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How can I find indoor eczema triggers?

Find triggers at home

Learn how to find what could be triggering your child's triggers at home.

Match the possible trigger on the chart below and learn what you can do to help treat flares and avoid indoor triggers.

Baby on rug with toys
Possible triggerCould be a trigger if... What you can do 
Dust mitesYour child has severe eczema that treatment and skin care do not help.Trying to control dust mites can be difficult. These microscopic bugs live in everyone's home. The following can reduce dust mites:
  • Place dust mite covers on your child's pillows and mattress.
  • Wash your child's bedding weekly in hot water. Use a fragrance-free, dye-free laundry detergent.
  • Remove rugs and carpets from your child's room.
  • Dust your child's room weekly.
Dry airChild's eczema flares during the winter or you live in a dry climate.Follow the tips found in Winter skin care for eczema.
HeatYour child seems hot (or sweats) and starts to scratch.

Prevent overheating.

  • Remove clothing as needed.
  • Avoid too many covers at night.
  • Air-condition your home when the temperature rises above 75º F.
HumidityYour child seems itchy when it's humid.Keep your home's humidity at a comfortable level.
Pet danderYour child's eczema seems to flare around animals.If you have a pet with fur or feathers, remove the pet from the home for a few weeks. If the eczema lessens, pet dander could be a trigger. Talk with your child's dermatologist about possible solutions.
Sudden change in temperatureYour child seems uncomfortable and starts to scratch after a sudden temperature change.
Tobacco smokeEczema appears on your child's eyelids or your child's eczema flares when someone smokes.To protect everyone's health, ban smoking inside your home. If someone must smoke, make sure the person smokes outdoors.

Related AAD resources

Abramovits W. “Atopic dermatitis.” J Am Acad Dermatol. 2005 Jul;53(1 Suppl 1):S86-93.

Sidbury R, Tom WL, et al. “Part 4: Guidelines of Care for the management of atopic dermatitis. Part 4: Prevention of disease flares and use of adjunctive therapies and approaches.” J Am Acad Dermatol. 2014 Dec;71(6):1218-33.