There are about 15,500 children in Scotland with severe eczema, a skin condition which can make you feel itchy and sore. It cannot be cured and can be especially painful when it flares up.
Here’s what it’s like living and going to school with the condition from a young person who knows:
- Living with eczema has always been hard. It’s not a thing that can be ignored. If left untreated it can spread all over your body and be very painful and itchy.
- The tricky thing about eczema is that it’s not like having a cough, where you can just get cough syrup and you’ll be fine in a couple of days. No – eczema is very different for each individual.
- Eczema really affects me at school because I find myself distracted from my work because of the irritation of it. I often find myself scratching which makes it worse.
What can schools do to help support pupils with eczema?
- Be aware of pupils suffering – don’t be naive to the severity of it. It’s not just a rash or skin irritation.
- Make sure pupils are educated about it. Address misconceptions such as: ‘eczema can be passed on just by being near someone who has got it.’ It is these sorts of things that make life difficult when you’ve got eczema.
- Be aware of how eczema can impact on emotional well-being and self-confidence.
I was lucky enough to have friends that understood it and who knew that it was a skin condition and it was treatable. However other people may not be so lucky. They might find that people avoid them or feel uncomfortable, maybe fearing that you might spread it on to them.
If you want to know more about eczema, Eczema Outreach Support have loads more information.
- How might having eczema impact on your learning?
- Why might having eczema effect your self-confidence?