Parenting: Causes of Eczema in children

Causes of Eczema in children
A child suffering from eczema

Eczema or atopic dermatitis is a common skin condition that is not contagious that makes the skin dry, itchy and red. It is prevalent in children from zero to five years old. It is an inflammatory process that happens on the outer layer of the skin making the skin vulnerable and more sensitive. Eczema originates from the gut which is why it is common among children. Food is a common contributor that inflames the gut thus triggering an inflammatory response.

Eczema in children is always accompanied by food allergies mostly animal proteins. Respiratory allergies such as asthma and even eye itchiness. Eczema is caused by a combination of things such as immune system reaction, diet, environmental triggers, stress and genetics.

If you have eczema your immune system overreacts to common allergens. This leads to skin inflaming and redness.

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Family history/genetics

You are also likely to have eczema if there is a family history. Genetics plays a big role in this. You are also at high risk if there is a history of asthma, hay fever, or any other allergies in your family.

Environmental factors

The environment is also a major contributor to eczema in children. Low humidity can lead to skin dryness. High temperatures can make a child itchy. Exposure to air pollutants and some soaps and creams can lead to eczema.


Diet is the key factor that can heal or make eczema worse. What you feed your child will actually determine the well-being of a child.

Overfeeding a child is one of the things that can lead to eczema. In the event that a child is fed before food is fully digested and processed from the gut, then the gut does not get to clean itself before accepting more food. This leads to an inflamed gut leading to the development of allergens which are triggered when food is introduced thus leading to eczema.

There are foods that are of low or no nutritional value to the child that should be avoided such as sugar, wheat, milk and honey during the early years of a child. They are triggers of eczema.

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Erosion of normal skin bacteria

In other children, atopic dermatitis is caused by too much of the bacteria Staphylococcus aureus on the skin. This displaces helpful bacteria and disrupts the skin’s barrier function.

Staphylococcus aureus is a normal flora bacteria found naturally on the skin, however, in the event of an immune-compromised person, surgical incision or skin breakage it can lead to diseases such as boils, impetigo or even more serious diseases like osteomyelitis or cardiomylitis.


Eczema is such a nightmare for mothers with children suffering from it. It is uncomfortable and stressful. There is no cure for eczema, however a change in diet, avoiding the triggers and sometimes with age children get to outgrow the condition.