Eczema is a dry, itchy skin condition that affects 15-20% of children during their early years, normally appearing before their 2nd birthday. Most will grow out of it by the time they reach the teenage years. Eczema cannot be cured, but it can be controlled and eased with various treatments.
What causes it?
Scientists really don't know for sure but it seems to run in families. The different types of eczema are:-
Eczema in children can be very distressing as they find it incredibly hard not to scratch and therefore infect the dry areas.
What Can Be Done?
Dry bandages may also be used, and a technique known as wet wrapping. This is where bandages are soaked in steroid cream and then placed on the affected areas with a dry bandage wrapped on top. This is done to encourage the emollient to soak into the skin.
Homeopathy and complementary medicines can be used as indeed can Chinese herbs. These treatments are not necessarily proved as being successful but may provide comfort.
Nappy rash is common, affecting up to one third of babies, making the skin sore and irritated, sometimes covering the skin in tiny pink or red spots which may be raised raised and very painful. The reason nappy rash occurs, is that the baby's skin is in a constantly warm and airless nappy, and comes in contact with urine or faeces.
Nappy rash is most common in babies aged between nine and twelve months old. The important thing is to assess how serious the nappy rash is and to care for it and treat it accordingly.
If the skin is simply a little red and sore-looking...
If the nappy rash is more painful and your baby is uncomfortable...
Firstly, make sure you follow the guidelines above to ensure you have a good routine when it comes to changing a nappy and cleaning the nappy area. If the nappy rash is more severe it will upset your baby and your doctor will prescribe something that will help.
Keep an eye on progress and if in any doubt, go ot your GP or health visitor.
Yeugh - nits and lice are unpleasant, but don't panic if your children develop an infestation! Lice spread easily between children playing in groups so unfortunately, infestations aren't uncommon. Nits are the eggs that hatch into lice. The first you may hear is by note from your nursery that lice are going round, or of course you may notice your children scratching their heads as they sooth bites from lice. Lice don't fly or jump but they crawl quickly making them difficult to spot. Use a fine comb to see if your child is suffering from nits - a fine comb will help to pull them out and help you to confirm an infestation.
You can buy lice shampoos to treat the critters at any pharmacy. Lice lay eggs which hatch in 7 - 10 days, and then in a further 7 - 10 days, the young lice grow into adults and will start laying their own eggs. To remove them with shampoo, you will need to apply once at the first sign of infestation, and then once more around 7 days later when any existing eggs have hatched - shampoo doesn't treat nits (the eggs), only the lice. Further applications may be required either because the treatment didn't work, or your child may become reinfected from their nursery groups.
You should also wash any items that your child's head has had contact with since the infestation. Wash their bedding to remove lice from that, and wash anything else that their head may have come into contact with in the run up to the infestation.
The whole idea of nits and lice is pretty unpleasant, but it's a fact of growing up, so be aware that your child may get infected, keep a lookout for early signs, and don't panic if your child gets infected. Millions of other children are in the same situation and there are no long term effects.
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