Paediatric Dermatology

Allergies in Children

Allergies in children are increasingly common and we can help you diagnose and control them. Allergies are caused by the immune system responding to allergens in the environment. The most common allergens for young children are certain foods, dust and pollen.

The most common symptoms of allergies include dermatitis, nasal congestion, sneezing and itchy eyes. In severe cases, a child may develop hives or experience difficulty breathing.

In order to diagnose an allergy, your child's doctor will need to do a physical examination, go through your child’s history and arrange for specific allergy testing if appropriate, including skin prick tests, patch tests, or blood tests.

Treatment for Allergies in Children

Treatment depends on what type of allergy is present. If a food allergy is suspected, then your child will be advised to eliminate or greatly reduce the food from his diet and be monitored regularly whilst eating other foods. If an environmental allergy is suspected (such as house dust mites), then your child may need medication and home modifications to reduce his symptoms so he can continue to enjoy time at school or playdates with friends.

Birthmarks

Birthmarks in children can be the cause of a lot of worry and concern. They are usually benign, but they can progress and evolve into something larger and of cosmetic concern.

An infant's skin can sometimes be covered in white, pink, or brown spots called birthmarks. These marks can be small or large and may appear suddenly after birth, last for weeks or months, and then disappear without treatment. Most birthmarks are not associated with any health problems. There are two types of birthmarks: vascular (caused by blood vessels) and pigmentary (caused by melanin).

Birthmark Treatment

Common birthmarks include moles, café-au-lait macules, Mongolian spots, Naevus of Ota or vascular (red) birthmarks. We would recommend coming in to see your dermatologist to accurately diagnose the birthmark and ascertain if treatment or further investigations are required. Very often the birthmarks are harmless but for aesthetic reasons treatment may be performed to remove, reduce or stop it getting larger.

Eczema in Children

Eczema is a chronic skin condition that causes red, itchy patches to form on the skin. It can occur anywhere on the body, but most commonly appears on the face, arms and legs.

In infants, eczema can appear in the first year of life and is often referred to as "atopic dermatitis." In older children, eczema often occurs in response to stress, heat, sweat or dust. If your child has eczema, you may notice that symptoms tend to get worse after certain activities such as swimming or during the stressful exam season.

If your child begins showing signs of eczema, consult with your Dermatologist for an accurate diagnosis so that he or she can properly treat your child's condition and help minimise future flares.

Treatment for Eczema in Children

Your child should see a Dermatologist early in order to make an accurate diagnosis and to receive effective treatment. Personalised management will be provided and your dermatologist will discuss exacerbating factors, identify allergens, and educate on avoidance of triggers.

Treatments would include gentle cleansers and moisturisers to restore the skin barrier, steroid creams or steroid free anti-inflammatory creams to control any flares.

In cases which are severe, treatment may require antibiotics, anti-itch tablets, oral steroids, wet wraps, phototherapy or oral anti-inflammatory medicines. We also now have the newest treatments such as Dupilimab (Dupixent) injections and oral JAK inhibitors.

Skin Infections in Children

Skin infections in children can cause painful, itchy rashes or asymptomatic bumps. Most skin infections are caused by bacteria, fungi or viruses. These infections can be spread from person to person through contact with an infected person or object (such as a toy), or through sharing things like towels or clothing.

The most common types of skin infections in children include:

Impetigo

This is a bacterial infection that causes crusted oozing patches to appear on the skin. Impetigo patches can be contagious and spread between close contacts.

Folliculitis

This is a bacterial infection that causes tiny red bumps to appear around hair follicles. It can be caused by improper shaving techniques, tight clothing, and certain medications.

Molluscum contagiosum

This is a viral infection that causes small raised spots to appear on the skin. Once infected, your child can easily spread molluscum to their close contacts, or to different areas of their own body. Molluscum is often seen in children who have underlying eczema where the impaired skin barrier allows the viral infection to spread easily.

Viral warts

These are caused by a virus known as human papillomavirus. Warts are most commonly found on the hands, feet and face of children. These can spread to other people via skin to skin contact, or spread when the child picks at their warts.

If you have concerns that your child has a skin infection, do see a good dermatologist to have the infection assessed and treated appropriately.

 

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Meet your principal consultant

Dr Evelyn Tay


Dr Evelyn combines her expertise in dermatology, dermato-surgery and aesthetics to formulate a holistic treatment plan that caters to her patients’ skin condition, lifestyle and preferences. Always striving for excellence in whatever she does, Dr Evelyn believes in delivering quality, evidence-based treatment in a caring, honest and respectful environment.

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