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Emotional support may help control eczema

Camp Discovery

At AAD's Camp Discovery, spending time with other children who have a skin condition can boost self-esteem, reduce stress, and ease feelings of “being alone

Children and Camp Discovery

If your child seems sad, lonely, or anxious, you may want to mention this to your child’s dermatologist. Research shows that helping your child feel better emotionally can reduce eczema flares.

Your dermatologist can offer suggestions that are appropriate for your child, which may include:

Camp Discovery (American Academy of Dermatology)

  • A summer camp open to children ages 8 to 16 who have a chronic skin condition.

  • All costs, including transportation to and from camp, are covered.

  • Kids receive expert medical care from dermatologists and dermatologic nurses.

  • Kids spend a week during the summer with other kids who have a chronic skin condition.

  • Each child must be referred by a dermatologist.

Patient Conference (National Eczema Association)

Support Groups (National Eczema Association)

Say you care with text messages

For teenagers, a dermatologist may mention an option that may surprise you — text messages.

A study conducted at the Harvard Medical School found that patients with eczema responded well to daily text messages.

The text messages worked so well that most patients:

  • Stuck to their treatment plan more days per week

  • Had less eczema in 6 weeks

  • Wanted to keep receiving text messages

All of the patients in this study had atopic dermatitis, the most common type of eczema. The patients were 14 years of age or older.

Every patient received a daily text message for 6 weeks. The messages reminded them to use their medicine and gave them educational information about atopic dermatitis.

Most patients (90%) said the education information was helpful. And, 85% said the texts reminded them to treat their skin.

WRU W8ing 4? A text message just might be what your teen or tween needs to stick to the treatment plan.

Related AAD resources

American Academy of Dermatology

Eichenfield LF, Tom WL et al. “Guidelines of care for the management of atopic dermatitis. Section 1: Diagnosis and assessment of atopic dermatitis.” J Am Acad Dermatol 2014 February;70(2):338-51.

Fried RG, Gupta MA, et al. “Depression and skin disease.” Dermatol Clin. 2005;23(4):657-64.

Pena-Robichaux V, Watson AJ, Kvedar JC. “Text messages as a reminder aid and educational tool in adolescents and adults with atopic dermatitis: A pilot study.” Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology. 2010 March;62(3)suppl 1:AB10. Commercial support: None identified.