This study examines maternal perceptions of paediatric atopic dermatitis (AD) on family and determines risk factors including severity of AD, maternal physical and mental health (MH), quality of life of patients and sociodemographics which predict a negative family impact. A cross-sectional assessment using the Dermatitis Family Impact Questionnaire Scale to assess the impact of AD on family, Infant's Dermatitis Quality of Life Index (<5-yrs old) or Children's Dermatitis Life Quality Index (5-17 yrs old) was used to measure health-related quality of life (HRQOL) of paediatric patients with AD. A 12-item Short-Form Health Survey (SF-12) was used to assess physical and MH of their mothers. Risk factors of adverse family impact were assessed using multiple regression analysis. One hundred and four patients with AD and their mothers were studied. Their mean ages (+/-s.d.) were respectively 6.4 +/- 4.3 and 37.2 +/- 6.6 yrs. In multiple regression analysis, Severity Scoring of Atopic Dermatitis (SCORAD) appeared to be associated with negative family impact and the association remained significant after adjustment for bio-psycho-social factors and HRQOL of patients. The association remained insignificant after adjustment for physical and MH of the mothers. Our results show that the severity of paediatric AD leads to negative family impact through reduction of physical and MH of the mothers, and is independent of patients' HRQOL and sociodemographics. The current approach for managing paediatric AD in Asian society could include early multidisciplinary intervention, aiming at enhancing physical and MH of mothers while minimizing negative impact on family and social isolation. Further research will be welcomed as the results of this study mainly applied to Asian society which could be different to populations from other geographic areas.