Blog: Child Health Care
by kidsgainhealth

Mental Health in Children with Eczema

According to research, children with eczema, especially, atopic dermatitis have higher rates of anxiety and depression. A child with eczema is more likely to experience social isolation and bullying at school due to activity restrictions owing to their skin condition.

Date:   11/23/2020 6:31:23 AM   ( 5 mon ) ... viewed 150 times

Living with a constant itch caused by eczema often affects your child’s mood. Children with eczema can be clingy, irritable, restless, and fussy. Some kids learn that scratching their itch can get their parents’ attention, and this can become a habit. However, scratching eczema-prone skin can lead to infection.

              

According to research, children with eczema, especially, atopic dermatitis have higher rates of anxiety and depression. A child with eczema is more likely to experience social isolation and bullying at school due to activity restrictions owing to their skin condition.

Symptoms of Depression in Children

  • Difficulty concentrating

  • Continuous feelings of sadness and hopelessness

  • Irritability or anger

  • Changes in appetite and sleep

  • Social withdrawal

  • Outbursts or crying

  • Low energy, tiredness

It is vital to understand that not all children with eczema have the above-listed symptoms of depression. However, as a parent of you suspect your child is experiencing depression, you should talk to a health care provider or paediatric mental health specialist. Read more about how to build self-confidence in your kid with eczema.

Mood changes, including anxiety and depression, could be due to the side effects of the asthma medication. So, if your child is on medications for asthma, and experiencing symptoms of depression or anxiety, contact a doctor right away. 

Eczema and your child’s behaviour

The symptoms of eczema may go beyond the physical levels by impacting your children’s behaviour. About 30% of children with atopic dermatitis have reported disrupted sleep for five or more nights a week. That can further lead to irritability, daytime sleepiness, moodiness, and inattention in class in your child. 

You can help your child suffering from eczema by keeping their symptoms under control through regular bathing. Ensure to use only non-soap, gentle body wash and lukewarm. Also, help your child to moisturise two to three times a day. You can also use over-the-counter or prescription treatments to manage the eczema symptoms in your child, as recommended by their healthcare provider.

Teens with eczema may have depression and anxiety.

Further, studies have shown that teenagers with eczema can develop symptoms of anxiety and depression. The risk is highest in those who have eczema that flares up frequently or has never stopped flaring completely. Some teens with eczema have also said that their skin condition makes them think about committing suicide as they feel isolated.

So, what can parents do about it?

As per a few research studies, easing your child’s discomfort often improves their mood. You can help your kid with eczema by:

  1. Treating their eczema skin condition. Controlling the disease can help their skin look and feel normal. This will help to improve their quality of life, which can improve their family’s quality of life as well. 

  2. Ensure to talk about your kid's condition with a dermatologist, who has expertise in diagnosing, and treating eczema. They’ll suggest you with about the effective treatments that help to control eczema in your child.

  3. You can help your child to stop scratching by dressing them in bamboo gloves or mittens for your babies. Also, keep their fingernails short to prevent further infection.

  4. Teach your kid to deal with their stress effectively as this is a common trigger causing flareups in them. You can also enroll your children in a tai chi or yoga class to help them deal with their stressors. 

  5. Get professional help for your child with eczema who has anxiety or depression. Getting their symptoms under control can make them feel better with treatment and lifts their anxiety and depression.

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