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Whether the weather is hot or cold, parents of children with eczema get hot under the collar. Being a parent of a child or baby with eczema can be worrying, exhausting and emotionally draining, topped off with the incessant feelings of guilt, frustration and helplessness.

Research* for Oilatum Junior shows that 15% of mums are frustrated that eczema dictates everything they do and 33% said that although they do their best to keep on top of their child’s eczema, they wish they could do better. With National Eczema Week from (13th to 21st September), parenting coach and author, Sue Atkins, has some tips on how parents can cope with their children’s eczema positively.

1. Relax - it is quite normal for a parent to perhaps feel angry, embarrassed and worried that other people are judging them because of their child’s skin condition, but it is important to remember that eczema is not the fault of a parent. Relax and take some deep breaths at difficult or challenging times, and focus on the love felt for the child - get a picture in mind of them happy and smiling and think of a time they have had fun. Because eczema is so unpredictable, and coping with it can stir up a whole range of emotions, parents need to relax and be positive around their children who, in turn, need their parents to be grounded and calm.

2. Focus – focus on all the great things about the child – are they sporty, helpful, funny, kind, musical, artistic, great with their hands, or patient - whatever is special, unique and great about them. A child’s skin condition is not all or who they are.

3. Share – parents are not alone if they feel overwhelmed and weighed down with the uncontrollable itch and scratch eczema cycle, plus are exhausted from fighting the flare-ups and tantrums. There are plenty of other parents in the same boat and many of them share similar concerns and fears when it comes to dealing with eczema. It is a good idea to find a support group to share feelings and feel that there are others out there in the same situation. Sharing thoughts with a health visitor or doctor can also help if things get too overwhelming.

4. Talk – the child’s school can help. Talk to the child’s teacher and help the child feel supported and nurtured. Many teachers use the PSHE (Personal, Social and Health Education) lessons in the curriculum to teach other children about eczema which helps alleviate bullying and teasing.

5. Explore - many parents prefer to explore alternative and complementary medicine as a way to alleviate their child’s eczema as they believe that lifestyle, diet and health are strongly related. To find a qualified practitioner go to www.homeopathy-soh.org

6. Control - it is not always easy to keep a child’s eczema under control, but one thing a parent can control is their attitude to it. If they believe it will be a difficult, stressful and demanding time …. it will be…. and if they are prepared, relax and keep the bigger picture in mind, then it can be much easier.

7. Routine - many parents find the routine of treatment tiring and demanding if their young child makes a fuss, but instilling a very simple routine will generate habits in the child which will reap benefits in the end. As the child gets older, try to give them more responsibility for applying their treatment. Children love to feel grown up and independent so make it a game and give them a sticker each time they do it well. It also teaches the child to take responsibility which is great for their self esteem.

8. Celebrate – celebrate successes and find ways to stay positive and in control. Learn to build overall confidence. Don’t dwell on the mistakes, learn from them then forget them. Wake up every morning thinking that it’s a new day. Be positive.

In the National Eczema Society research, 22% of mums said that seeing their child suffer is the worst thing to deal with. Sue Atkins advises: “On a practical note, bathing is very good for eczema. Children with eczema should bath once or even twice a day as this will clean the skin, soothe itching and help prevent infections. Soap and normal bath detergents dry out eczema inflamed skin, so it is important to add a bath emollient as this will cleanse the skin and stop it from drying out. After bathing pat the skin dry gently with a soft towel and apply a layer of emollient cream to lock in the moisture.

“Realise that it is virtually impossible to stop your child from scratching. So, the simplest thing is to keep their finger nails trimmed regularly, encourage your child to wash their hands regularly to ward off infection, and pop some cotton mittens on a sleeping baby.”

Sue has created an eczema diary (available on her website) that helps parents identify triggers to a flare-up or to their child’s frustration. Keeping track of these triggers will help find new and better ways to manage the condition.

“It is important to remember that, with the right treatment regime and diet, the eczema will get better and life will improve for you, your child and the whole family. I always encourage parents to remember to focus on that vision before falling asleep at night to keep them motivated, confident and positive so that they wake up more upbeat the next day,” concludes Sue Atkins.

ENDS

Contact details:

Lindsey Collumbell, Bojangle Communications on T: 01372 274975 / M: 0771 7744719 / E: lindsey@bojangle.co.uk
Sue Atkins, Positive Parents Confident Kids on T: 01342 833355 / M: 07740 622769 / E: sue@positive-parents.com

Notes to Editors:

*The results of the research are embargoed until Monday 15th September.

1. Sue Atkins’ is a parenting coach and her company is Positive Parents Confident Kids (www.positive-parents.com), Sue is a former Deputy Head with 22 years teaching experience and is an NLP Master Practitioner and Trainer. Positive Parents works with parents to improve or hone their parenting skills, via one-to-one coaching, workshops and seminars. Sue’s favourite phrase is "because kids don't come with a handbook".

2. To find out what sort of parent you are, take the Positive Parents Confident Kids parenting quiz – it will only take a couple of minutes.

3. For more about Sue’s work and to receive her free monthly newsletter of practical tips and helpful advice for bringing up happy, confident, well-balanced children go to her website: www.positive-parents.com

This press release was distributed by ResponseSource Press Release Wire on behalf of Bojangle Communications in the following categories: Women's Interest & Beauty, Education & Human Resources, for more information visit https://pressreleasewire.responsesource.com/about.