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Posts tagged ‘scratching’

4 Ways to Relieve Seborrheic Dermatitis

With winter just around the corner, little patches of itchiness are starting to pop up everywhere.  Cooler climates and harsh temperatures make it difficult to keep skin from breaking out – especially your scalp. Read more

How Scratch Mittens offer relief for eczema in children

By Andrea Thomas (see bio below)

What started off as a tiny red patch of skin on my newborn daughter, turned into a journey of eczema, skin allergies and craziness. It also inspired me to invent the ScratchMeNot Flip Mitten, a solution that would forever change our family’s experience with eczema.

My daughter was only 2 months when eczema began to rear its face. I, like many moms, went to the doctor to figure out what was wrong. I was told it was just “baby skin”; to give it time for the dry, redness to clear up. Well, it didn’t. As a matter of fact, it spread to all of her joints, face and scalp. These are memories I wish I could go back and change; the days of having a screaming and crying child all day and all night that rarely slept and constantly scratched. This was our life for months.

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7 Reasons to Try a Baby to Toddler Sleep Sack

By Kelly Northey (bio below)

From insomnia and restlessness to hair pulling and scratching from eczema or allergies, sleep sacks for toddlers and babies are one of the most simple and effective ways to help your child get great sleep with none of the hassle. Often overlooked, sleep sacks, also known as eczema sleeping bags, provide a safe, secure, and easy-to-use option for any parent who wants to ensure that their child gets deep, healing sleep night after night. They are available in sizes for infants up to toddlers and some even come in expandable sizes to grow with your child. Sleep sacks deliver a whole array of benefits, and we’re going to explore some of them with you today!

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Psoriasis is Much More Than a Skin Disease

We haven’t featured much about psoriasis on our blog to date, but I’d like that to change. The condition is very similar to eczema, both physically and psychologically. so I hope today’s post will be both educational and inspiring for everyone. I love that the Skin Impressions campaign is helping those with chronic skin conditions to feel comfortable in their skin again.

– Jennifer Read more

How To Use Wet Wrap Therapy for Eczema in 6 Easy Steps!

Have you tried wet wrap therapy for eczema? It provides great relief for babies, children, and adults.

Wet wrapping decreases staph bacteria on the skin, reduces redness and inflammation, hydrates the skin, and lessons itching – all of which can lead to more restful sleep for the whole family! And results can usually be seen without the use of medication – all you need is a bath, wet wraps, and a good balm or natural eczema cream.

The info-graphic below shows you just how easy it is. Have you tried this method? It really works. Tell us how you wet wrap eczema!

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Coping with Eczema? Read These Tips for Emotional Health

By Abby Lai (Bio below) 

Eczema was the hardest time of my life. For those who suffer with it (or have a close friend or family member who suffers with it), you’ll probably know that eczema comes with a lot of physical and psychological baggage.

When I was going through my own personal journey with eczema, I dealt with lots of issues, including: low self-esteem, insecurity, frustration, resentment (at myself and others), disappointment, fear, worry, and pain. You’ll probably understand this if you have eczema. The hardest part was that my emotions were constantly; one moment I would be happy, and the next moment I would be worried and frustrated at the state of my skin. Read more

How Quickly They Forget or Choose to Forget the Hard Times

One of things I worry most about with Tristan’s eczema is, will he look back on his toddler years (when his eczema was the worst) with fear in his eyes?

Will he remember the countless nights he spent writhing in itchy agony in his bed as my husband and I took turns holding him and trying to calm his irritated skin and restless mind?

Will he remember his hysterical pleas to skip just one bath or how it felt when the cool bath water burned his broken skin as he screamed and lashed out? Read more

Quilted: A Poem About Living With Atopic Dermatitis

I found this poem at The Online Journal of Community and Person-Centered Dermatology and wanted to share it with you. It so accurately describes our lives, as parents, helping our children cope with atopic dermatitis and severe eczema. If you are an adult suffering from AD or eczema, you surely can relate as well. This poem will show you how hard your parents fought for you, how they tried everything, how they wouldn’t give up on you and a better quality of life, and how much they love and adore you.

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Eczema Awareness Month (USA)

October is eczema awareness month in the United States.  In Canada it will be celebrated in November (more to come on that next month).

In October, $1 from every sale will be donated to National Eczema Association.

So, let’s spread as much eczema awareness as possible in the US in October!  But how? Here are a few ideas:

  • Speak to your child’s school or class to educate them about the myths and truths about eczema.
  • Form a support group in your area, the National Eczema Association can help.
  • Raise funds and donate them to help a family get to National Jewish Hospital’s Atopic Clinic or donate money or time to a local support group.

$1 from every sale will be donated to the National Eczema Association!

An Incredible Experience with National Jewish Hospital’s Atopic Dermatitis Clinic

Nancy, of Real Food, Allergy Free, and I connected via an eczema Facebook group, around the time I was starting The Eczema Company. When I learned that she was heading to National Jewish Hospital with her daughter, I was so excited for her and eager to hear first hand what her experience was like. NJH has such a unique, team approach to atopic dermatitis. I was sure you’d be just as curious as I was about how the hospital’s specialized clinic helps parents and children gain control over their eczema. So, I was thrilled when Nancy agreed to share her story with us. Thank you, Nancy!

-Jennifer

 

An Incredible Experience with National Jewish Hospital’s Atopic Dermatitis Clinic

By Nancy of Real Food, Allergy Free (bio below)

Born just a few days after her due date, Bella was a content and healthy newborn.  At six weeks old her skin turned bright red.  It almost looked raw.  I didn’t rush her to the doctor until it started oozing yellow fluid.  The doctor diagnosed her with infected eczema.

I remember thinking it didn’t look like the eczema my other children had.  My other children had small raised patches of itchy skin.  Bella’s entire body and bald head was bright red and oozing.  But then again, my other children never developed eczema this young nor had it been infected.  We were sent home with oral antibiotics, topical antibiotics and steroids, and a referral to a dermatologist.  That was the beginning of an exhausting five-year battle with the worst case of eczema I had ever seen.

As a newborn, eczema didn’t seem to bother Bella, but as she grew older and developed motor skills, the itching and scratching never seemed to stop.  All of her clothing and sheets were covered in blood stains from the wounds she opened while scratching.  We saw multiple pediatricians, dermatologists, and allergists.  Allergy testing showed she was allergic to egg, dairy, soy and nuts, so we limited her diet accordingly.  We tried every holistic approach we could find including consulting naturopaths, trying the GAPS diet, homeopathy, nutritional supplements and UVB therapy.  I was thankful that these treatments made the days somewhat tolerable, but the nights were unbearable.

Sometime in those first years Bella developed night terrors.  Even before she was able to talk in complete sentences, she would scream “no” and “ow” while tossing and turning like she was in pain.   Because she dug into her skin like a crazed person, my husband or I had to sit with her and do our best to stop her.

The older she grew, the more frequent the night terrors occurred.  It came to the point where there were more night terrors than sleeping.  Two hours of sleep per night became the norm.  We just couldn’t do it anymore.  When Bella was four years old, we asked the pediatrician for something to help her sleep.  After trying herbs and Melatonin, the doctor prescribed Clonodine.  It helped, but she was still having a couple of night terrors per night.  The doctor mentioned the next level of medication he could offer was Prozac.  We were not willing to go there, so we decided to be thankful for what sleep we were now getting.

I HATED that my child was so dependent on medication and yet was still miserable. My pediatrician and my dermatologist both independently recommended I take her to Cincinnati for a therapy that was basically chemotherapy.  I drew the line there.   I would have to be happy with where we were in this battle.  There were no options left.  That is until I joined a Facebook group I saw Jennifer was part of called “eczema parents.”  Everyone there was talking about a two-week program for children with severe eczema at National Jewish Health in Denver.

Bella in her wet wraps at NJH

I cannot explain in words the emotions I felt when hearing about this program.  I saw before and after pictures that blew my mind.  They were helping children live normal lives without extreme medical intervention.  I wanted to hope, but I was so afraid of disappointment.  I had no idea how we would afford a program like this, but I knew we had to give it a shot.

A phone call later I learned that National Jewish has a unique approach.  Every patient is assigned a team of doctors and nurses including an allergist, dietician and psychologist with specialized training in Atopic Dermatitis.  The skin is treated with hydration therapy (wet wraps) while extensive testing is completed to find triggers that cause the eczema to flare.  The child also attends individual therapy and group art therapy, and the parents attend group therapy.  I was thrilled to learn that our team would also include a sleep specialist.

National Jewish Health was a true answer to our prayers!  Through the miracle of wet wraps, Bella’s skin was 99% clear within three days!  You can read a daily log of our experience here.

The rest of the two weeks were spent teaching us how to maintain her new skin and testing and challenging her food allergies.  To my utter and complete amazement she passed all of her food challenges.  Not only did we leave there with new skin, but we left with only one dietary restriction: nuts.

Going into this program, I felt fairly confident that they would help Bella’s eczema and maybe open up her diet a bit, but I had no idea if they could help with the night terrors.  In just a few consultations, the sleep specialist gave me the hope I was looking for.

The sleep specialist explained that night terrors were nothing more than the child getting stuck between stages of sleep.  Night terrors are usually triggered by lack of sleep.  It was normal for kids with severe eczema to wake up from the itching several times per night.  She was sure that once we got the itching under control, the night terrors would go away.  We would no longer need medication.  To my amazement she was right!  Bella started sleeping through the night while we were there.  In the five months since, she has had three or four night terrors, and they were obviously connected to not getting enough sleep (sickness, house guests, etc.).

Should you take your child to National Jewish?  Absolutely!  Can you imagine walking into a hospital where all of the doctors just “get it?”  Everyone from the doctors to the nurses and even the sleep specialist, who isn’t normally part of the team, understood exactly what we were going through, and were confident they could help.  There is no cure for eczema, but the team at National Jewish has come pretty close.  Ourlives were forever changed by the team at National Jewish.  I only wish I had known about it sooner.

Bella is all smiles with her eczema now under control.

 

Bio: Nancy is a home-schooling mom of four beautiful children.  Her youngest struggles with severe eczema.  Nancy is passionate about the real food movement, but is also a real mom with a limited amount of time and money.   Her blog, Real Food, Allergy Free , features fast, frugal and (mostly) healthy allergy-friendly recipes that even “normal” people would enjoy.

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