Skin ish Mom Column

#SkinishMom letters for Eczema Back to School – No-Touch Policy

Inspired by my back to school eczema tips, I wondered what letter a parent would write to inform the school of the child’s eczema and skincare. Starting from this week, this is a series of four #SkinishMom letters written to different schools (conjured up by my imagination and all schools are fictitious!).

Back to School Eczema Letter to School on No-Touch Policy
Back to School Eczema Letter to School on No-Touch Policy

Dear Principal,

I love that my child gets to study in your school and I would love it better if you allow your teachers to help my child with her eczema. Eczema is a chronic skin condition, and it waxes and wanes. It is characterized by dry skin, severe itch and reddish rash. As a parent who doesn’t want to impose additional work on the school’s system, I would have done all that I can for my child’s eczema when she is not in school (so that there is less that your teachers need to do). But it’s not always possible, and it’s made impossible by your no-touch policy.

Imagine with me:

After exercise classSweat triggers her eczema flare-ups. At home, we would give her a shower and moisturize immediately after (the dermatologist’s rule is within 3 minutes). Yet the no-touch policy precludes your teachers from helping. We have taught our child to moisturize on her own, but can you help with moisturizing her back? If not, she will keep on scratching if her skin is dry. It seems akin to letting a child go hungry for hours (in this case itchy) when offering a snack that takes few minutes will help (in this case, literally seconds to moisturize).

Before heading outdoorsChild’s skin is thinner and more vulnerable to sunburn. Eczema and sunburn don’t go well and likely to worsen eczema flare-ups. Even without eczema, sun protection is essential to prevent skin cancer and sunburn. Sunburn in young children, with fever and blistering, requires immediate medical attention – surely, this is something to avoid. Or is the plan here to not apply sunscreen on a child, take her out for hours, get sunburn and call the parent to pick up the child to see a doctor all in the name of your no-touch policy?

I’m fully aware of the reasons behind the no-touch policy – touching a child may be viewed by some with suspicion and if reported, difficult to substantiate basis for the touch. I would like to make it simple by giving permission to your teachers or nurses to:

  1. Apply moisturizer for my child on her back after shower
  2. Apply moisturizer for my child on her torso, back, arms, hands and legs anytime
  3. Apply sunscreen at skin areas exposed to sun, and that includes face, neck, upper shoulders, hands, arms and legs anytime up to 30 minutes before heading outdoors

Thank you

#SkinishMom Disclaimer : A little tongue-in-cheek, don’t cut and paste and send to your child’s school!

Your sharing will help others!