Homeopathy for Children: Eczema
Atopic Dermatitis (Eczema) is an allergic condition that makes skin dry and itchy. It often occurs together with other diseases like hay fever, asthma and allergic conjunctivitis. Although eczema may occur at any age, it most often affects children during their first year of life. Dry, scaly and itchy patches usually appear on the scalp and face but they can also spread all over the body. It is not contagious. It is due to an interaction of genetic and environmental factors.
Signs and symptoms include:
· Pink, red or brownish colored patches
· Itching, especially at night. Scratching often causes skin infection.
· Rash that bubbles up, then oozes and weeps fluid
· Thickened, scaly or cracked skin
· Dry skin
· Contact allergens
· Food allergy
· Inhaled allergens
· Irritants, e.g. soaps and detergents
· Some fabrics, e.g. wool
· Cold weather
· Skin infections – Staphyloccocus aureus infection
Although the symptoms of eczema resolve by adolescence in 50% of affected children, the condition can persist into adulthood.
Homeopathic treatment for atopic dermatitis
A treatment of the whole person is the key to regulating atopic dermatitis and preventing relapse. Homeopathic medicines for eczema aim not only to reduce inflammation and relieve itching but also to provide a gentle balance of the immune system thus encouraging the body to do its own healing. Alternative medicine training is varied so be sure to choose a Homeopathic practitioner who has received training from a recognized homeopathic college.
· Arsenicum album – dry and itchy skin with intense burning relieved by applying heat. Chilly, anxious, restless child, prone to skin and respiratory allergies, and digestive disorders with tummy ache, vomiting and/or diarrhea.
· Graphites fits slow, chubby and chilly children with atopic dermatitis on the face, behind the ears or in the skin folds. It is indicated in eczema with superinfection вЂ“ the rash oozes yellowish, honey-like discharge that forms thick crusts.
· Calcarea carbonica – Atopic dermatitis with flare-ups in cold and humid weather. Tendency to recurrent sore throat and middle ear infections, enlarged tonsils and adenoids; constipation.
· Lycopodium – dry scaly patches with intense itching. The child scratches them until they bleed. Pruritus is better with cool air. Lycopodium kid often suffers from cyclic vomiting, tummy aches or chronic constipation. Bossy at home but timid among strangers.
· Sulphur – inflamed patches with severe burning and itching that gets unbearable after bath or when in bed. The intense symptoms provoke constant scratching which leads to development of infection. Sensitive skin prone to rashes and allergies. Conventional drugs or ointments do not bring permanent relief or the rash disappears but the patient starts suffering from respiratory allergies, allergic rhinitis or asthma.
Treatment for atopic dermatitis also requires reduction of exposure to trigger factors and application of emollients (moisturizers) at least 3-4 times per day. A thin layer of virgin coconut oil applied to the areas of eczema softens and removes the scales.