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Old 18.07.2012, 22:49
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Can't find sunscreen that my child doesn't react to.

I think I've tried practically every sunscreen available from the pharmacy and my 2 year-old gets a terrible skin reaction from all of them.
She also has eczema, so her skin is often pretty itchy and blotchy to start with. Her doctor had no suggestions, the pharmacy just wants to sell me the sunscreens made for sensitive skin (tried them already) and I've done a lot of googling and have only come up with a couple products that aren't available in CH.

Short of keeping her out of the sun at all times (impossible) and wearing longsleeves and pants (still need sunscreen for the face though), I just don't know what to do!

Has anyone ever had the same problem? Maybe there's some kind of sunscreen that I missed that might just be the one?

Thanks for any suggestions!
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Old 18.07.2012, 22:57
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Re: Can't find sunscreen that my child doesn't react to.

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I think I've tried practically every sunscreen available from the pharmacy and my 2 year-old gets a terrible skin reaction from all of them.
She also has eczema, so her skin is often pretty itchy and blotchy to start with. Her doctor had no suggestions, the pharmacy just wants to sell me the sunscreens made for sensitive skin (tried them already) and I've done a lot of googling and have only come up with a couple products that aren't available in CH.

Short of keeping her out of the sun at all times (impossible) and wearing longsleeves and pants (still need sunscreen for the face though), I just don't know what to do!

Has anyone ever had the same problem? Maybe there's some kind of sunscreen that I missed that might just be the one?

Thanks for any suggestions!
Chris
which products have you come up with? we have a load of sunscreens from the US in our bathroom so perhaps something overlaps
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Old 18.07.2012, 22:58
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Re: Can't find sunscreen that my child doesn't react to.

Since most sunscreens are full of harmful chemicals... it's not really surprising that people with sensitive skin have problems. The sun is very important for all life (ask any plant). Humans included. We have been enjoying the light and energy from our planets life giver for hundreds of thousands of years without the sales pitch for sunscreen. The only sunscreen I ever put on my 2 year old is on his cheeks and his nose and otherwise none at all. I find it important for him to get enough sun for vitamin D protection. If you really feel it is necessary to protect your child from the sun, I would suggest your local reformhaus or heath food store, since the apotheke doesn't seem to have anything to help you. I personally use "Green Beaver" from Canada. Most of the healthfood stores have products with only natural ingredients.

As for the eczema, I can suggest you work on trying to clear that up. I have had a lot of success with natural health sites such as naturalnews.com and here is the link search for eczema on mercola.com
http://search.mercola.com/search/Pag....aspx?k=eczema
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Old 18.07.2012, 23:18
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Re: Can't find sunscreen that my child doesn't react to.

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which products have you come up with? we have a load of sunscreens from the US in our bathroom so perhaps something overlaps
Thanks. We were actually in the US in the Spring and we tried out all kinds of different ones. I found one that seemed to do the trick (Neutrogena pure and free baby faces ultra gentle sunblock) and bought about 6 tubes of it. But it looks like after a couple of months of use, she's starting to react to that one too.
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Old 18.07.2012, 23:24
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Re: Can't find sunscreen that my child doesn't react to.

I dont know if you've tried this one, but the Mustela sunblock for sensitive skin is a mineral sunblock, not a chemical one. You can use it on newborns, for instance. Might work?

Feel very sorry for your daughter though. Eczema and sensitive skin really sucks
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Old 18.07.2012, 23:25
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Re: Can't find sunscreen that my child doesn't react to.

I was just thinking about that the other day... how people got along for most of human history without having sunscreen for their children. I guess humans were once all dark-skinned and didn't need it, though.

To the OP -- you could try searching on amazon.com or amazon.uk for an all-natural sunscreen. Maybe the reviews will help you decide might be a good one to try. Perhaps there is even something made specifically for children with exzema (<-- I know I didn't spell that right. )
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Old 18.07.2012, 23:28
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Re: Can't find sunscreen that my child doesn't react to.

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Since most sunscreens are full of harmful chemicals... it's not really surprising that people with sensitive skin have problems. The sun is very important for all life (ask any plant). Humans included. We have been enjoying the light and energy from our planets life giver for hundreds of thousands of years without the sales pitch for sunscreen. The only sunscreen I ever put on my 2 year old is on his cheeks and his nose and otherwise none at all. I find it important for him to get enough sun for vitamin D protection. If you really feel it is necessary to protect your child from the sun, I would suggest your local reformhaus or heath food store, since the apotheke doesn't seem to have anything to help you. I personally use "Green Beaver" from Canada. Most of the healthfood stores have products with only natural ingredients.

As for the eczema, I can suggest you work on trying to clear that up. I have had a lot of success with natural health sites such as naturalnews.com and here is the link search for eczema on mercola.com
http://search.mercola.com/search/Pag....aspx?k=eczema
Thank-you for the suggestion- didn't think of asking at a reformhaus.
I don't usually apply suntan lotion to my kids unless they're out for prolonged periods or we're at the pool. I had terrible sunburns as a kid, and don't want my kids to go through that pain, not to mention the damage to the skin later on and increased risk of skin cancer.
Thank-you for the link about eczema. I'm kinda convinced it's related to something she's eating even though the doctor says it only has to do with dry skin and bacteria. It's very hard to figure out the culprit short of eliminating most foods and reintroducing them- very hard to do with a two-year-old!
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Old 18.07.2012, 23:32
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Re: Can't find sunscreen that my child doesn't react to.

Eczema is an allergic response. Once the child has a very high 'response' level, then they are more likely to react. My daughter got very bad eczema at age 2 (started about a month after I stopped breastfeeding her) - and it took about 2 years for us to eliminate by trial and error.

Turns out her 'main' allergic reaction is to strawberries and tomatoes. She recently did skin prick testing (she's 12) and turned out allergic to a lot of chemicals like glue (used at handcrafts), liquid paper (used at school) and Elmex Toothpaste ! (probably the sodium lauryl sulfate).

I have lab experience with sunscreens. And am also a highly skin-sensitive person. I've certainly had plenty of reactions to sunscreens. My general advice would be to go for a thick cream instead of a 'lotion' or 'spray' and see if you can find one based on 'titanium dioxide'. I don't put anything with octyl-methoxycinnamate on my skin because I know it's one of the chemicals that I definitely react to.

I also recommend going for SPF 20 instead of 50 if it's available - the SPF 20 wont' have quite so many 'active' ingredients so in theory less potential for an allergic reaction.

Unfortunately, with the current trend in sunscreens and going to higher and higher SPF, the companies are releasing more and more different formulations onto the market, so what you were using last summer might not be still available this summer...which is a pain if you've found something that worked.

I would suggest making sure you have a really good management plan for the eczema, don't put sunscreen on 'broken' skin, and invest in a sunsuit and a broad-brimmed hat.

There is now very solid research to show that the more times that a kid is badly burnt, the more likely they are to develop melanoma. The key is the burn episodes, not the overall 'little bit here, little bit there' exposure. Also depends on the sensitivity of the skin - my husband has a darker skin tone to me, but burns at a very high rate (lab tested, under 10 minutes in direct sunlight and he starts to burn) - burns and virtually does not tan - I have very fair skin, but I don't burn as easily, and tan quite easily. Point is, skin colour (or tanning) doesn't protect your skin, how sensitive you are depends on your genetic predisposition to sun (and dark skinned people get burnt and get skin cancers just like any other skin tone)...

At work we use the 'hypo-allergenic' or 'kids' formulations of Nivea and Eucerin, which are both manufactured by Beiersdorf, a big brand and also big on their R&D. Personally, I prefer the thicker 'Eucerin'. We also have a thick paste one. Unfortunately they don't list the ingredients online but this one might be one of my 'preferred' options:

http://www.apotheke-online-internet....on-lsf-25.html

One of my staff likes us to get 'Pelsano' for the kids, which is a thicker cream, and seems to be not to irritating...I'm pretty sure it's a titanium or zinc formulation

http://www.pelsano.ch/deutsch/sun-ki...-lotion-20.php
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Old 18.07.2012, 23:33
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Re: Can't find sunscreen that my child doesn't react to.

My niece has terrible eczema, and the dermatologists at the CHUV (cantonal hospital) regularly made blood tests on her to screen for allergies, as they evolve through time. You can detect many food allergies via blood tests.
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Old 18.07.2012, 23:35
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Re: Can't find sunscreen that my child doesn't react to.

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I was just thinking about that the other day... how people got along for most of human history without having sunscreen for their children.
Easy. They died of something else before the skin cancer got to them. Plus they probably didn't sit on the beach sunbathing. Plus the ozone layer was thicker. Plus some probably did die of skin cancer but no one knew what it was.
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Old 18.07.2012, 23:41
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Re: Can't find sunscreen that my child doesn't react to.

Oh, and I just looked up the ingredients for 'Pelsano' and Green Beaver' and they are both thick zinc oxide creams. So probably quite similar formulations.

We have a friend who died at 34 from melanoma. NSW, Australia (where I come from) has just become one of the first states in the world to ban sunbeds because the evidence is that they contribute massively to the skin cancer risk. They will be banned from 2014.
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Old 18.07.2012, 23:48
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Re: Can't find sunscreen that my child doesn't react to.

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I was just thinking about that the other day... how people got along for most of human history without having sunscreen for their children. I guess humans were once all dark-skinned and didn't need it, though.
What makes you think people didn't die of skin cancer before ? We just didn't know what it was.

However, I do have another theory. I backpacked in India for 6 weeks when I was 19, and didn't get sunburnt once... Came home with a lovely 'tan'. Then I had a shower and my 'tan' washed away...seems the grime and grit of being in the dust probably protected my skin.

The hole in the Ozone layer definitely is significant in Australia, and you will find that one thing common to the 'upper' classes of Europe and Asia is that they kept out of the sun if possible. Having fair skin is a sign of wealth and prosperity, being suntanned means you've been working outdoors and belong to the 'labourer' class...

And yes, African people definitely get sun burns and skin cancers, it's just harder to see the sun damage on dark skin... I've done a skin test on a man who was olive-skinned and had a deep tan layer (loved the sun) and he had a skin type that began to burn in the equivalent of 5 minutes in direct sunlight.... no natural protection from sunburn whatsoever...he just kept burning his skin over and over so you couldn't see the redness - he freely admitted that he would peel a lot, but you could say he was 'addicted' to burning his skin...lots of damage being done...
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Old 18.07.2012, 23:52
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Re: Can't find sunscreen that my child doesn't react to.

Swisspea: thank-you so much for all that information!
I don't remember trying the Eucerin and I never considered going for a 20 instead of a 50. I didn't have any luck with the Pelsano- can't remember if it was a higher factor though.

As for the eczema, besides cortisone cream for the really bad areas, her doctor gave us Optiderm F Creme for the red, scaley bits, but I stopped applying it because she screams out that it hurts her and reacts almost as if it's burning. It doesn't help anyways. Strangely, a different lotion that worked wonders on another daughter that had the same problem a few years ago, doesn't at all work on this one. Guess it's just trial and error.
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Old 19.07.2012, 00:05
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Re: Can't find sunscreen that my child doesn't react to.

We've struggled to find anything here in Switzerland that's 'recommended' by the dermatologist and our daughter doesn't react to...

In Australia we have this excellent company called 'Ego' which is a family business run by two dermatologists, I know the owners personally. They make fantastic stuff, and I just can't find anything that comes close...

http://egopharm.com/

Unfortunately, when our daughters skin was 'broken' it did seem to burn/hurt her to put the cream on, but if we persisted with it twice a day for 3-4 days, the cream did seem to make a difference (her eczema never resolved completely until we eliminated the causes from her diet)...
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Old 19.07.2012, 03:57
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Re: Can't find sunscreen that my child doesn't react to.

Have you tried Daylong?
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Old 19.07.2012, 08:34
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We use ultrasun products.
http://www.ultrasun.co.uk/products

We have sensitive & fair, Celtic skin in the family and these products all work well. Although the marketing says 'Swiss made' I have never found it here & always buy it in the UK, airports, John Lewis or online.

HTH
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Old 19.07.2012, 08:57
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Re: Can't find sunscreen that my child doesn't react to.

Bübchen Sonnenmilch sensitiv (no perfumes) works for my son, who reacts to the usual stuff. Available in Germany at dm, Rossmann or Müller, for under EUR 10 per bottle.

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Old 19.07.2012, 09:24
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Re: Can't find sunscreen that my child doesn't react to.


This is what we use. We have to get it posted from the UK and its not the cheapest. But it better than a child whose face goes puffy, red and bumpy when usual suncreams are applied.
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Old 19.07.2012, 09:40
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Re: Can't find sunscreen that my child doesn't react to.

We manage sun exposure through hats, light weight shirts, pants and umbrellas (and lots of trees!) as much as possible. We use a zinc oxide sunscreen (bought a bunch at whole foods before we came here), i think it is Badger (they also have a nice bug repellent, smells heavenly!)

Also, it is important to keep the skin healthy from the inside and out. Oil is necessary for healthy skin, unrefined coconut oil being our oil of choice. i have a recipe somewhere (meaning in our household shipment on a boat) for 'coconut oil/cocoa/honey fudge' that goes in the freezer. eating it gets the oil 'inside'!

i used straight unrefined oil on 'outside' once a day 2 summers ago and had wonderful results, being able to stay out longer and not getting burned.

blueberries are supposed to be good for skin health as well. vitamin e oil can be found 'straight' in stores sometimes. also, i have read (and it kinda makes sense) that when you have sunglasses on they filter the light exposure your brain thinks you are getting and your brain (and therefore your skin) reacts differently not knowing how intense the sun is.

good luck.
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Old 19.07.2012, 09:48
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Re: Can't find sunscreen that my child doesn't react to.

My mother-in-law uses aloe vera before going into the sun instead of sunscreen. I can't vouch for it, but another natural option to try. Worse-case scenario it makes a nice lotion or after-sun.
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