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Precautions for Managing Your Child’s Food Allergies at School, Including Wearing Medical ID Jewelry
Preparing to send a child to school with food allergies is a scary and sometimes overwhelming venture. The goal is to try to control your child’s environment as best as possible. In this article, we summarize key precautionary steps you can take to have influence over the school environment. It’s worth noting, that while reviewing other blogs on the subject, we’re struck that a majority leave out the explicit importance of adding medical ID jewelry to your child’s food allergy safety plan.
Medical alert jewelry is a simple and effective way to get you immediate and proper medical care and to save your life in the event of an emergency.
If you were in an emergency, first responders need to know if there is a serious or chronic medical condition involved that requires special medical attention.
Medical alert and medical ID jewelry will alert first responders and bystanders to your medical condition thereby enabling the appropriate care. All medical personnel are trained to look for medical ID jewelry. In a serious medical situation, time is of the essence and can be the difference between life and death.
There are many medical conditions that should be immediately known to first responders, such as:
- - Diabetes
- - Food Allergies
- - Implants like pacemakers
- - Severe Asthma
- - Epilepsy and seizure disorders
- - Drug Allergies
- - Shunts for dialysis patients
- - Alzheimer’s
- - Bee Sting Allergies
- - Coronary heart disease
- - Renal Failure
- - Transplant Surgery
- - People on blood thinners
- - Mentally disabled
- - Cancer patients
- - Person’s having bariatric surgery
Everyone with a serious medical condition should wear a medical alert bracelet. Medical alert / ID bracelets are designed to be noticed by trained personnel. It’s important to note that both medical alert necklaces and bracelets are considered appropriate ID tools by the medical profession. Emergency personnel are trained to check any jewelry on your person to see if it is medical id jewelry. However, its been documented that EMTs always look for bracelets first.
Additionally, depending on the type of activity you are engaged in, you may consider a different choice of medical alert and medical ID jewelry. For example, if you normally wear an ID necklace and you’re heading to the mountains to go skiing, it’s advisable to switch to an ID bracelet, as first responders would not have to dig through so many upper-body clothing layers to find your ID necklace.
The information contained on your medical alert jewelry is just as important as actually wearing your alert jewelry on a regular basis.
Here’s an example of the type of core information that must be included on your medical ID jewelry:
- - The Star of Life symbol
- - Statement of your type of medical (and if you take insulin)
- - Food or drug allergies
- - Prescription information
- - In-case-of-emergency (written as ICE) contact number information
- - Add anything else paramedics must know, including noting any implants (e.g., pacemaker or insulin pumps that shouldn't go in an MRI scanner)
In recent years, medical ID jewelry has come a long way in terms soft of looks. Gone are the days of the standard stainless steel bracelets. Fashionable jewelry styles are available for women, men and children that look great and allow for variety, but still convey the vital life-saving information medial alert jewelry was originally designed to do. If you have a medical condition that requires alert jewelry there really is no reason not to be wearing one with so many styles and options available on the market today.
At N-Style ID we've created hundreds of fun and fashionable medical alert jewelry for men, women and children.
Just because your child has a food allergy, it doesn’t mean that your child can’t have a safe and fun-filled Halloween. With advanced planning and some creative thinking, celebrating Halloween with your child can still be a blast.
Reading labels, staying vigilant and being mindful of alternatives to traditional Halloween revelry (and treats!), are critical for a safe and healthy Halloween for children with food allergies.
When it comes to reading labels, at Halloween it can be a challenge because the mini-sized treats don’t usually have the ingredients listed, rather the ingredients are listed in the large bag that the mini-candies come in. Also, with miniature candy, often times the ingredients are slightly off from their larger non-Halloween packaged counter parts.
Knowing that the majority of child food allergies stem from peanuts, milk, shellfish, eggs, tree nuts, wheat, soy and strawberries, have a look at the most popular candy and chocolate on the market. A vast majority of Halloween candy contains one or more of the ingredients that cause children’s food allergies.
Always stay away from any treats that contain the following:
- Chocolates (milk, eggs)
- Candy or chocolate with caramel (contains milk)
- Candy & chocolate with nuts
- Candy bars with cookie centers, like Twix and Kit-Kats (wheat)
- Licorice, Twizzlers and Tootsie Rolls (wheat)
- Any candy or chocolate that contain strawberries
Safe candy actually does exist at Halloween. Look for:
- Dots Life Savers
- Dum Dum Suckers
- Jelly Beans, Mike & Ikes
- Nerd’s and most types of gums
If you’re ultimately not up for the ensuing battle of taking candy away from your child after an evening of trick-or-treating, but don’t want to take the Halloween experience away from your child, many experts suggest that you take the time to deliver non-candy “goodie-bags” to your neighbors so they can give then to your child when she gets to their home.
Items to consider including in the goodie-bags can be simple yet totally enjoyable for your child: glow sticks, temporary tattoos, small toys, puzzles, practical joke toys, stickers etc.
While all the emphasis may be focused on keeping your child safe from dangerous treats, its important to remember that part of keeping them safe at Halloween, is to focus their attention away from the candy-filled side of this holiday. Here are some great “distractions” and alternative fun during the Halloween season:
- Focus the emphasis of the holiday on planning and creating their unique Halloween costumes
- Go all out and involve them in great Halloween decorations for the house
- Design a Halloween themed scavenger hunt -- Your child and their friends can go door-to-door in search of the scavenger hunt items instead of candy
- Throw an over-the-top hunted house party on Halloween night and invite all of your children’s friends over.
- Have your child “run” the hunted house to provide her an exciting responsibility
Regardless of how you end up spending your Halloween, for your own peace of mind always remember to carry antihistamine and epinephrine (be sure to have it at your child’s school too, especially during Halloween), and if your child doesn’t already wear one, a medical ID bracelet is mandatory for proper care in the event of an emergency.
The holiday season is a joyful time of year, especially for children eagerly anticipating special treats like sweets and toys. For parents of children with food allergies, however, it can also be an anxious time. Those same treats that kids look forward to can be life-threatening dangers to children with food allergies. The threat may seem obscure to some who don’t have kids with food allergies. In fact, according to the Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Network (FAAN), food allergies affect 6 million children in the U.S., a full 8 percent of the population. This means that food allergies should be on everyone’s mind when preparing food for holiday gatherings. With proper preparation and raised awareness, the holidays can be less worrisome for parents and safer for children.
Birthday parties can often be tough for children with diabetes because they usually mean saying no to treats that everyone else is enjoying. However, parties don’t have to be a drag for these kids. Organizing a party that is diabetic-friendly and allergy-safe is simple.
Begin by organizing your successful party with the invitations. Make a note on the card to parents to please let you know if their child has any allergies or is diabetic. This removes any stress a parent might feel about asking for special attention for their child. Being aware of allergies and diabetes requirements ahead of time also makes your planning easier.