Baby Eczema and staying calm was an important part in my little girls recovery from the inflammation caused by eczema. It's difficult to think of trying to maintain a cool head and keeping calm, when faced with the frustrations of eczema, but it is essential, to minimise the pain caused.
Plied by a lack of sleep, I became very irritable and I'm sorry to say, that sometimes I snapped and became agitated to my daughter and her condition. This in turn made my already upset daughter distraught and increased her itching.
A local drop in centre ran counselling on a voluntary but limited basis and I was at my wits end trying to cope. I made the 'no brainer' decision to try the counselling service as it offered me possibly some salvation from my problems.
The counsellor was an incredibly aimable guy, who approached my problems with a feeling of sincerity. I explained how the problems had manifested themselves after my daughter's eczema became unmanageable. Including how this had led to a lack of sleep, making me agigated and incredibly irritable.
He asked me several questions to ascertain my relationship with my daughter and reassured me this had no bearing on whether I was a good mother. It was just to see what steps I was undertaking which could cause my daughter's irritation from eczema to increase.
The counsellor advised of the importance of getting my daughter into a calm state before she went to bed, as this would allow her to sleep for a few hours uninterrupted. Allowing the healing process to take effect and give me a few hours of restbite, possibly some quality sleep aswell.
I'd told him when I was putting the eczema pyjamas onto my little girl, she just kept scratching and scratching. I'd end up shouting at her, with the majority of times, ending up in her crying. I would then feel extremely guilty about this later on.
He told me it wasn't my fault, I'd realised I had problems and taken a step towards rectifying them with counselling. He advised me to be slightly passive to my daughter, when getting her dressed.
He said, at the age my daughter was, children are trying to determine their boundaries, that is how far they can push their parents.
My daughter was no exception to this role of determining her boundaries but coupled with her eczema, she became easier to upset. Which in turn would lead to bawling her eyes out and scratching like there was no tomorrow.
To overcome this boundary seeking, I should be more passive and try to keep what I said to a minimal at times when we could both end up arguing, such as bath time, bedtime and getting dressed time.
So for bedtime, he said just get her ready without rising to the bait and once ready, gently take her to bed and kiss her goodnight. Tell her how much you love her, as you leave the room and if she gets out of bed, wait till she comes out of her room. Then guide her back to bed without saying anything until she's tucked up and then tell her you love her.
If she scratches whilst she's in bed, leave her for a few minutes and then go in and put her back under the covers calmly and wish her goodnight.
By doing this he said, you'll avoid arguing with each other and she'll be calmer when she goes to bed and throughout the night. He said there's a time for discussion but it's not at bed time when discussion can easily turn to argument.
He also said establish a calm time, about an hour before she goes to bed. Where there's no television, just maybe reading to my daughter or some conversation.
He said try to give her at least an hour of calm time on any days I'd bathed her, as her skin would have dried slightly from bathing and maybe more prone to irritation.
In just a couple of days, bedtime routines became easier and my daughter's eczema inflammation subsided. Combined with controlled crying techniques, I was able to get her to sleep quicker without distress when she woke during the night.
For both of us, the quality sleep time increased, which benefitted both of us immensely.