Eczema (atopic dermatitis)

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​Learn what atopic dermatitis is and what you can do to help your child cope.

Key points

  • Atopic dermatitis (eczema) is a chronic skin condition that comes in many forms. Skin becomes dry and very itchy, and a rash may appear. There will be times when the skin is worse or better.
  • Eczema shows up as patches of dry, rough skin that can be red and is often itchy.
  • Sometimes the skin is itchy without any rash. Scratching the itchy skin can cause the rash to develop and sometimes cause breaks in the skin leading to wounds or sores, redness, swelling, damage and discomfort. Open wounds can develop weeping of clear fluid and crusting ("scabs").
  • There are many things you can do to control the itch and to protect your child's skin.
Last updated: October 9th 2023