Can atopic dermatitis be improved with more baths/showers, bleach baths, or bath additives?

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Goodfellow Gems

Can atopic dermatitis be improved with more baths/showers, bleach baths, or bath additives?

A recent Tools for Practice1 notes that for atopic dermatitis (AD), more frequent baths (and likely showers), 1-2 times/day, improve symptoms meaningfully (≥30%) for about 40% more patients than less frequent bathing (with moisturizers after bath/showers).

Despite advocacy, research does not support bleach baths, bath additives or water softeners for AD symptoms.

Offer simple advice for frequent plain-water bathing and application of moisturizers immediately afterwards. The bleach baths advice is also contrary to advice on the Auckland Health Pathways. Clinical discretion is advised.

Reference:

  1. Bath Time: Atopic Dermatitis and Bathing. Tools for Practice #293 (2021)  View here

Gems are chosen by the Goodfellow director Dr. Bruce Arroll to be either practice changing or practice maintaining. The information is educational and not clinical advice.



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