Eczema (Infants)

Medically Reviewed by Carol DerSarkissian, MD on November 06, 2021
2 min read
  • Suddenly develops a rash along with symptoms such as difficulty breathing

1 out of 10 infants and children have eczema, a dry itchy rash that comes and goes. It's not a dangerous condition, but it can be itchy and uncomfortable for baby and frustrating for parents.

  • Your baby develops a new rash.
  • The rash looks infected, appears redder, or has a yellow crust or ooze.
  • Home eczema treatments aren't helping.
  • Your baby has a fever associated with the rash.


  • Use lukewarm water. Hot water can make eczema worse.
  • Limit your use of soap and discuss with your doctor the type of soap you should use.
  • Rinse your child's skin twice to remove soap residue.
  • Keep baths short since prolonged contact with water can be irritating.
  • Put a gentle moisturizer on your baby's skin as soon as your child is out of the bath. Reapply it several times a day or with every diaper change.
  • Do not use any medications or medicated creams unless a doctor recommends it.
  • Hypoallergenic fragrance-free moisturizers are best.
  • Light, breathable cotton fabrics may be most comfortable. Wash clothes before wearing.
  • Avoid heavy, tight, or scratchy material such as wool, nylon, or synthetic fibers.
  • Try to keep your child from scratching. Keep your child's fingernails short and clean.
  • Avoid any substance you know will trigger an allergy.
  • Avoid irritants such as perfumed soaps and detergents.
  • Use cold compresses to relieve the itch.
  • Don't let your baby get too hot or sweaty. Either one can make eczema worse.
  • Never give a baby an antihistamine without talking to a pediatrician first.
  • Ask your pediatrician about medications to relieve itching and whether food or environmental allergens could be triggering the eczema.