Parenting a child with food allergies can be challenging, especially during the school season. To prevent cross-contamination and serious reactions, it’s helpful to be prepared.
Eggs, milk, and peanuts are the most common causes of food allergies in children, with wheat, soy, and tree nuts also included.
Kids and teens with food allergies can stay safe at school, but it takes organization, preparation, and education. These tips can help:
Communicate with the school: Inform the school staff about your child’s allergies and provide them with relevant medical information and an action plan.
Educate your child: Teach your child about their allergies, how to recognize symptoms, and what to do if they come in contact with allergens.
Pack safe snacks and meals: Prepare and pack allergen-free snacks and meals for your child, ensuring they have safe food options during school hours.
Read labels: Teach your child to read food labels to identify potential allergens and avoid any unsafe foods.
Medication and emergency plan: Ensure your child carries their prescribed medication (e.g., epinephrine auto-injector) at all times, and the school is aware of the emergency plan.
Inform teachers and staff: Make sure your child’s teachers, school nurse, and other staff members are aware of the allergies and know how to respond in case of an allergic reaction.
Special accommodations: Work with the school to implement any necessary accommodations, such as seating your child away from allergens or avoiding certain classroom activities.
Encourage handwashing: Advise your child to wash their hands regularly, especially before eating, to reduce the risk of allergen exposure.
Be vigilant during events: Be cautious during special events or celebrations where food is involved, and ensure the offerings are safe for your child.
Regular check-ins: Stay in touch with the school to address any concerns and ensure your child’s safety is being upheld.
If you suspect your child has allergies, or need help managing their symptoms, talk to us.