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It's a minor one really but any tips fo getting cream onto eczema without DS getting utterly distraught about it?

(33 Posts)
LadyintheRadiator Mon 20-Dec-10 08:53:55

IT is only his face so not the biggest of deals but I honestly feel so worn out by the weeks and weeks of endless screeching, tantrums, and huge sobbing sessions every time I have to apply cream. I feel sick and tired of it and fed up of being the bad guy. By the way mostly his eczema is mild enough for E45 to be all we need, occasionally it needs Fucidin.

Any tips for helping him to understand? He is 3.2. We tried to show him his face in the mirror and point out the red and dry areas and say the cream will help him. We let him put cream on one of us while we do him. Or encourage him to do it himself. But he still cries, and then I feel worse, as though in his eyes I am making him torture himself

I know it's only eczema and I am glad this is the biggest of our health worries right now but it's getting me down nonetheless.

MoonUnitAlpha Mon 20-Dec-10 08:58:21

Could it be irritating his skin?

LadyintheRadiator Mon 20-Dec-10 09:03:12

I don't know, could it? E45 does seem to help but maybe it stings? do you know of anything else very mild that might help? I have in the past tried calendula cream which also seemed to improve the condition of it but his reaction seems the same whatever we use, and the tears start before I've applied anything.

Green Baby sell a calendula balm as opposed to a cream but I don't know if it's the product or the action or what.

LadyintheRadiator Mon 20-Dec-10 09:05:27

I put some E45 on about 15 minutes ago and the redness is reduced, his skin appears less flaky. IT is a battle with the heating on, I leave bowls of water or wet towels around to try and keep the air moist. It did get infected a few weeks ago and he had to have antibiotics. I know we're lucky it's as contained as it is it just seems so tiring, I feel awful for him.

MoonUnitAlpha Mon 20-Dec-10 09:11:19

I'm not sure, but we were given aqueous cream for ds's eczema at first, but it irritated him and made it worse. We now have some greasy stuff called Hydromol that seems ok.

AxisofEvil Mon 20-Dec-10 09:15:37

Have you tried e45 lotion instead of cream? May go on less painfully as a lighter consistency

Iwasthefourthwiseman Mon 20-Dec-10 09:23:33

Why do you think he is crying about it? Is it painful for him?

LadyintheRadiator Mon 20-Dec-10 09:26:26

Thanks - I have E45 lotion so I'll see if it makes a difference. Sometimes he doesn't cry much afterwards (like now tbh but Cbeebies is on) - and other times he cries so much most of it comes off and then needs to go on again

I'll look at Hydromol too, I was wondering if something greasier might be better as not need applying so often? I have no idea, I told the GP I was putting E45 on 5 ish times a day and she said that was good.

Bit new to this, previously DS's eczema has only ever really flared up when teething (and then quickly calmed down again), but it's been hanging around for a few months now and he has all his baby teeth!

TheChewyToffeeMum Mon 20-Dec-10 09:27:59

My first guess is also that it might be nipping him. He may be sensitive to one of the ingredients such as lanolin or preservatives. I would suggest trying a very bland ointment instead eg Emulsifying ointment - if he is ok with that then you will know it is the cream not the application that is the problem.
Generally ointments are better than creams or lotions when skin is broken as they contain fewer potential irritants.
The main thing is to find a cream that he will tolerate as the best cream in the world is useless if he won't let you put it on.

LadyintheRadiator Mon 20-Dec-10 09:30:14

I don't know, IWTFWM. Maybe when his skin is partic dry it does feel sore going on? Sometimes I think it is just for attention, but then I feel guilty for thinking that. Sometimes he is FINE with it and occasionally he will even say it tickles, and laugh! But then when I watch him gingerly wiping a tiny bit on himself and crying I think, OFFS I am just ruining his bloody life aren't I. Wish he could understand that we do it because we love him, and fine he might be happy if we left it alone but that would be shit parenting. I hate being the bad guy.

When it became infected he had a cold too - gross I know but to look at his face I didn't know what was flaking skin and what was <boak> dried snot. So I was using E45 on cotton wool to clean it. My god he screamed. That I could understand. Maybe that's made me worry about it more - the crying etc does seem to have gotten worse since then.

LadyintheRadiator Mon 20-Dec-10 09:32:42

So this level of distress is not normal then? By contrast he does not mind sudocrem during nappy changes, sometimes asks for it, says it tickles. But won't let me put sudocrem on his face.

MoonUnitAlpha Mon 20-Dec-10 09:37:24

He face sounds really sore, maybe a grease/ointment type thing wouldn't sting like a cream? We get hydromol on prescription - it's just emulsifying wax and parafin so shouldn't irritate.

Have you been prescribed a hydrocortisone cream? It works wonders on flare ups.

plupervert Mon 20-Dec-10 09:37:35

Poor little thing. I agree with other suggestions about trying different things, particularly as facial skin is different from the rest of the body. Also, the texture of the cream/ointment itself may irritate. We recently made a switch from Doublebase to Aveeno partly for that reason. Aveeno's not cheap, though. We bulk-bought in Sainsbury's series of 1/3 off specials, earlier this year.

I hope you work something out. It is really horrible being the instrument of your child's distress, even though it is absolutely not your fault.

geraldinetheluckygoat Mon 20-Dec-10 09:47:09

LITR you have my sympathies, my DS is like this with creams for his eczema too. Actually he is like it with plasters, toenail cutting, or anything remotely medical, he hates anyone applying anything to his body! He totally flips out.

My ds is nearly six, and is much better now than he used to be, however so there is light at the end of the tunnel. Things that have helped us are:
-giving a choice "will you do it or shall I?"
- Giving the cream to him on cotton wool to put on instead of fingers
-emollient stuff in the bath and using cream to wash with (we use Doublebase from the docs, seems to work really well)
- being very matter of fact about the whole process "yes I know you dont like it but we have to put it on" and trying to not pay too much attention to the screaming.
- bribe with a treat afterwards

exhausting isn't it?

MegBusset Mon 20-Dec-10 09:49:22

E45 is not recommended for eczema as it contains lanolin which many sufferers react to (neither is aqueous cream). I am always amazed how few GPs know this.

Get a specialist emollient such as Doublebase or Cetraben (you might have to try a few to see which works best). Then put it on straight after bath (make sure you use a bath oil such as Oilatum). I find you can usually slap it on while they're watching TV.

MoonUnitAlpha Mon 20-Dec-10 09:51:25

It was the HV that told us to use aqueous - when I went to the GP she was horrified and said they don't recommend it anymore as it does more harm than good.

plupervert Mon 20-Dec-10 09:55:42

Blimey. We started on our emollient odyssey with aqueous cream - GP's recommedndation! Humph.

MoonUnitAlpha Mon 20-Dec-10 09:58:11

I felt so guilty that I'd been slathering my baby in the stuff

MegBusset Mon 20-Dec-10 09:58:23

Most GPs know sod all about eczema. If I had a pound for every post on here saying their GPs had recommended aqueous cream or E45 I would be very rich!

TheChewyToffeeMum Mon 20-Dec-10 09:59:49

I think it is because dermatology is not sexy!
I am a GP and love skin stuff but most of my colleagues think it is boring - probably because the stuff they prescribe doesn't work!

LadyintheRadiator Mon 20-Dec-10 10:02:01

Oh, thank you all for the advice and sympathy. I feel better knowing there is actually something I can do to try and make it better - I was worried about using anything different in case it made it worse but if the E45 itself is doing that... we are a bit snowed in but I will ask my neighbour (with small DC) if she has aqueous or hydrocortisone or anything and get DP to go to a chemist in the week.

Geraldine - funny you say that as I tried to do his toenails last night and you'd have thought I was murdering him, the noise he made. I gave up in the end. I do wonder sometimes about it being a sensory thing?

We did the bribery thing on Saturday, bless his heart, I offered him a jaffa cake and he said yes but he wanted to come and eat it downstairs with the snowman he made on the patio grin

Sometimes when I get him up in the morning, the first thing he says it 'I dont want cream on my face, no thank you, my face is not red' <heart breaks>

whatagradeA Mon 20-Dec-10 10:03:47

I second aveeno and we get it on prescription. Our GP gave it to a friend and she had such success with it that she told me about it for DS's excema/psoriasis (sp?!) It's only occasional but when it starts to flare up the aveeno is magic.

MegBusset Mon 20-Dec-10 10:05:52

Not aqueous cream either! You need a specialist emollient, you can get most OTC as well as on prescription.

plupervert Mon 20-Dec-10 10:07:01

Oops. That should be: "recommendation"

wahwahwah Mon 20-Dec-10 10:07:01

When he is asleep? We use Allegan (sp) cream and it works a treat.

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