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Eczema – bathing your child fact sheet

Eczema

Bathing your child

A daily bath in lukewarm water is important for your child’s eczema. Your child should be in the bath
for 10-15 minutes.

We also recommend adding products to the bath to help with their eczema. Add bath oil, such as QV Body Bath Oil, to every bath to clean and moisturise your child’s skin as they bath. Mix it into the water to give a milky appearance. There is no need to rinse the oil off the skin.

To clean the skin

To clean your child’s skin you may use one of the following options:

Aqueous cream: This acts as a cleanser for the skin but will not dry it out like soap will. Lather your child in aqueous cream before bath, and then wash off in bath. Ask for “aqueous cream” at any pharmacy.

Soap-free cleanser: Cleansers, such as QV Body Wash or Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser, clean the skin without leaving it dry like soap does. Rub onto child while in bath.

To treat flared skin

Condy’s Crystals: We recommend adding this to the bath if your child’s eczema is weeping. It is a bacteriostatic agent, which means it can help prevent further growth of bacteria on the skin. It also helps dry out the oozing lesions. Add a small pinch to the bath until the water turns light pink. Be sure all crystals are dissolved before adding child to bath.

or

Bleach and salt: We recommend using White King plain household bleach in the bath for those children who have bouts of infected eczema. Add 12mls for every 10litres of bath water, for example, that would be a half a cup of bleach to 10 household buckets of water. This will kill bacteria but is not harmful to your child – the strength is about one-tenth of that found in public swimming pools. You can add pool salt to the bath to soften the water; add 1/3 of a cup for every 10L of water.

After the bath

Pat your child partially dry – do not rub – then while still moist, apply moisturiser liberally, from head to toe.

Contact us

Lady Cilento Children’s Hospital
501 Stanley Street, South Brisbane
t: 07 3068 1400
t: 07 3068 1111 (general enquiries)
e: DermatologyCN_LCCH@health.qld.gov.au (for non-urgent enquiries)

In an emergency, always call 000.

If it’s not an emergency but you have any concerns, contact 13 Health (13 43 2584). Qualified staff will give you advice on who to talk to and how quickly you should do it. You can phone 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Resource No: FS110. Developed by the Dermatology Service. Updated: August 2016. All information contained in this sheet has been supplied by qualified professionals as a guideline for care only. Seek medical advice, as appropriate, for concerns regarding your child’s health.

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