Eczema Awareness Month: Our Family’s Personal Journey


When my daughter was 24 months old, I found large red welts on the back of her legs.  Soon after she started developing severe food and environmental allergies.  We rushed to the doctor hoping for a swift diagnosis and of course, a cure.  But It was not easy to find an answer.  After much trial and error, we had a diagnosis: Bella has severe atopic dermatitis.  Or eczema.

Eczema Awareness Month: Our Family's Personal Journey Gabriela Morales Contributor Miami Moms Blog
Photo by Will Malott on Unsplash

Our Journey

I knew what everyone was thinking–oh, it’s only eczema.  A rash, right?  Wrong.  To put things into perspective, at age 3 my child was pretty much covered from head to toe with itchy, oozing red rashes, and nothing seemed to work.  Between daily doctors’ appointments and keeping Bella busy or simply holding her so she wouldn’t scratch her welts, my full-time job was my daughter.  

Our daughter was miserable.  Our bubbly, carefree, happy Bella became frustrated by the marks on her little body, and the unrelenting itch from the breakouts.  We needed a cure to bring back that huge smile, and help her lead a more normal, pain-free, comfortable life.

Around 35 million Americans are affected with eczema: 1-3% of adults, and 10-20% of children. 70% of cases start in children younger than 5 years old, and about 60% of infants who have eczema continue to have one or more symptoms in adulthood.

We Tried Everything

From traditional to not-so-traditional to old wives’ tales, we tried every remedy, every doctor, everything.  And after many doctors’ appointments, trips, tears, and frustration, we had a breakthrough.  Nothing dramatic, mind you.  But it came by observation, research, speaking to parents of children with eczema, doctors and others who faced similar skin challenges.  We learned to identify the triggers of her breakouts and allergies, and in time we were able to control her flares.  Most importantly we learned, as a family–because we’re all invested in each other’s health–to live with a child with a special condition.

Because October is Eczema Awareness Month, I want to share with you some of the treatments we tried so that you can have a guide and know where to start.

(Disclosure: These statements are based on my experience as a mother.  You should always go to your primary care physician before doing any treatments for your kid.)

Treatments We Tried for Eczema  

Elimination Diet and Supplements

This was one of the first things we tried.  I used to keep a diary of every food Bella was eating.  The first types of food we erased from Bella’s diet were wheat, dairy, soy and egg (she was already showing allergic reactions to these). We fed her basic and simple staples like rice, chicken, apples, potatoes, and bananas, among others. We also used probiotics and vitamin D. 

We did not see much improvement with this approach.  However, we were able to find some foods that were trigging Bella’s eczema.

National Jewish Health

In 2016, we traveled to the National Jewish Hospital in Denver, CO.  By that time Bella’s skin was a complete disaster.  We had stopped all topical steroids for months, trying to find a natural approach.  She was completely raw from head to toe.

In Denver, they have this outpatient program called Eczema.  Kids stay there for 2 weeks during the day (our daughter’s skin was so bad that we had to stay for 3 weeks) and they provide intensive care of the skin with wet wraps therapy, allergy testing, and food challenges. 

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The wet wrap therapy is great for rehydrating and calming the skin.  They also help topical medications work better.  This treatment consists of a soaking bath (with no soap) for 20min in warm water.  After that, the skin is sealed with topical steroids (or moisturized depending on the severity of the skin) and covered with wet pieces of clothing (100% cotton pj’s are recommended, 100% cotton socks for feet and gauze for the face).  Over these wet fabrics is dry clothing.

This treatment was amazing for Bella’s skin.  We also found out about a lot of food allergies during the skin and blood tests.  We have introduced some foods into her diet thanks to the food challenge.  However, after we left Denver it was really hard to keep our daily bath routine (3x day).  That’s when we continued the search for a better treatment plan.

Dr. Aron’s Regimen

Dr. Aron guided us to the best approach we’ve used with Bella’s skin so far.  Based in South Africa, he’s developed a regimen where he uses a compound of topical steroid, topical antibiotic, and moisturizer (in different concentrations according to each patient).  We did an online consultation with him where we filled out a form with all of our daughter’s medical history and sent pictures of her current skin condition. 

I can’t thank him enough.  He is an awesome physician and human being.  He’s always helping his patients.  And now there is a doctor in the USA that practices his protocol too, Dr. Van Wagoneer.  There’s also has an amazing support group for his patients on Facebook.

I can now say that we are currently in better control of my daughter’s condition.  We know what to do before it gets really bad, but we still are in search of a cure.  Hope these tips help you!  You can find more resources here.


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Gabriela Morales
Gabriela Morales is originally from Valencia, Venezuela. She graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Chemical Engineering in 2004 from Universidad de Carabobo-Venezuela. She married her college sweetheart in 2006. In 2012, she was transferred to USA because of her job, and came with her family. She is a working wife and mom to her 6 years old daughter and 10 years old son. She has her own clothing brand for kids with skin problems, which was created after her daughter was diagnosed with severe eczema. She is an advocate for eczema sufferers and want to create awareness about it. She also has her own blog, where she writes about living with a kid with a chronic condition. She loves to travel, play with her kids, enjoy a good cup of coffee with her peers, and a movie night with her husband.