We got our unfortunate introduction to baby eczema two weeks before Liam turned three months. In the short time we’ve had a baby, we’ve encountered many obstacles, but this by far was the most frustrating and heartbreaking. At the climax of his first eczema flare up, I found emotional days, nights spent crying (me, not him), and steroidal cream usage (against my will). Today, as I write this, my angel boy is napping in his swing without any discomfort. Finally.
To start off, dry skin does not mean eczema, but eczema does mean dry skin and raw skin and itchy skin. When Liam’s pediatrician first told us that he had eczema, I did not think much of it. All babies have eczema, right? Wrong! Babies have dry skin. Only ten to twenty percent of infants have atopic dermatitis (fancy way of saying eczema).
The pediatrician also told us that he would live with Eczema until he reached puberty. Then I realized this was a real thing, but I still did not worry. A little lotion, I thought, would fix the problem.
We got home that day with a prescription for an antifungal cream, a prescription for a corticosteroid, a suggestion to use Benadryl, and a big tube of Aveeno moisturizer for eczema.
I did not want to use the prescription creams. I fear chemicals and adverse reactions, so instead, I lathered Liam with the Aveeno moisturizer. The next day, his skin was RED, irritated, and inflamed. His armpits were raw and his face was full of scratches. I broke down. I could not bear to see my baby like this. He was obviously uncomfortable and not as happy as he usually was.
My husband and I were so distraught and overwhelmed. We were thankful that Liam was an otherwise healthy baby but we were also saddened by his condition and yearning for a resolution.
That night, against my will, but for his comfort, we gave him 1ml of Benadryl. He drank his formula and went to sleep. The next morning he woke up alert and bubbly. His skin was not inflamed and the irritation had gone down. I was relieved, but we still had long ways to go. Then I left for work, twelve hours later, I returned and I started our night time routine.
Out of nowhere, Liam started crying. This was a first. It was my first experience with inconsolable crying. It lasted one hour and a half. In that hour and a half, I changed his diaper, I bathed him, I rocked him, I burped him, I fed him, I burped him so more, I changed him into looser fitting clothes, I hugged him, I cried, and I gave in.
Related : The Period Of Purple Crying
I applied the antifungal cream to the affected areas a.k.a. all over his body and I applied the corticosteroid on his armpits as that was the worse of the affected areas. A few minutes later, I swaddled him and rocked him to sleep. My sweet baby boy was no longer crying and he was resting.
I went to sleep too and I prayed harder than I ever have.
Today, as I write this, on his third month, Liam woke up with an almost fully clear skin and a gummy smile.
The prescription creams obviously worked and I blame myself for denying him the comfort of healed skin. It was my fears that kept me from applying the medication and had I done it sooner, we could have avoided all this suffering, but I am resilient, and I learn from all my experiences.
The medication is there and we will use it again when he has another flare-up. I, however, will do all I can to prevent his flare-ups. I will read all the articles and the books to learn about this condition and to prevent it from happening, but when it does happen, I know that we have the tools necessary to overcome it.
If your baby suffers from eczema and you have any tips for me or you want to talk, do not hesitate, we are here to support each other and grow a community. My best wishes and blessings to you and your little one/s.