How to Heal Infant Eczema

By Christine Rich ; Updated April 18, 2017
Dry skin affects infants, too.
Dry skin affects infants, too.

Infant eczema is characterized by patches of dry skin that are red, itchy and irritated. Babies can lose moisture up to three times faster than adults, particularly when the infant is subjected to extreme differences in temperatures. This can occur in summer, for example, when an infant is moved from air conditioning to hot outdoor temperatures. The solution to infant eczema is simple: Decrease baths and increase lotion.

Stop the daily bath. The bathing process is very drying to an infant's skin. Allow three days between baths to help the skin heal. If the baby gets messy, use a sponge sparingly to clean the soiled places. Bathe the child twice a week using luke warm water and sensitive-skin soap such as Dove, Tone or Alpha Keri. Add a capful of baby oil to the water. Limit the bath to 15 minutes; prolonged submersion in water increases dryness of the skin. Dry the baby with a towel by patting the skin gently, not rubbing the skin.

Prevent allergic skin rashes by only dressing the baby in cotton. Decrease contact with scratchy blankets.

Apply lotion four times a day. Spread the lotion generously across the whole body, not just in the dry patches. Lanolin lotion is particularly therapeutic for infant eczema. NYU Langone Medical Center advises the use of topical creams with chamomile, licorice or calendula.

Follow this regime for five days. If the dry patches are still red and irritated, contact your doctor. It is very important to allow the doctor to observe the irritated skin, as rashes can be indicative of other types of childhood illnesses.

Things You Will Need

  • Lotion
  • Sensitive skin soap
  • Baby oil

Tip

Take a class in infant massage and massage your baby daily. One study conducted by Schachner & Hernandez discovered that when parents massaged their children on a daily basis for four weeks, it significantly decreased eczema symptoms.

Lanolin skin cream can be found in the breastfeeding section of the store. Buy nipple cream for breastfeeding mothers with lanolin.

Warning

If using a lanolin cream, it is oily and can stain the clothing. When removing the baby from the bathwater infused with baby oil, be careful as the baby will be slippery.

About the Author

Christine Rich has been teaching English and writing since 1997, both domestically and internationally. She writes articles on travel, spirituality and wellness, which have been published in "Aquarius" and "Subtle Energies and Energy Medicine." Rich has a Master of Science in counseling from West Carolina University.