Help Me Soothe My Baby!!!

Updated on August 16, 2008
S.M. asks from Lakin, KS
39 answers

Hello to ALL!!
My little guy will be 9 months in a couple of days, and he has been suffering from eczema basically his whole life. Everytime his doctor prescribes something, it works for a few days (STARTS clearing up) then gets just as bad, or a little worse, after that. I have very sensitive skin, while his father suffers from eczema. I just don't know how to help him. EVERYTHING that goes on his skin is non-irritant, and scent free, as is my fabric detergent. If anyone has any ideas how I can help my little guy, PLEASE let me in on them!! Poor kid can't stop scratching at himself.

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T.W.

answers from Salt Lake City on

Okay, are you anywhere near Tooele? There is a great pediatrician (with an unusual last name that I can't remember right now... something from an Eastern block country) in Tooele that recommends fish oil, flaxseed oil, and borage oil. The only problem is I don't remember which is for ingesting and which is for rubbing on the excema. In the US, few companies have promoted these for treating excema... there's no money in it like there is for drugs. But it's more effective in dealing with the problem than drugs, as well as less potentially harmful. Good luck!

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E.J.

answers from Salt Lake City on

Just a thought - my little niece has had bad eczema for months, and my sis in law tried everything, every cream, ointment, etc. Finally they tried giving her a dose per day of Children's Claritin and it almost immediately cleared it up. good luck!

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E.F.

answers from Casper on

I had a friend that her little boy suffered from this for three years. she finally took him to an allergist and found out he was sensitive to peanut butter.(which he ate three times a day) She took him off of it and he has no more eczema. It may be something else but if you are still trying to get it cleared up in a year, I definitely would consider the allergy road. Good luck,
E.

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M.G.

answers from Denver on

Here is a little secret that not too many people know about. There is a mineral lake in Washington called Soap Lake. The lake has many healing effects, including eczema. My grandma lives there, and I remember when I would go to visit her, there was concentrated bottles of the soap that were sold in the local stores. I just called my grandma (bless her cute little heart) and she is calling the pharmasist to see if they still carry something like that.....So My grandma found that the Inn at Soap Lake carries the soap, and if you want to purchase some, email [email protected]____.com and they will help you. You can also just visit their website to find out more information about the lake and it's healing effects...the website is www.innsoaplake.com and their phone number is ###-###-####

Good luck and let me know if this was helpful!

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D.K.

answers from Denver on

Eczema at his age is usually almost always food related. If you are breast feeding, then find out if it is something you are eating, if he is eating solids maybe find what is causing it from that standpoint.
To clear it up, you have to figure out the cause.
Just creams won't help. Find out if you can have him tested or start eliminating certain things. Most kids with dairy or egg allergies get eczema on their skin.
It stinks as I am pro dairy but that is usually what causes it if he has an allergy.
A change in his diet once you find out what triggers it will be what helps him the most as it will avoid the breakouts.

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N.H.

answers from Missoula on

Hi!
My little girl has eczema as well. I took her to a dermatologist and he recommended detergents/lotions. I have found that All Free& Clear works best for my girl. No fabric sofenters. Even on the bedding, towels, jackets your child uses. I have also used Cetaphil heavy cream every day. But the biggest help has been changes to her diet. I have found that rice milk does not aggravate the eczema like soy milk. My daugher is allergic to cow's milk. Also we did a food panel for allergies. My daughter was also prescribed Protopic which helps with flare ups and when it gets really bad hydrcortisone...Hope this helps.

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M.N.

answers from Denver on

I went through this and I would highly recommend you have a pediatrician take blood work for food allergies. My dd was allergic to the formula and we couldnt get rid of it. I had the blood test done and my daughter was allergic to alot. After we found that out she barely gets it unless she has a reaction to something. I hope this helps and gl.

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N.W.

answers from Denver on

S.,
Just a note I love my family physican and would never switch doctors. I have taken my daughter to a homeopathic doctor to help with her ear infections...the Dr. informed me the food sensativities or allergies and manifest in several different ways. You may want to have his allergies tested and see if he has any sensativities that are making his eczema worse. Once I took my daughter off of cows milk and soy formula, she drinks goats milk, she hasn't had an ear infection in almost 7 months when she was having one every 2 or 3 weeks.

Good luck and don't be afraid to look for answers outside of the Medical feild. Our family physician is very understanding and even started her on a daily allergy medican when spring came because her ears were pink but he knew about her food sensativities even though he didn't diagnose her. After 5 days of taking her allergy med regularly her ears cleared up without antibiotic.

N.

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J.L.

answers from Provo on

Take him to an allergist! My friends baby had this same thing and it turned out he was allergic to dairy, wheat, eggs, peanuts, etc. My kids have allergies to dairy and wheat and I recently tried milk-based formula on my 11 month old and he got bright red patches on his wrists. I immediately took him off and they started to heal all on their own. Give it 2 weeks to see a real change!

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R.L.

answers from Salt Lake City on

My daughter is now 4 1/2 and has suffered extreme eczema since she was 2 weeks old! The time she started on formula. We have since found that hers is mostly due to food allergies to milk, wheat, soy, corn, egg, and peanut, (she is allergic to the proteins in these foods). Also she is allergic to environmental things outside. Everything also is fragrance and detergent free here. Now even under the best of circumstances her skin may be bad anyway because my husbands family has eczema not related to food allergies. Asthma on my side has helped us to produce highly allergic/asthmatic kids (my 15 mo old has the same problems) since asthma, allergies and eczema are all on the same gene. SO...here is some of the advice I have picked up from the professionals: 1)use CREAMS, not lotions 2)slightly warm bath everyday, make sure you put med. on the hot spots first and have the entire skin covered with cream within 3 MINUTES Then I like to seal it all in with Aquaphor 3)when reapplying moisturizing creams during the day, use a spray bottle to get it glistening to lock it in 4)after a bath and cream routine place wet/hot (so he doesn't get chilled) towels around his limbs (then I put plastic grocery bags around them and put on a movie (1/2 hour), save this for when he is older and then re-moisturize (this really works!) 5) the steriods do lose effectiveness so use only when you have to! some good ones to use in between to keep flare ups down are Desonide, Protopic, and Atopiclear. 6)I would suggest getting him allergy tested as soon as he is able, even though they are allergic to soy also, I put my second on a soy formula and is was less severe 7) Use a humidifier as much as possible and get a water softener if possible 8)Eczema is and ONGOING problem, there is no cure, you can only hope he grows out of it, but I don't count on it, then I'm not disappointed! Good Luck

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C.S.

answers from Boise on

I had horrible eczema on my legs. It was painful, itchy and gross. A couple of summers ago, I couldn't even wear shorts, it was so bad. I switched to using Bella Bars (soap alternative) and ReNew lotion from Melaleuca. I only have 'slight' flare ups now when the seasons change (mostly in the fall and spring). The rest of the time, nothing. It's changed my life!

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S.F.

answers from Salt Lake City on

My son had the exact same problem. His eczema got bad around 10 months though. We tried just about everything and it would begin to clear up and then it would go back to the same or worse. This happened until he was a year and half (us taking him to other doctors and getting more and more upset about no answers). Well the short version of the story is he then got hospitalized while his body slowly started shutting down, then they tried some hypoallergenic formula and he started getting better. It ended up being that his eczema was related to food allergies. I'd recommend seeing an allergist and getting him tested. They will most likely have to do a blood test if there is not a clear spot to do it on his back. Good luck.

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T.W.

answers from Salt Lake City on

any chance he's on a dairy based diet? or if you're nursing any chance you have a lot of dairy in your diet? this can be a major cause for skin irritant, i'd check on those two things. change him to soy based (organic) formula if he's a formula baby and if you're nursing, i'd look at your diet and try eliminating dairy and keeping a diary of foods you're cutting out with his responses to that change. it can take up to two weeks if you're making a diet change. good luck. poor little guy.

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K.

answers from Salt Lake City on

All 3 of my kids and myself have had eczema to one degree or another. For us, what helped was cutting out dairy products. I had to cut it all out of my own diet when I was nursing each of them, as well as out of their diets. I've slowly been able to add it back in as they have gotten older. My 5 year old can now eat it with no trouble at all. My girls ( ages almost 4 and almost 2) still flare up if they have too much, but are able to have some. It helped so much- it may be worth a try to find out if it is dairy or another part of your son's diet that is affecting his skin.

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J.N.

answers from Salt Lake City on

My boys both got excema near this age, especially where they drooled. With the first one, we didn't realize what it was till it got infected by scratching it! Here's what the Dr told us to do:
keep him out of water except for a bath (1-2 a week). The rest of the time, wash his face and hands with Cetaphil cleaner which doesn't require water. Rub on, wipe off.
Follow cleaning with Cetaphil or Eucerin cream (I liked the Cetaphil better because it was thick). After bath, put in on all over before his skin is completely dry. Make sure his clothes are soft, not itchy, and allow his skin to breathe(in good weather he could go without clothes for part of the day). Make sure your detergent is completely die and perfume free - all clean and clear or tide free might work. And get rid of the fabric softener, we don't really need it and it can be irritating his skin.
She also prescribe Elidel, a non-steroidal cream specifically for eczema and safe on little ones. Its been 5 years, so I don't know if it is still in use but it worked well.
Finally give it time. Eczema isn't going to clear up over night. You have to be patient and keep using the cetaphil even when it starts to clear up.

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K.M.

answers from Grand Junction on

Hi,
boy can I see myself in your shoes. My son at about 6 mos. had this "dry skin" very itchy. My chiro told me to use nutrogena dry/sensitive skin soap, pat dry and use extremely dry skin lotion while the skin is still moist, the one has no smell and no anything. Put on after bath and before dressing every day. I did and now have to watch what kind of laundry soap and bath soap and etc. to use. It was helpful because when I married the second time my stepson had the same problem and was happy when he moved in with us his clothes didn't make him itch and want to tear them off because of it. He had just turned 16 my son by this time was 8. My daughter didn't have this problem. It was all worth it, when he gets bigger you will have taught him how to find cleaning products that will not irritate him so much or at all.
Good luck and hope you find what will help him not be so miserable.

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M.G.

answers from Denver on

S.,
my oldest boy (now 9) was this way as an infant too. In fact he was deathly allegic to Tide detergent, even the free and clear. It wasn't until about 3 years ago that I got all of the toxins out of my house that I didn't even know were there that it started getting better. We use all Melaleuca products and it has saved us time, money, and most of all the doctors visits. None of the steroid creams work, and I actually found that some of them were linked to a rise in childhood lukemia! Which really scared me. But if you would like some help with what melaleuca is I can get you the information. I do not sell it (melaleuca customers and business builders should never be "selling" the product, we only purchase what we use in our own homes) , but I am a customer and I can refer you to the company- which is the only way to become a customer, but I know it helped us tremendously and that they have a 100% money back guarantee on all of their products for at least 60 days.
Best wishes,
M. Graham

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K.D.

answers from Denver on

I know you got a lot of responses, but I thought I'd share. We tried everything I knew of and a lot of drugs I didn't like. Two things worked. 1) Mangosteen juice. I can recommend reliable, effective brands if you're interested. 2) Baths everyday for 10-15 minutes just before bed. Use Dove or Ivory soap just before getting out (Unscented). Slather on Vanicream. You can ask for it at the pharmacy. At the same time, we also quit using any fabric softener (not as bad as I thought). We have always used All Free and Clear. Everything on #2 was recommended by our doctor at National Jewish. We also do allergy medication now, but nothing for the eczema. Our son went from having such bad eczema that two dermatologists took pictures to get other doctors' opinions to having beautiful, smooth skin. Since starting #2 recommendation we haven't used any eczema cream except when we stayed with family that had a cat, a major allergen for our son. It is possible to not use all the meds. The baths and Vanicream pretty much do it for us. (We don't always get the bath in, but it's a quick fix when we notice problems.) You can do as many as 2 or 3 baths a day until the eczema clears up. Always follow with the Vanicream on wet skin. GL!

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A.F.

answers from Salt Lake City on

I don't know what you're using on him, but with my youngest, when it was really bad, they put her on a hydrocortizone cream for I think two weeks. We had to put it on at least two or three times a day and continue doing it for the entire two weeks. Then we had to give her skin a break for two or three weeks and use something like Aquaphor (non-steroid) for that entire time, and then we did one more stretch of two or three weeks on the coritizone cream. That seemed to do the trick. She was really bad in the winter this past winter (when we did those cream cycles), and once it started getting warmer and a little less dry out in the spring, she's really been pretty good. We only have to use the Aquaphor on a few spots once in a while. It was as if we just needed to get her under control at first, then we could maintain it with the milder stuff (Aquaphor). I'm hoping that she'll always be better during the summer, so at least there's a little break. Anyway... if the doctor hasn't prescribed him any kind of cortizone cream yet, you should ask about it. It's not to be used for long periods of time, but it might do the trick. Good luck. It's hard to see a baby having such a hard time.

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L.W.

answers from Colorado Springs on

Hi S.!

Aveeno is good stuff for soothing. You can also try coconut oil. Go to a natural food store for it. Get the unrefined version (it's not expensive and goes a long, long way). You only need a very little bit. My daughter has had good success with it. I would also suggest investigating the allergy possibility.

Best wishes,
L

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H.M.

answers from Denver on

My daughter has had eczema from about 3 months - and it is hard! You might try taking him to a Pediatric dermatolgist. We took our daughter to one at Children's hospital and what a difference. They were a bit more aggressive then our pediatrican with the ointments they perscribed. Make sure to tell them the itching it out of control - we were perscribed a oral med that helps with itching, as well as taking zertac for awhile to help get it under control. I hate giving my children medication as much as the next one, but after a week or two of that, she barely itches anymore. In the past 6 months since we visited the dermatologist and got it under control, we have only had 2 small breakouts. Let me know if you would like the name of the dr that we saw down there. You might also try ceraphil cream, not lotion, in the meantime. Lotion apparently pulls moisture out of the skin of people with ezcama. Good luck - I no it is hard to see them so uncomfortable!

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A.P.

answers from Denver on

First suggestion:
My oldest son suffered from "minor" eczema and out of the blue I tried JOHNSON'S BABY OIL GEL. Basically over night I noticed improvement and he continues to do well.
Second idea:
I'm a nurse in a family medical clinic and have seen very serious cases of eczema in all ages. The worse case was an infant who looked like a burn victim because of his severe eczema. This little guy looks like a normal toddler today because Mom was instructed to use VASELINE and VASELINE only.
This particular Mom found out that products containing LANOLIN were irritants to his skin.
Anyway...I wish you the best of luck and hope that you find something that helps soothe his skin.

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L.I.

answers from Denver on

try fish oil supplements - i found it really helped my daughter's eczema. nordic naturals has a good product for children that has a citrus taste. if you are breastfeeding still, adding it to your diet can be beneficial as well.

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P.L.

answers from Salt Lake City on

My 2 sons had excema badly when they were young and the only thing I found that worked so well (and has no steroids!) is a product from Mary Kay called "Extra Emollient Night CReam". We just call it "pink" in our house (the product is pinkish in color) and the boys put it on after their baths and by morning the rash is virtually gone! It is amazing stuff...I loved it so much that I became a consultant from this and have it in stock if you would like to try it. It's only $11/tube and I even have clients with excema that call me Dr. P. it is so good for their problem! Try it...reply back and I'll deliver it to you for free!

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S.E.

answers from Great Falls on

My son doesn't have eczema, but his skin will get very dry and bumpy now and again. I talked to our pediatrician and she suggested trying an oatmeal bath - something like Aveeno (or the generic) powder added to their bath water - and letting him "soak" for a while to help with the irritation. And a exposure to sun always seems to help his skin as well. Good luck.

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B.W.

answers from Denver on

S.,
I'm feeling your pain. My daughter has had eczema since she was less than one month old and my son just started getting a breakout. When my daughter was diagnosed, I found out that I've suffered from it as well and didn't know what it was. In my experience, the only thing that worked was Aveeno lotion (I know that sounds funny because it's not a prescription or anything). Both my daughter and I had really bad breakouts and I tried everything and nothing worked. Once I tried Aveeno, it cleared up within 2 days. Good luck and I hope you find something that works. :)
B.

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A.C.

answers from Colorado Springs on

My kids were blessed not to have bad excema, but I have friends whose kids have suffered horribly from it. One girl was told by her doc to bathe her son once a week-she had to spot clean him because it was summer & he was 5 at the time-& soak him in an olive oil/water mix (sorry, I lost touch w/her & I don't know the proportions). The olive oil would help keep his skin moist & ease the itching.
Aveeno lotions work wonderfully too! My doc suggested just the regular Aveeno (Walmart brand works just as well & is far cheaper) when the boys were still a bit damp from their baths-even in Colorado winters, they don't get too dry.
Bag balm is a great moisturizer-I used it on bad diaper rash-but it's kind of greasy & has a smell to it. It clears even bleeding diaper rash up in a few days though.
Aquaphor/Aquafor (not sure which spelling) comes in a tube w/light blue, red, crayon blue writing on it. It's got far less smell to it than the A&D doc recommended for my youngest's facial excema.
I don't know for sure, but maybe natural fabrics (cotton) would help out... less artificial stuff on his baby skin?
Good luck!!

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K.C.

answers from Boise on

I am a 30 year old woman who has lived with eczema my whole life. I have 3 small boys who 2 of the 3 have eczema. All of these people telling you about the home business called melelluca, what a joke. The lady with the stuff in the lake, again a joke. I have been through all of that and I know exactly what you need to do.

There is something that you are doing that he is allergic to. In small children it is alot of the time milk, as it was for me and my little guy right now. If you are breastfeeding cut milk out of your diet completely. If he is on a milk based formula, try soy. I could be wrong, it may not be the milk, but in my experience it has caused lots of issues. My 6 year old had it as a baby horribly, and now it isn't so bad. My babay has always had milk issues and is now 14 months and he is getting better all of the time.

Also, I use Aveeno in the bath with no scent. When you get them out of the bath, you only have 2 minutes to lock in that moisture you just got from the bath. I take them straight downstairs and I lube them up with Aquaphor and I put them in their jammies and just let them be greasy, underneath the jammies. They don't like it much, but you lock that moisture in and the next morning it is like magic.

You have to be very careful with what you wash your clothes in. You may think what you are using is great, because it says its great, but that could be the problem. You should use Dreft without scent on his clothes. If that still irritates him try something else.

Try not to use steroid cream if you can help it, because it thins the skin. If you have spots that are cracking and bleeding, put the cream on right out of the bath first, make sure it is rubbed in good and then lather up the Aquaphor...(you can get it in the pharmacy section of your local store.) I buy it in big tubs for home and then I have a little tube for in the diaper bag.

One more thing...my baby is a digger too and he scratches himself all of the time. I keep his nails very short...I clip them 2 times a week, and that makes a huge difference in the damage he can do to his skin, then he doesn't crack and bleed nearly as bad as if they get long!

Good luck...if you have anymore questions, just email me through this site and I would love to keep trying to help! Just don't waste your time and money on things that people sell at home...I have tried them all and they start out like they may help, but in the end they are all the same....expensive and no good!

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J.P.

answers from Denver on

Eczema is a food allergy....have him tested for allergies. I have a great natural doc that does it non-invasively that I swear saved my now four year old from a life of allergic reactions and rashes if your interested. Otherwise, call national Jewish.

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A.R.

answers from Salt Lake City on

I had Horrible Eczema as a kid and everything iritated it. powdered detergents and especially dryer sheets. put cetifil on his skin (its a mild soap but it softens the skin, don't wash it off) followed right away with eucerin lotion. The cetifil softens the skin and the eucerin heals it. this works wonders for me and I use it on both my little girls. It cleans thier ezcema within a couple of times. Now I use it after every bath to keep the eczema under control good Luck

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J.P.

answers from Salt Lake City on

I have a nephew that suffered from eczema. When he was small, My sister would make sure he had a little sun, which seemed to help, but kids with rashes are usually allegic to something. I would take him to an allery specialist.

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A.M.

answers from Colorado Springs on

There is a lotion from Melaleuca called "Renew". My friend's daughter has exzema and went to the doctor and tried many prescriptions, but this lotion is the only thing that helps. I sell it (really, I am not trying to promote a business or anything) so I can give you some if you want to try it. I feel so bad that a little baby has to go through that! E-mail me at A. <dot> moreno <at> gmail <dot> com if you want me to give you some to try.

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K.J.

answers from Salt Lake City on

i'm not sure what you call it, but i call it utter butter. it's the salve you put on cow's nipples. Also, if nothing works after a few days, maybe you should rotate through the creams and things

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T.C.

answers from Provo on

I've heard that COCONUT OIL is very good for the skin and is a natural moisturizer that actually lets the skin breath. The best kind to buy is organic at a health food store. It may be worth a try.

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C.D.

answers from Billings on

Girl, I know how you feel! I have an 10 month old with excema. My husband is an allergist so here's how we take care of his skin. Use the steroid ointment on the rough patches (3x daily). Keep him completely "lubed" up - as much as you can. We use white petroleum (vaseline.) Poor guy looks like a grease money. The key is to keep the skin moist because dry skin will encourage the excema. Also, we don't use any fragrances in any of the products. Also, avoid anything that says it's "natural" (meaning uses no chemicals, only vegetable oils.) While as an adult, I love the concept, but I learned the hard way that it can be rough on a baby with excema. We tried to use baby insect repellant that was chemical free. Not a good idea. We've found that can make the excema crazy - especially if your kid may have allergies to foods, trees, other stuff.

Oh, the sun and heat can be agravating to excema so avoid if possible. I use California Baby sunscreen, and my son reacts well to that.

Hope this helps!

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J.M.

answers from Grand Junction on

Sometimes something a little stronger for eczema is the solution. It is for both me and my husband. I have used "Bag Balm" on my eczema since I was little. I've actually seen it in some City Markets. It's slightly medicated so it helps sooth while deeply mosturizing. It was developed for cows' utters. In the winter frequent milking made their teets sore, cracked and dry and it was developed to help with that.

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C.W.

answers from Grand Junction on

This will sound crazy, but try a thing called tattoo goo. You can probably buy it at your local tattoo shop, and it has all kinds of wonderful stuff in it. I heard about it from an artist, and he sells it to a lot of ink-free people because it works.

Bag Balm is also awesome, and very useful for many, many things including mild sun burn, dry cracked feet (mine actually crack and bleed in the winter) and healing cuts after they have started to knit back together. It's frequently used by orthopedic surgeons to keep the incision supple, infection free, and help reduce the risk of scar tissue forming as the site heals. You can get it at just about any pet store, farm & ranch supply, and I have even seen it at Walmart.

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C.S.

answers from Salt Lake City on

I would make sure that what he eats isn't giving him an allergic reaction. My second child had eczema shortly after he was born and still suffers with it. We have a perscription for Elidel ($60 for a big long tube) and that works great, especially when it is used everyday. I think my boy might be allergic to milk, so perhaps it's something that he is eating or drinking.

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J.A.

answers from Provo on

My daughter had really bad eczema too, and her doctor told me to only bathe her 2-3 times a week and not to use the baby shampoo because it really isn't good for their skin. We used Head and Shoulders for sensitive skin. It helped my daughter a lot, and it is now helping my son (who has eczema too) from getting really bad. Also, the best baby lotion ever is the Aveeno Baby Moisture Cream.

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