Eczema From Food Allergies: Proof in Pictures

Everyone talks about the sweet perfection of a baby’s skin. Soft, smooth, and flawless. But it’s not like that for every family, and definitely not our food allergy community.


When you notice red spots, bumps, or redness all of a sudden, your mind starts racing. You can’t help but run through what could be causing your precious baby’s skin reaction. Was it the dressing on the salad? The waiter triple-checked with the chef… Or maybe it’s the new laundry detergent and NOT food allergies? Ugh…the mental anguish.


Our poor brains trying to figure it out. Our little people not being able to tell us what’s wrong. Or how about your frustration with the lack of answers? Being a parent is hard — and having a food allergy baby with skin reactions is even tougher. You need to uncover the underlying cause, and we get that.


Today, we're diving into the different types of skin reactions, personal pictures directly from the Free to Feed library, and the best treatments to soothe that baby skin and your mama heart.


Clearing Up The Term Eczema (pun intended)


Numerous terms describe reactions on the largest organ in our body — the skin! A lot of them are different types of Eczema. It’s confusing at times, so let’s break down what’s important in understanding your baby’s skin reaction.


Eczema:

Eczema is “the name for a group of conditions that cause the skin to become red, itchy, and inflamed,” as defined by the National Eczema Association. It’s caused by a response from your baby’s immune system. Eczema encompasses many different types of skin conditions, so it’s used as a blanket term.


The 7 main types of Eczema are [1]:

  • Atopic Dermatitis

  • Contact Dermatitis

  • Neurodermatitis

  • Seborrheic Dermatitis (Cradle Cap)

  • Stasis Dermatitis

  • Dyshidrotic Eczema

  • Nummular Eczema

No quiz, don’t worry! It just goes to show the many different types of skin reactions related to eczema that are possible. Many babies are diagnosed with atopic dermatitis during their food allergy journey, so let’s learn a little more.


Atopic Dermatitis:

One of the many types of eczema, it’s distinguished by a scaly, dry rash that comes and goes, and may itch. Since babies can’t scratch themselves, they might squirm more (cue heartbreak now).


Usually located on cheeks and bendable areas like elbows or knees, atopic dermatitis reactions can occur within minutes or hours after exposure. It’s caused by food proteins (allergens) or products like detergents, lotions, and shampoos.


Plus, other skin conditions occur for various reasons, which leads to more confusion for everyone. Acne, for example, is a completely different type of skin condition and is not a response from the immune system like eczema.


Is Your Baby Having Skin Reactions From Food Proteins?


Eczema involves both genetic and environmental factors. Experts see a correlation between the recent rise in both eczema and food allergies in infants. We know food proteins transfer into breastmilk and can cause a reaction in your baby.


The answer? Maybe…


When navigating food allergies, keep in mind that no two babies are alike. It’s important to get everyone on board to find the root cause of your baby’s skin issues from an allergist, pediatrician, and one of our food allergy experts.


We’re going to show you some important pictures of skin reactions with permission from personal families Free to Feed has helped over the years.


Each Image is a Confirmed Skin Reaction From a Food Allergy:



WARNING: Sensitive Images Below!


Face:












Arms:








Legs:









Back:










Chest/Stomach:










Baby Bum (Allergy Ring):


Some food-allergy babies get this specific skin reaction. The term describes a circle directly around their anus that is visibly red and irritated.








Free to Feed is here to get you answers on your personal situation. After years of working with families, nothing surprises us anymore. Our hearts get bigger and we work a little harder, so your family can get results and feel empowered — not lost.


Common Treatments For Your Baby’s Eczema


The American Academy of Dermatology Associations recommends these top 4 treatments for babies with eczema [3] :

  1. Bathing Routines

  2. Topical Corticosteriods

  3. Find & Eliminate Triggers

  4. Bleach Bath Therapy

Some of these may seem obvious or maybe you’ve never in your life heard of a bleach bath for a baby, the point is…there are options to treat your baby and it’ll likely take a team of people to help get to the bottom of it and on the road to healing.


You’ve likely been down the road of creams (lots and lots of creams). Maybe you first started treating your baby’s irritated rash on your own, hoping it was just dry skin. Or perhaps your pediatrician recommended a cream.


If you’re on the third round of the creams and have a bad feeling in your stomach…go with it. Advocate for your baby. Get a second opinion, and dig deeper. We believe in you and whole heartily know – you know your baby best.


We’re not skin experts — we’re food allergy experts. We do know that sometimes you’re going to have to use a steroid cream to get a reaction under control.


One study looked at whether using daily creams would prevent eczema in high-risk children. Results showed no, it did not. And actually increased the risk of skin infections for some kids! [2] Creams aren’t always a fix and sometimes turn into a bandaid.


Getting to the root cause helps you find real solutions — and we hope to help you!


Is Free to Feed A Missing Puzzle Piece For Your Baby’s Skin Reactions?


We tailor our personal consults to your family’s unique needs and situation. Free to Feed’s food allergy experts will deep dive into solutions for your family. We’re about getting to the bottom of what’s going on and guiding your family on the path to recovery.


If you already know your baby has food allergies, consider our Food Allergy Support Package as your resource. We’re here to educate and support your family’s journey.


Learn More Here!


*Thank you to the families that shared these photos with us. Together we are stronger.*



Resources:


  1. https://nationaleczema.org/eczema/types-of-eczema/

  2. https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(19)32984-8/fulltext

  3. https://www.aad.org/public/diseases/eczema/childhood/treating/treat-babies