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Tips for Keeping Kids Safe When They Have Food Allergies

Posted Apr 28 2012 7:00am

When my son entered into kindergarten this year, the teacher sent home a small list of things the kids would need to bring to class with them and snacks that parents could purchase to ensure the safety of all the children.  Quite honestly, I was nervous about sending food and/or snacks to school with my son.  With food allergies in children on the rise, I did not want to be that mom.  You know, the one who unintentionally caused another child to get sick.

Having a list directly from the teacher helped ease my nerves.  But what if your child’s teacher, coach or caregiver are unaware of your child’s allergies?  Below you can find a few basic tips to help ensure your child’s safety, in case of an emergency.

Tips

1. Logistical Coordinator – let friends’ parents, coaches and field trip chaperones know of your child’s specific food allergies, how to recognize an allergic reaction and what to do in case of emergency. The best way to do this is to schedule an advanced one-on-one meeting.

2. Wrist Candy – Medical safety bracelets have saved hundreds of lives since EMTs are trained to look for them. The only way a bracelet can save your child’s life in an emergency is if they are actually wearing them. Nowadays, many companies, like Medical ID Marketplace ( www.hopepaige.com ) are creating trendy bracelets that kids no longer have to be embarrassed for wearing them. They have hundreds of designs fit for every kid’s personality. The bracelets also come with a complimentary engraving and allow parents to include emergency contacts and health info.

3. Play Ball – allergies should never come between your child and their extracurricular activity. Make sure to pack a smart snack and a proper medicine kit (i.e. EpiPen, Inhaler, etc). This is where the one-on-one meetings come in handy. Make sure the coaches/staff know how to use the medicine kit correctly, so there is no fumbling around in emergencies.

4. Smart Snacks – kids will be kids and should not be deprived of a mid-afternoon snack because they have allergies. Instead load them up with “safe” alternatives like Oreos and Skittles that are all peanut-free.

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