Beating Eczema with Bleach

Eczema is known for its many treatments ranging from the traditional cortisone creams through to oatmeal baths and wet wrapping.  All treatments are designed to lessen the unbearable itch that is associated with eczema.

Diluted Bleach Baths

Recently I read an article discussing a new eczema treatment – Bleach baths.  This is one that I am not familiar with and although I am happy to tell you my findings it is not a remedy that I am supporting or suggesting you try.

The study I read was recently released from the Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine. The study found that diluted bleach baths could reduce the severity of symptoms for children with moderate or severe eczema.

Reduce Bacteria on the Skin

The rationale behind the findings is based on reducing the risk of bacterial infection that can result from open wounds after excessive scratching or cracking of the skin.  Antibiotics are generally required when the skin becomes broken, however the study reports that bleach baths are becoming more used.

Dr. Tom Kincade, chief of Pediatrics at the Three Rivers Health Center in Muskogee, said the CN clinics see a large number of eczema patients.

“One approach to lowering the amounts of potentially harmful skin bacteria is bleach baths,” Kincade said. “I have recommended several of my patients do this and have seen some excellent responses.”

He did go on to say “I would not recommend this therapy to anyone without first discussing with their health care provider,”

My Concerns About Bleach Baths

My initial concern with this treatment is that baths without oils added tend to dry the skin further which will lead to increased itching and cracking of the skin.  Also I wonder that the bleach does not irritate the sensitive skin of the child with eczema.

What this study does show us is that even when you feel you have tried everything there is always more options available for you to help control eczema.  It is just a matter of being persistent and always on the lookout.

It is also advisable to discuss any new treatment that you read about with your doctor  before you try it your self.