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29 May, 2019 00:00 00 AM
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Eczema problem among school children

Eczema problem among school children

Hispanic and black children are more likely to miss school than white children due to the chronic skin condition eczema, a new study finds. Researchers analysed more than a decade of data on more than 8,000 2- to 17-year-olds enrolled in a national eczema registry. Overall, 3.3% missed six or more days of school over a six-month period. That meets the US Department of Education's definition of chronic school absenteeism.

Compared to white children, Hispanic children were 3.4 times more likely to be chronically absent due to eczema, and black children 1.5 times more likely, according to the study published online May 22 in the journal JAMA Dermatology.

"The effects of eczema are more than skin-deep, and studies have shown that the mental health and social impact of this condition can be significant -- sometimes just as much or more than the physical," said lead author Dr. Joy Wan. She's a postdoctoral fellow and instructor in dermatology at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine.

Eczema, also called atopic dermatitis, is a common inflammatory disease that causes red and itchy skin. It affects about 30 million Americans, including up to 20% of children, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The condition is more common among black and Hispanic children than among white children. Along with the physical symptoms, eczema can have mental health impacts as well, including increased risk of anxiety and depression.

"Most people don't realise the serious impact eczema can have on a person's life, and our research shows minorities may be disproportionately affected," study senior author Dr. Junko Takeshita said in a university news release. She is an assistant professor of dermatology and epidemiology.

"We still have a lot to learn about eczema-related disparities but it's becoming increasingly clear that these disparities need to be addressed," Takeshita said.

It’s a good idea to discuss your child’s eczema diagnosis with the teacher at the start of the school year. A teacher who is familiar with eczema can help your child cope with the practical aspects of the condition and any social or emotional issues that may arise in the classroom. To help the teacher make your child’s school experience as normal as possible, set up a meeting to discuss your child’s eczema and what you have learned about coping. Below are some topics you may wish to cover in your meeting.

If your child is taking prescription medications, consider meeting with the school nurse.

Some states may only allow a nurse or the child (under adult supervision) to apply topical steroids. Therefore, if topical steroids need to be applied in school, it is best for the child to apply the medication themselves. Check with the school administration about the rules governing application of topical medication. For anyone who applies topical steroids, they must be sure to wash their hands before and after application, as topical steroids can be absorbed through the skin.

If the teacher will be giving your child oral medication, discuss when the medication should be taken and details such as whether it should be taken with food.

Your child may have to limit certain activities, such as sports, or take special precautions.

    HealthDay

 

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Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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