For kids with eczema, 'soak and smear'

To bathe or not to bathe: that has been the question for parents of children with eczema.
Some parents think that frequent bathing ultimately will dry out the skin and make eczema symptoms worse. But others think that baths are an important way to control symptoms, to soothe the skin and to keep it clean. Meanwhile, doctors have been split over the years on the best way to go, offering parents conflicting opinions.
Now, a new review of studies on bathing and eczema attempts to provide some clarity. Doctors affiliated with the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (ACAAI) said that daily bathing is best, as long as it is followed by a thick coat of moisturizer. The technique is called "soak and smear." Their review appears today (June 29) in the Annals of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. 

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