Imogen and her family will take on a 5km inflatable challenge along with her family to raise money for EOS next week.
The Beattie family from Edinburgh have already raised £600 for Eczema Outreach Support and will do the inflatable course fundraiser on Saturday. Imogen (8) has had eczema since she was just a baby and has at points been covered in the painful chronic condition almost from head to toe. Her eczema can be so severe that her skin will crack and weep and mean she has to miss out on activities like swimming as her skin is sore and broken.
But the family found support in Linlithgow-based children and young people’s charity Eczema Outreach Support (EOS) and now Imogen along with brother Tristan (10) and dad Stuart will run to raise funds for them.
Stuart said: “Imogen is a really brave and positive girl so she doesn’t complain too much about her skin but we know it must be sore.
“Just now it is her hands and feet that are mainly affected and she has to wear plasters and bandages on her fingers so she can hold a pencil comfortably. She also has to be bandaged up with special cream at bedtime and wear eczema clothing with built in scratch mitts at night so she doesn’t break her skin itching in her sleep.”
Imogen uses a range of treatments for her skin, including strong steroids and bandages soaked in solution to calm the skin as well as heavy moisturisers. Stuart said: “We have tried so many treatments over the years and were under dermatology care at Edinburgh Royal Infirmary but since Covid we have struggled to access the eczema clinic at hospital. Imogen’s skin is causing her problems still so we are waiting to be referred again to see what help or treatment is available.
“It’s a misunderstood condition, people think it is just a bit of itchy skin but it can be really severe and affect the whole family. Often Imogen doesn’t sleep great with itching and we have to really be on top of her various prescriptions and make sure she always has lots of plasters for her fingers at school. Thankfully she hasn’t been too self conscious over her skin, but it is a worry that one day she will not want to wear her plasters and bandages for looking different. “
Eczema Outreach Support came to Imogen’s school and hosted a workshop to educate her classmates on the condition and explain why she might be itchy or wearing bandages sometimes. Mum Rachel has also found the charity a source of support, putting the family in touch with others going through similar and getting information and advice from the EOS family workers.
“We found EOS a great source of support and advice and wanted to give back to them. Just knowing there are other families going through the same thing has been comforting.”
The Beattie family will run the Inflatable 5km at Hopetoun House near South Queensferry on September 9.