*Disclaimer* - I am not a medical professional and everyone should seek medical advice before diagnosing or treating eczema or any other medical conditions.
If you're reading this, the chances are you either have a little one who is suffering from eczema or know a child who is.
When my son was about three months old, I noticed that his brand new skin was starting to look a bit sore in places behind his knees, on his face and arms.
After going to the doctor and being prescribed a steroid cream that a) seemed too strong for a teeny tiny baby and b) you could only use for a week so the problem soon came back, I quickly became frustrated and unhappy for my poor baby that I couldn't find a quick solution.
I was extremely lucky to find a healthcare professional at one of my local baby clinics who recommended a cream and was able to prescribe a rolling prescription for me there and then. After listening to her advice and using the cream regularly, my son's eczema is now non existent.
So here's what I did:-
1) I didn't bath my son every day. This is a common one but still at 20 months old, I bath Alfie every other day.
2) Child's Farm Bubble Bath and Shampoo is a winner! Boots regularly have good offers on buying both and they smell amazing!
3) I removed the fabric conditioner from our washing and used a simple non bio tablet. This included washing clothes for the whole family just in case Alfie rubbed his skin against our clothes which could make his eczema worse.
4) After eating, I would wash Alfie's face with a clean freshly washed flannel with lukewarm water instead of using a wet wipe.
5) I encouraged lots of nappy free time to let his skin breathe, especially in hot weather.
6) We actually didn't avoid swimming. I was determined not to let a skin condition ruin Alfie's fun and I started swimming with him when he was five months old every week. He wore a t-shirt in the pool to start with but that was more to stop him from getting cold. Once we got out of the pool we would have a quick rinse under the shower but not use any shower gel or shampoo. Then I would dry him thoroughly and apply his prescribed cream all over him before bathing him later that evening.
7) I stopped using talcum/baby powder. The old school talc' went out the door as soon as I found out that it dries out the natural oils in the skin and could make the eczema worse.
8) I committed to a healthy diet. I tried my best to eat healthily and take vitamins while breastfeeding and then when Alfie could eat solids, his diet was always healthy. He still doesn't have chocolate or anything high in sugar other than fruit.
9) A top tip that I still find useful is that delicate teddies can be washed in a pillow case in the washing machine! I found that washing the favourite teddies Alfie slept with all the time helped a lot.
10) And the name of the cream?... Aquamax! You can get this for free on a prescription or over the counter at your nearest pharmacy at a cost of between £5 and £7 and it comes in a tub of 500g or handy travel tube which is perfect for popping in your changing bag.
At it's worst, we applied the cream twice a day - three times a day if we took Alfie swimming. Then as the eczema began to diminish we began to use it less and less. We've now only recently stopped using Aquamax altogether and we're proud to say Alfie has been eczema free for about six months now.
I understand that there are so many different lotions and potions out there that other parents swear by and my blog is technically no different. However, I've found that relying on just a cream won't beat it completely and it's very much a lifestyle change too. These tips are a preventative as well as a cure.
I can't guarantee that the above points will work for everyone and I'm not a doctor so I don't know the science behind it but these worked for us and I really hope they work for you too.