Is your child suffering from pediatric eczema?
Those red, scaly patches on your child’s face may seem pretty common for most people. Many of them would think it’s just a typical rash that will go away soon. Little do they know what’s really going on behind those seemingly “harmless” skin rashes.
The unbearable itch that makes your child scratch her skin until it bleeds…
Not to mention those sleepless nights as you try to do everything to comfort your little one…
These are only SOME of the hidden burdens brought about by eczema.
While you seek help from one doctor to another, all they can offer is a temporary relief of the symptoms by prescribing a cortisone ointment. But after stopping this treatment the lesions are quick to flare up again at any time.
Now you turn to the remedy aisle of your local health food store trying a bunch of different remedies, hoping that they will finally give your child a lasting relief. But, let's be honest. Did that happen?
If you’re a parent of a child with eczema, I understand that you’re tired, worried, and even frustrated. Who wouldn’t be?
It’s completely natural that you are desperately seeking solutions, something that can really help your child heal.
However, most of the time, we’re too focused on applying external remedies that we tend to miss out on one important aspect of our child’s health…
And that is DIET and GUT HEALTH.
Why Conventional Medicine can’t help your child with Eczema
Children with eczema are often seen with red, scaly, itchy, and sometimes, oozing rashes that may appear in several areas of their bodies.
For babies, the rash often appears on the scalp and face. For older children, the areas affected can be the skin around the eyes, the creases of their elbows, the back of their knees, and the neck.
While little is known about the cause of eczema, pediatric eczema is often attributed to a mixture of genetic and environmental factors.
Children with eczema often have problems with the production of a special protein called “filaggrin” in the outer portion of their skin.
This protein helps retain the moisture within the skin and acts as a barrier against bacteria and environmental irritants. Since they lack this barrier, these children are more vulnerable to skin dryness, irritation, and infection.
Pediatric Eczema is also often seen with other allergic conditions like asthma and food allergies.
While some children may outgrow this skin condition, many tend to retain eczema up until adulthood.
Through the years, the symptoms of eczema may temporarily disappear, but will tend to flare up when triggered.
Up to this time, there is no known cure for eczema.
Conventional medicine simply manages eczema symptoms through medications, like steroid creams, non-steroid petroleum based lotions, antihistamines, and anti-itch medications, and by avoiding the irritants which may trigger the rash to reappear.
While some of these medications work with varying degrees of success, typically after a variable period of time, eczema flares up again.
The reason why these treatments are failing is because making the rash go away does not resolve the reason why the rash is happening in the first place.
Like all chronic illnesses, eczema is a reflection of a deeper, internal imbalance typically originating from a digestive weakness.
Using cortisone cream to fix eczema is pushing the toxins the body is trying to get rid of back into the body instead of helping the body to release those toxins and not make new ones.
Sure, it makes it look better, and your child may feel better for a short period of time. But ultimately the underlying issues must be healed.
Pediatric Eczema in TCM
While western doctors don't have much to offer when it comes to this condition, alternative medicine does. Through diet and lifestyle changes and possibly a few herbs and supplements, most cases of eczema can completely resolve.
Chinese medicine is a true holistic medicine. Which means that it looks at the whole picture of an illness and addresses all of the involved components.
In TCM, the treatment of eczema is not simply focused on the symptoms, rather, it involves a holistic approach of identifying the root cause and solving the problem as a whole.
Eczema, like most skin conditions, is usually a reflection of an imbalance occurring INSIDE the body. This may be occurring even if you seem otherwise perfectly healthy.
Chinese medicine identifies several key patterns that typically come into play with eczema…
Weak immune system
In babies and young children the immune system is still developing and therefore weak and hypersensitive to food and environmental triggers.
That is why it’s not surprising to hear that eczema usually begins to appear during infancy and early childhood.
The immune system is also unable to respond accordingly to these triggers and often reacts with inflammation in the body.
Some of you might be intrigued how digestive weakness connects to a skin condition such as eczema.
In my opinion, many, if not all illnesses, root from digestive weakness. TCM refers to this weakness as “Spleen Qi deficiency”.
Young children have a weak digestive system by nature because it is still developing.
In fact TCM believes that the gut only achieves its full maturity by the age of 7.
This is why children are vulnerable not only to digestive problems, but also to a number of diseases that have their origin in the gut. Eczema is just one of them.
Other factors that may contribute to their digestive weakness are C-sections, infant formulas, starting them on solid foods too early and the use of antibiotics.
All these can impact the overall health of your child which can manifest in the form of eczema.
Stress definitely is a major contributor in eczema flare ups. In TCM, stress is otherwise known as the “Liver Qi stagnation”.
And YES, kids can be stressed as well, especially if they suffer from eczema!
The longer your child suffers from eczema, the more stressed it will be. But that is probably true for the whole family.
Thus, addressing the root cause of eczema as early as possible helps reduce its long-term impact and eventually, be a good investment to your child’s future health.
Three Guidelines for navigating your child’s eczema as an empowered mom
- Acknowledge that focusing on your child’s rash will NOT resolve the issue.
- Be your child’s Sherlock Holmes and look for the root cause in all areas of life, especially nutrition and environment to resolve internal imbalances.
- Reserve the use of cortisone creams only for instances when your child is so uncomfortable and itchy that it constantly scratches and sleep becomes impossible. Also know that there are very effective herbal ointments and washes that will relieve itching and reduce the skin lesions until the other measures you are taking become effective - from the inside out.
Yours in Health,
xx Bettina ?
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