Constant itching, excessive scratching, painful crying and throwing tantrums — the list goes on. For parents who have gone through all of the stages with a child suffering from dry and irritated skin, this may seem like part and parcel of a daily routine. But what about the sibling(s)?
The chances of developing dry and irritated skin condition are much higher when it runs in the family, but some of them may be lucky enough to escape. What can parents do to forge better understanding and encourage acceptance between the siblings? Scroll below to find out more!
1. Engage your child in an honest and open conversation
It’s natural for siblings to feel resentful and jealous at all the time and attention given to their sibling who suffers from dry and irritated skin. From administering daily treatment regimens to providing emotional support, the overall routine management may be a struggle for the sibling to accept, given that children at the age crave for a similar amount of attentiveness from their parents as well.
For starters, try to sit them down and explain the reason why their sibling may require extra care and attention at times. Help them understand the condition of dry and irritated skin by teaching them the do’s and don’ts habits and the discomfort that their sibling may go through on a daily basis. This is also a great chance for them to practice empathy when it comes to interacting with their siblings, which can help forge better communication skills in the long run.
2. Make treatment regimens a family routine
One fun and easy way to involve them in understanding their sibling’s condition is to include them in daily treatment regimens. You could be applying the necessary emollient and creams while the brother/sister can interact with the sibling as a method of distraction.
By spending time on such routines, this will help them to understand more about why their brother or sister needs extra attention and help reduce feelings of jealousy. Besides that, it is also a healthy form of expressing emotional support for the child with dry and irritated skin by showering him with attention, where the child will feel loved and cared for by the family members.
3. Teach the sibling on the basic routine do’s and don’ts
Due to the body’s natural sleep and wake cycle, a person’s temperature decreases at night, which can make the skin feel itchy and prone to nighttime scratching. Not just that, children also tend to scratch more in their sleep, further aggravating the skin. If the siblings are sharing a bedroom, ensure that the sibling who does not have eczema learns the basic do’s and don’ts on how to manage nighttime itches whenever dry and irritated skin condition flares up.
For instance, teach your child to notify either you or your partner as soon as possible whenever he or she is woken up by the sound of incessant scratching. The sibling can also be taught on detecting early precautionary measures, such as voicing out if the room is too stuffy as children with dry and irritated skin tends to sweat more and may overheat easily in an enclosed environment.