#1 – “Emmy’s Eczema” by Jack Hughes
This a great read for reading with young children to help them understand their condition better as well as helping siblings, classmates, or friends understand what it is like for children living with eczema. It addresses the itching sensation and the knowledge that it isn’t good to scratch. The premise of the story is Emmy is a dinosaur who has eczema. Emmy knows she shouldn’t scratch, but sometimes she is just so itchy that she can’t help doing it. Emmy ends up scratching too much which causes her skin to be sore. Emmy learns what makes her eczema worse and what can help make it feel better. The story addresses an important myth about eczema- that it is contagious and is a great educational read for young ones.
#2 – “I Know Someone with Eczema” by Vic Parker
This book is a great read for elementary age children. It provides actual photographs of what eczema looks like, which can often be helpful for children to see an animal or cartoon characters may not always be helpful for older school-aged children. The book provides basic facts about eczema, covering the important ones such as it isn’t contagious so touching someone with eczema does not transmit it. It covers things that can make eczema worse such as irritants like wool, scented lotions, or sweat. It also calls out some celebrities or famous folks who are diagnosed with eczema to normalize the condition. THere is a great page about how you can be a good friend to someone who lives with eczema. This can be a book that helps a child understand their condition better as well as a tool to help siblings, classmates or friends, understand the condition better.
#3 – “Under My Skin: A Kid’s Guide to Atopic Dermatitis” by Karen Crowe
This is an informational book that can help a child with atopic dermatitis better understand their condition as well as an educational tool that can be used for others to understand what it is like to live with eczema. The book is loaded with helpful pieces of information and is often spotted in dermatologists‘ offices. It can be a great tool to validate the experience of life with eczema for a child as it has sections where it provides quotes from other children living with the condition. It talks about topics such as: daily skin care routines, tips for talking about eczema, infections, stress, sweat, triggers, dry skin, etc.
#4 – “Camille’s Itchy Twitchy Eczema” by Candis Butler
This is a story about a young girl name Camille who has eczema. The story addresses bullying, specifically at school, but also focuses on how to talk about living with eczema and how to educate others. Some of the language in the book may not be best for younger children (specifically the bullies at school call Camille a monster), this may be better suited for older children for this reason. The book is helpful in diving into the symptoms and how frustrating they can be including wet eczema, intense itching, how it can be painful and the emotional toll of living with a visible condition. The book can be helpful for those who have experienced bullying or helpful to have in a school where many of the concepts discussed in the story are applicable to things that occur in a classroom or school environment.
#5 – “The Bizarre and Wonderful World of Eczema Boy” by Peter Terrence
This book is a good read for older children either late elementary school and middle school. The story is about a boy named Reed who possesses unique powers, he can change someone’s hairstyle just by looking at them and he also can read the minds of adults (specifically anyone over the age of fifty-eight and three quarters). Reed also is diagnosed with eczema. The story addresses the important topic of bullying and also addresses how often those with eczema feel when their skin condition is called out or talked about a lot (which happens with Reed’s teacher). The book is humorous and takes you on an adventure as Reed and his bandmates go on a magical adventure to investigate their teacher Mrs. Bunions.
#6 – “Rachel has Eczema” by Jenny Leigh
This book is for younger audiences (such as ones that may be starting pre-school or elementary school) or for those who may be fearful of going to the doctor. Rachel is a Rhinoceros who is itchy and has sore skin and she is having trouble sleeping at night. She goes to see Dr. Spot who diagnoses her with atopic eczema. The story talks about the different ways that Rachel’s atopic eczema can be treated including wet wrap therapy and using emollients. The book is endorsed by the National Eczema Society as well.
#7 – “Can I tell you about Eczema?” by Julie Collier
This story is from the perspective of Helen, who is a girl with eczema. Helen describes how it feels to have itchy and inflamed skin most of the time. This can be a helpful read to validate a child’s experience living with eczema as well as a helpful read to share with siblings, classmates or friends about the realities of life with the condition. It is a factual account and discusses the various treatment options (focusing on creams and ointments) and shares some ways in which others can support their friends or loved ones with eczema. Both the author and her daughter are both diagnosed with eczema since they were around 4 months old, so the book takes in to account their own personal experiences. This book is packed with a lot of information so may be better for those who are in the fourth grade or older.
#8 – “Malcolm Finney, Medical Detective: The Case of Itch and Rash” by Erika Kimble
This is a fun and clever approach to educating children about eczemas and ways to manage it. The story strikes a great balance between illustrations, dialogue, facts, and adventure. The story takes you along for a ride as Malcolm a fourth-grade boy solves the medical mystery of the red, itchy rash he discovers on his new neighbor Carlita’s arms. Is it from the bee stings she just got? Is it poison ivy? Is it from fleas or an allergy to something? Maybe it is her asthma? Malcolm and Carlita together try to solve this medical mystery. The book explains the layers of the skin and helps to introduce children to eczema and understand it better. The book has fun illustrations, but the science components and length, probably make it a good read for older children.
#9 – “The Itchy Kids Club: Silly Poems for Itchy Kids” by Jill Grabowski
This book includes a selection of poems that are meant to make a serious topic a little more light-hearted. The poems are a fun way to talk about some of the important aspects of living with eczema, allergies, and asthma.
#10 – “Wonder” by RJ Palacio
While this book doesn’t specifically address living with eczema this is an incredible read about a boy named August who was born with a facial abnormality and has been homeschooled all his life. The book is about August’s experience going to school for the first time at age 10. The issues that August encounters, specifically handling the range of reactions to his appearance and the things that people say to him, are experiences that those with eczema will be able to relate to. The topic of bullying is addressed and therefore this can be a worthy read for both those living with eczema as well as for parents to share with siblings, classmates or friends as the book shows the different aspects of bullying– being a witness, a bully, a victim or a protector. This is a great read to teach many valuable lessons including not judging someone by the way they look, but by their inner character. This can be a story for all ages, but may be best for middle school ages and older.