At that time my baby was two months old, and I was completely out of my mind when I saw a rash on my baby’s cheeks. First of all, I got scared, because I thought of all the possible terrible scenarios. When your baby is not well, you simply lose the ability of thinking rationally. After the initial shock, I took my son to a paediatrician, who diagnosed that my baby boy has atopic dermatitis, better known as eczema. From one point of view, I could calm down, since it turned out as something treatable and curable. However, after that first conversation that I had with the paediatrician and later with an allergist, I realized that all of us (the whole family) will have to change a lot of our habits to make our home an allergen-free one and help our baby overcome the problem.
It was a bit scary when the doctors told us that atopic dermatitis can be treated, but there is no single cure for this allergic disorder. We had been informed on what we had to do to improve housing conditions for our sweetie and alleviate the condition of our kid. So, the process of changing our living habits started then and we are still doing on it. Trust me, after few months, there were fewer rashes and we all felt much better.
I have to stress out here that the whole procedure of identifying what harms our baby and what eases off eczema was a trial and error one. Due to the fact that the cause of eczema is not easily recognized, you have to be ready for a constant and thorough observation process to eliminate all the features in your home and diet that might seem toxic and allergenic.
Here is what we have done so far.
Changed the diet
When it comes to feeding your baby in the first few months, our baby was mainly breastfed. Luckily, I was able to produce enough milk and the baby reacted well to breastfeeding. Since I had no problems with milk, I was assured that my baby will not have any allergic reactions. However, when eczema appeared, I immediately suspected that I must have done something wrong in my own diet. The truth is that there are many factors and no matter how much you take care of your own diet to make the milk meticulously healthy and beneficial for your baby, it is always possible that allergens are hiding in other areas.
However, I immediately started eating even more peas. Also, olive oil is another highly useful food ingredient that can help decrease the risk of allergy and make the quality of your milk even higher.
In the meantime, we also started giving our son solid food. Instead of buying ready-made food, which is btw only as half-nutritious as homemade baby foods, we started preparing our own food for our kid. The lucky circumstance is that my sister-in-law lives in the countryside and they grow their own food. Since they try to live as healthy as possible, a couple of years ago they started growing their own organic food. That way we do not have to buy all the ingredients in organic food stores, but get a lot of green food from them. Of course, sometimes we also have to visit an organic store. It is true that fruit and vegetables in these stores are a bit more expensive, but you should get ready for that if you want to keep eczema away from your baby. You can always make saving on other things and ensure that your baby has the best food. The problem with non-organic fruit and veggies are the chemicals and pesticides, which cannot be washed out, and they have highly allergenic characteristics.
Started buying anti-allergy clothes
Although my husband and me took great care of our baby’s clothes before the emergence of eczema, meaning that we always bought only cotton clothes, highly comfortable baby shoes and diapers made only by most renowned manufacturers, after eczema has appeared, we have turned completely to natural alternatives. First of all, we switched to cloth diapers, because it turned out that plastic diapers, no matter how pricey or branded they were kept irritating our baby’s skin. Also, now we buy only baby clothes made from organically grown cotton. Here the same problem of chemicals used for treating plants against pests arises and with organic cotton, you minimise such a possibility. Also, these clothes are also a bit more expensive, but again, you will be able to cut expenses on some other sides and save your baby itching and all the rashes that cause it and come as a result of it.
Beside clothes, great care should be taken of shoes, too. Baby’s skin is often in touch with the top part of shoes. If you use shoes made from eco-skin, even if baby’s feet or leg touch the shoes, they will not be irritated.
Switched on a new hygiene and cleaning policy
People who have not experienced problems with baby eczema cannot imagine how many things have to be dealt with in order to make your home free of allergens that cause this painful skin disorder. When we learned that our son is suffering from eczema, we immediately threw away all the old cleaning devices. As a replacement, we opted for more green products and home cleaners based on vinegar, lemon oil or soda. For cleaning bathroom floors and bathroom furniture, we use these homemade mixtures or special anti-allergic cleaning liquids. As mites hiding in rugs, carpets and different cloths might cause allergies, as well, we heard that cleaning with steam is very efficient in exterminating those termites. After a while, we decided to try it and realised all the advantages of domestic steam cleaners in curbing allergens from spreading in our home.
Also, parents whose baby or babies (God forbid) suffer from eczema, have to be very careful about soaps, shampoos and creams they use for their babies. Since the skin of babies who have problems with eczema is usually too dry, you should bathe them only with fat-saturated soaps and shampoos and avoid any scented shampoos and soaps. For laundry, we are using alternatives to commercial washing powder and no softener.
After trying out lots of very expensive creams and oils, we found homemade calendula and St Johns Wort oils very helpful for treating our boys skin.
The battle against eczema is a constant conflict between parents and the baby on one side and aggressive allergens on the other. Since our baby showed the first symptoms of eczema and we started changing some things in our life, the progress we have made is a huge one. Although small rashes appear from time to time, they are way much smaller than they used to be during the first month. We are really satisfied with the results but we know that we have to fight on to keep this allergy under control.
Melissa is a professional blogger, and in her spare time she is engaged in crafting, housekeeping, and organizing family life. For some time now she writes articles with DIY, parenting topics, and practical solutions for simpler and more convenient life. At the moment she is obsessed with eco cleaning, and green ways to maintain her home, and helps other do the same.