What Are Skin Problems?
The early infant/toddler years are a risk period for diaper-related skin problems, thrush and many skin disorders that develop due to many environmental exposures and immune related issues that young children may experience.
Some common childhood skin problems may include:
- Diaper rash
- Seborrheic dermatitis (cradle cap)
- Fifth disease
- Rashes from bacterial or fungal infections
- Rashes from allergic reactions
What Your Doctor May Tell You About Skin Problems
If your child’s skin problem is serious enough, your child’s doctor will likely tell you to see a dermatologist (specialist) who will be able to identify and treat difficult cases.
In most cases, your child’s doctor will view your child’s skin problems as a skin issue in isolation to anything else going on with your body.
The treatment protocol may be topical creams or lotions and may require some removal such as warts or cysts.
In more serious cases, your child’s doctor may suggest steroid (cortisone) or antibiotic creams to eliminate the problem topically.
In the case of a rash developed from an allergy, your child’s doctor may tell you that you have “contact dermatitis”, which is the general name when the specifics are not understood.
An antihistamine will likely be recommended.
Another Way of Thinking About Skin Problems
The Problem with Steroids
Before treating skin symptoms with a steroid (cortisone) cream or other treatments that suppress the immune system, consider doing a little detective work to identify the root cause of the symptom or symptoms.
Please note that skin problems such as eczema can lead to the development of asthma if the skin problem is treated with a steroid (cortisone) cream.
Steroids suppress the immune system, thus driving the disease process deeper.
Because the toxin needs to come out, if it can’t come out through the skin, the lungs may be the next organ of toxin elimination.
Problems seen on the skin usually indicate one or more underlying imbalances that need to be addressed.
The skin is the body’s first line of defense.
It is also a major excretory organ that your body uses to eliminate toxins.
If you see skin symptoms, it is a good indicator that the body is trying to eliminate something such as a toxin (chemical or microbial).
It is also very common for heavy metal toxicity to show up on the skin.
For example, arsenic contamination can result in keratosis pilaris, which shows up as yellow calluses on the feet and hands, split skin between the toes, or marks on the skin.
Mercury poisoning can cause red rashes.
Viral, bacterial and fungal infections can cause various types of rashes or may show up at the end of an acute illness.
If a rash is persistent or is recurrent, it could be a chronic infection such as strep, Human Herpes Virus #6 (roseola) or Lyme disease and other vector-borne illnesses such as bartonella, babesia or erlichia.
Persistent rashes are not normal and underlying causes should always be explored.
There can also be multiple causes for any given skin symptom.
For example, peeling skin on the feet is often associated with a fungal infection, but it can also be a sign of a chronic strep infection, which occurs when the immune system is overburdened and dysregulated.
In order to eliminate skin problems it is important to address toxicity, yeast overgrowth such as Candida, fungus, mold, parasites, viruses, bacteria, nutritional deficiencies and other imbalances that may be going on with the immune system.
Skin Problems Checklist to Start
Make dietary changes:
- Eat whole foods
- Buy organic foods
- Remove all GMO foods
- Remove all fast and processed foods
- Remove all foods with:
- Artificial colors
- Artificial ingredients
- Remove potentially inflammatory foods such as:
- Strictly limit:
- Refined salt
- Refined carbohydrates
- Join the Feingold Association www.Feingold.org to learn more.
Include plenty of good quality fats, such as:
- Coconut oil
- Olive oil
- Wild salmon
- Organic chicken
- Organic turkey
- Grass-fed ghee
- Essential fatty acids from:
- Cod liver oil
- Hemp seeds
- Flax seeds
- Evening primrose oil
- Borage oil
- Walnut oil
- Krill oil
Remove vegetable oils such as:
Include plenty of high-quality proteins with every meal, such as:
- Pasture-raised eggs and chicken
- Grass-fed beef
- Wild-caught fish
Heal the gut with special diets that focus on removing grains and reducing sugars, fructose and starchy carbohydrates, such as:
- GAPS (Gut And Psychology Syndrome) diet
- Body Ecology Diet
- GF/CF (gluten-free/casein-free) diet
- Paleo diet
- Modified Atkins diet (replaces the ketogenic diet)
Learn more about healing diets and foods.
Add fermented foods and probiotics daily:
These will keep the gastrointestinal system and microbiome healthy and strong which in turn will keep the immune system strong.
- Eat kefir yogurts
- Eat fermented vegetables
- Eat umeboshi plums (very alkalizing)
- Eat miso soup, if soy is tolerated
Some good probiotics are:
- Gut Pro
- Dr. Ohirra’s Live Cultured Probiotics
- Garden of Life
- Klaire Labs
Use digestive aids with your practitioner’s guidance:
- Betaine hydrochloric acid (HCl) for low stomach acid (with meals)
- Digestive enzymes with DPP-IV for gluten and casein intolerances (with meals)
- Proteolytic enzymes (on an empty stomach)
- BiCarb (on an empty stomach)
- Bromelain (with meals)
- Papaya (with meals)
Clean up your environment:
Have you identified and removed possible environmental triggers, such as mold, dust, pet dander, and electromagnetic fields (EMFs)?
Have you identified and removed possible toxic exposures in the home from purchased products, such as detergents, soaps, lotions, and other cleaning and personal care products?
- Remove animals (both live and stuffed!)
- Remove carpets
- Use non-toxic cleaners
- Use non-toxic building materials
- Green your home
Ask your pediatrician to run some laboratory tests for:
- Possible food sensitivities and allergies
- Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay (ELISA) IgG, IgA, IgE and IgM
- Nutritional deficiencies in vitamins and minerals. The NutrEval by Genova Diagnostics Labs covers the following areas:
- Cellular energy
- Mitochondrial metabolism
- Neurotransmitter metabolism
- Vitamin deficiencies
- Toxin exposure
- Detoxification need
- Bacterial and yeast overgrowth
- Gluten and casein sensitivities
- Organic acids: The organic acid test by Great Plains Laboratory for:
- Yeast overgrowth (Candida)
- Other microbial infections
- Comprehensive Stool Analysis by Genova Diagnostic Labs to identify:
- Altered gastrointestinal function
- Bacterial/fungal overgrowth
- Chronic dysbiosis
Use homeopathy specific for skin problems:
- Rhus toxiconderon
Use herbs, essential oils and natural supplements with your practitioner’s guidance:
- MCT oil (coconut)
- Cod liver oil
- Micelized A (water soluable vitamin A)
- Alpha lipoic acid
- Vitamin E
- Aloe vera
- Witch hazel
- Tea tree oil
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin D3
- N-acetylcysteine (NAC): helps with detoxification process and healing of the gastrointestinal tract
- MSM transdermal cream
- Epsom salts baths
See a homeopath or naturopath:
These practitioners can diagnose and treat gastrointestinal disorders naturally so that the child’s immune, sensory, neurological and nervous systems develop without being compromised.
See a well-trained acupuncturist:
Acupuncture can help strengthen the lungs, kidneys and liver.
See a NAET or BioSET practitioner for an allergy elimination treatment:
NAET and BioSET can help eliminate food and airborne allergies.
Still Looking for Answers?
da Costa Baptista, I.P., Accioly, E., de Carvalho Padilha, P. Effect of the use of probiotics in the treatment of children with atopic dermatitis; a literature review. Nutr Hosp. 2013;28(1):16-26
Drago, L., Toscano, M., De Vecchi, E., Piconi, S., Iemoli, E. Changing of fecal flora and clinical effect of L. salivarius LS01 in adults with atopic dermatitis. J Clin Gastroenterol. 2012;46 Suppl:S56-63
Eichenfield, L.F., Tom, W.L., Chamlin, S.L., Feldman, S.R., Hanifin, J.M., Simpson, E.L., et al. Guidelines of care for the management of atopic dermatitis: section 1. Diagnosis and assessment of atopic dermatitis. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2014;70(2):338-51
Oh, S.Y., Chung, J., Kim, M.K., Kwon, S.O., Cho, B.H. Antioxidant nutrient intakes and corresponding biomarkers associated with the risk of atopic dermatitis in young children. Eur J Clin Nutr. 2010;64(3):245-52
Orivuori, L., Mustonen, K., de Goffau, M.C., Hakala, S., Paasela, M., Roduit, C., et al. High level of fecal calprotectin at age 2 months as a marker of intestinal inflammation predicts atopic dermatitis and asthma by age 6. Clin Exp Allergy. 2015