As the excitement of Christmas is over and children start returning to school, for some the dread goes beyond strict teachers and unfinished homework. For those living with atopic dermatitis (AD), this time of year can be a real struggle, with the cold weather leading to possible flare-ups.
AD is the most common type of eczema, affecting approximately 1.5 million adults in the UK with 1 in every 5 children affected by eczema at some stage. For those living with AD, the cold weather can trigger flare ups, which can cause extreme and persistent itching often leading to sore and broken skin from scratching, and infections.
Whilst many kids may moan about having to go back to school after the fun of Christmas holidays, for those with AD the fear of returning to school is real. A typical school day for a child with AD can present a variety of triggers, whether it’s the soap in the school bathroom or a PE lesson, many different things can aggravate their symptoms of AD. Research has found that one in five school-aged children with eczema are bullied as a result of their symptoms. At school, children face being called names such as “a reptile” which can lead to feelings of upset and isolation, with some children not wanting to return to school after the holidays. There is also a common misconception that AD is contagious, especially amongst school children, and so there is a need for increased education to better inform people on the true nature of the disease.
Aston spoke to Alex Holmes, Deputy CEO at Anti Bullying Pro and Ruth Holroyd, blogger and case study to discuss through the research and talk about the need for increased education to better inform people on the true nature of the disease.