Our children’s eczema is easily affected by changes in weather. We often think winter is the toughest time of the year for eczema skin because of the dry air, cold temperatures and low humidity, making the skin more susceptible to eczema flare ups. However, summer also plays a role in our children’s eczema, triggering flare ups and severe itching. What changes can we make to better manage our children’s eczema in Summer?
How does Summer affect our children’s eczema?
During warm weather, your child will sweat more to try and regulate their body temperature, causing water loss from your child’s body and drying out their skin. This can break down the skin’s natural barrier, making it harder to keep bacteria and irritants away from the body and increase the risk of infection.
Sweat contains trace amounts of chemicals such as zinc, magnesium, calcium and iron, which may be irritating to the skin. Heat also stimulates the itch reflex, making your child itchier than normal, so it is important to make sure your child is kept in a cool environment and drinking plenty of water to stay hydrated.
To add to the impact of warm weather and eczema, children with eczema have more difficulty regulating heat and allowing it to escape from the surface of the skin. This means that their skin is warmer than others, and warm, hot skin is itchy skin.
How we can help our children’s eczema Summer
- Drink plenty of water
It is important to make sure your child is drinking plenty of water to help keep the body’s core temperature from rising. Also, try to avoid the hottest part of the day to minimise flare ups and have better control of your child’s body temperature. Ice blocks are also a great way to cool down and hydrate your child.
- Eczema Friendly diet
Eczema is an inflammatory skin condition and histamine is released into the body as part of an allergic reaction. A diet rich in foods which have anti-inflammatory and antihistamine properties can help to reduce eczema flare ups. These foods include broccoli, apples, cherries, spinach and kale. Fatty fish contains high levels of Omega-3 fatty acid, which is also a strong anti-inflammatory. It is important to give your child foods with a high-water content such as cucumbers, apples, celery, carrots and pears to help keep their body hydrated.
- Moisturise daily
Be sure to keep your child’s regular moisturiser with you at all times because the moisturiser will act as a barrier on the skin to keep away from unwanted bacteria and prevent infection. The best time to moisturise is within two minutes of taking your little one out of the water while the skin is still damp as this is the optimum time for absorbing moisture into the skin.
- Eczema and swimming
Although chlorine from swimming pools can aggravate your child’s eczema, it can also help to reduce the bacteria which causes infection in eczema skin. You can help lessen the irritation from chlorine by applying moisturiser half an hour before swimming as this will provide a barrier on the skin so it it less affected by chlorine. Try your best to avoid warm water in pools (such as baby wading pools and spas) as warm water can increase the chances of flare ups. A lukewarm shower immediately after the pool followed by moisturising will remove chlorine from the skin, minimising contact and aggravation.
- Regular bathing
Regular bathing in lukewarm water, for about 10 minutes is important in managing eczema because it helps to wash any irritants that may be sitting on the skin’s surface. Make sure to check that the water is not too hot as this can trigger intense itching.
- Stick to daily eczema skincare routine
The most important part of managing your child’s eczema is sticking to their eczema skin care routine to ensure the skin is nourished and hydrated. There are a range of ointments and creams which can be used to give as much moisture as possible against triggers to manage dry skin. Moisturisers and other skin care products for your child’s eczema can be found in our itchy baby co. shop.
This blog post was brought to you and your family with love from Julia and the itchy baby co. team x.
Disclaimer: Information provided is of a general nature only, and you should always consult your medical professional.