Eczema Management

Discover Health

Integrative Family Medicine & Naturopathic Doctors located in North Beach, San Francisco, CA & San Mateo, CA

Eczema is a common childhood skin problem that affects up to 20% of children worldwide. This chronic condition, which is characterized by red, itchy patches of skin, usually develops during childhood (often before a child’s first birthday). Although eczema can’t be cured, it can be managed. At Discover Health in San Francisco, pediatricians Dr. Oded Herbsman and Dr. Jon-Michael Castelli provide comprehensive care for children with eczema. To learn more, call or book an appointment online at their North Beach area location today.

Eczema Management Q & A

What is eczema?

Eczema, or atopic dermatitis, is a chronic skin condition that usually first appears in early childhood. Babies who develop eczema before their first birthday often get dry, red, scaly patches on their skin. Eczema patches commonly appear on a baby’s cheeks, forehead, and scalp.  

Children who develop eczema after the age of two are more likely to experience it in the form of a rash in the creases of their elbows or knees, or on the skin of their neck, wrists, or ankles.

No matter where it appears, eczema can be very itchy. This itchiness may even be intense enough to disrupt sleep, and it may also cause your child to scratch their skin until it breaks, leaving it prone to infection.

Can eczema be cured?

Eczema is a chronic condition that can be successfully managed, but it cannot be cured.

Approximately half of children with eczema will continue to have it as an adult, but the problem typically becomes milder with age. For some infants with eczema, the condition completely disappears by their second birthday.  

Because eczema can be long-lasting, it’s important to learn how to take care of your child’s skin. Proper treatment and an eczema-friendly skin care routine can alleviate much of your child’s discomfort.

How is eczema managed?

When you bring your child to Dr. Herbsman or Dr. Castelli, they’ll provide a treatment plan designed to help:

  • Control itching
  • Reduce inflammation
  • Clear any infection
  • Loosen and remove lesions
  • Reduce new lesion formation

Eczema management includes a controlled skin regimen that involves bathing and moisturizing your child’s skin. Your pediatrician can tell you how often you should bathe your child and apply moisturizer both when the condition is under control and during flare-ups.

Effective eczema management also includes avoiding any of your child’s known eczema triggers. Although you may not always know what causes your child to have a flare-up, some of the most common eczema triggers include:

  • Stress and sweat
  • Irritating detergents and soaps
  • Dry air and sunburns