get some alleviation or that she will outgrow it.

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M.C.

answers from Honolulu on

Good job on eliminating soap for cleaning her skin and switching to natural soaps for her clothes and bedding. Also, have you considered what she is eating? Her little body is trying to get rid of something that it cannot process. My first baby reacted to milk products. When I stopped eating all dairy products (I was exclusively breastfeeding) she was a much happier baby. Google foods that are highly allergenic and stop eating all of them, assuming that you are nursing. When I was trying to figure it out, I think I ate nothing but plain chicken, rice and apples for a week and then added foods back in, one at a time to figure out what the problem was! Keep a diary of what you eat and how your baby reacts the next day and a few days after. That will help you determine what is the culprit so you can keep it away from her! Good luck.

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C.W.

answers from Los Angeles on

Both my kids had eczema...until I eliminated milk from my diet while BF and gave them soy formula when I stopped. They don't have a true allergy, but rather a milk intolerance. You might want to ask your pediatrician. Also try bathing the baby only 2 or 3 days a week. Aquaphor works great, too. Good luck.

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M.Z.

answers from Los Angeles on

All three of my kids have eczema, I found that the California Baby calendula cream works wonders. I don't know if you are breastfeeding but if you are then maybe your daughter is having a reaction to something you are eating. My youngest is sensitive to dairy and soy so I have eliminated that from my diet and her eczema has pretty much cleared up. If that is the case for your daughter you have to get really good at reading all labels since they sneak soy and many forms of dairy into just about everything. My ped said there isn't a test they can do for it but most babies outgrow it by six months. Good luck

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D.K.

answers from Los Angeles on

not sure what other people wrote, but i use California Baby "calendula cream" it's a first aid cream and it's especially good on eczema. you can buy it at target. they have a whole line of soaps and creams for babies. my son had eczema and it kept coming back after we were using the hydracortizone cream,...it looked so painful for my son. someone suggested this california baby product, and since then he's never had another problem,...he's 13 months. check it out!!

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C.S.

answers from Los Angeles on

Hi N.,

I didn't read all of these and i hope things are better by now but, I also had great luck with California Baby calendula cream. You can get a stronger calendula gel by Boiron ( sold at Whole Foods or health foods stores) then put the California Baby calendula cream on top follow that up with "No Petroleum" jelly by Alba, also @ Whole Foods. Do this a few times a day and wash with Cetaphil. This should help. I also used to alternate with California Baby aloe vera cream but it's not as easy to get.

I've heard you can give evening primrose oil as well. Take it yourself if you are breastfeeding.

Good Luck and let us all know what works.

Christie

PS you should also double rinse her laundry even if you are using free and clear detergent.

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C.K.

answers from San Diego on

My son had some eczema on his chin and similar to you, it kept coming back. We had to go to a dermatologist to find out that you can't just stop with hydrocortizone cream, you have to slowly go off of it once the eczema is gone. Try going from twice to once a day, then two days on and one day off, then every other day... Meanwhile keep the area well hydrated. You shouldn't need soap for the face - we have never used soap, only warm water. My son's eczema was pretty persistent and it finally cleared up the best after 2.5 years. I hope this helps! Perhaps a visit to a dermatologist would settle your worries if it remains severe (is it possible it is an allergic reaction?).

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C.F.

answers from Los Angeles on

While there are prescription creams for eczema, I've had good luck w/ Aveeno products on my girls -- both w/ eczema and sensitive skin (one is allergic to sunscreen!). There is a baby eczema formula cream by Aveeno you could try. Unfortunately all babies are different, so test it out in a small area first to make sure she doesn't react badly to it.

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C.S.

answers from Los Angeles on

This is what worked for us: fewer baths (2 or 3 a week and spot cleaning) so his skin didn't dry out, Aquaphor, hydrocortisone, clipping his nails (he'd scratch and make it worse). I didn't find out until later about his allergies, poor guy. I would have watched my diet if I had known - I am sure peanut products, milk, soy, and eggs made him worse while I breastfed. He got a face rash each time I ate salsa so that was an easy no-no for me early on.

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T.C.

answers from San Diego on

dermasmooth works great for my daughter-its oil based, prescription from my doctor

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M.B.

answers from Los Angeles on

Poor thing... my now 9 yr old suffered from eczema from birth thru about 2 yrs.... I too did not want to use the steroids and found tha the AVENO eczema bath works wonders.. I'd put her in the tub and have her soak for about 20 minutes... not in hot water as that only dries the skin out more. but the bath daily along with the AVEENO lotion every couple hours really helps.. My poor baby scratched unitl she bled :( not fun.... she is now eczema free and eats whatever she wants.. even dairy.

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F.W.

answers from Los Angeles on

Get her tested for food allergies ASAP! Same thing with my son, he suffered for the first 8 months of his life until a doc sent us to an allergist. Switched formulas and he was better overnight. If you are breastfeeding, keep a log of your diet and the babys' reaction. Good Luck.Aquafor/Eucerin is a great moisterizer.

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C.C.

answers from Los Angeles on

Hey N.,
I have pretty bad eczema as well, and mine seems to be seasonal. Have you had your child checked for allergies? Once I discovered that I had more outbreaks when the air was dry and windy, I was more careful about what I ate (avoided wheat and dairy). This really seemed to end the problem.

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V.M.

answers from Los Angeles on

My child’s eczema was cured by a homeopath. I never had to go through a misery (expense, possible frustration and danger) of doctors, lotions, creams and diets. This is not to say I feed them junk, but when a diet and lifestyle is reasonable, the body should be able to adjust.
Good Luck
V.

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S.H.

answers from Honolulu on

As Jennifer S. said, eczema can be caused by topical things that come in contact with the skin, OR things that are eaten/ingested or perhaps in your breastmilk etc. that you are eating. You need to find out what triggers it.

For my Mom for example, who has eczema... she gets it whenever she eats Oats (anything with oats, like oatmeal, cereals, or uses things with oatmeal in it, and also citrus things triggers it in her). So she avoids these things, and she does not get flare-ups.

You need to ask the Pediatrician for further advice. Just using hydrocortizone will not get rid of it per say, it will just alleviate the symptoms... but not get rid of the "cause" of it.

Or maybe you can be referred to a Dermatologist for children, for example.

All the best,
Susan

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