With peanut allergies being more prevalent than ever before recorded, more and more parents are coping with how to protect their children who might be allergic.
Some find out about their kid’s allergies early on, perhaps when giving a baby peanut butter or after giving shelled peanuts to a toddler as a snack. Others don’t find out until they get a phone call from the school with the dreaded news that something went wrong in the cafeteria.
Beyond reading all of the food labels at the store before purchase, managing how to deal with children who have peanut allergies versus siblings who do not, and watching for signs that your little one might have another allergy you aren’t yet aware of, there are many things parents still have to worry about.
Importance of Implementing Training Programs in Schools
Public schools are relatively peanut-aware, as it were, with mandates and programs in place to create peanut-free environments. With an estimated 1.2 to 1.5 percent of school-age children having a peanut allergy, this has become a large enough problem that the school system has had to respond.
But parents sending their kids to school with packed lunches, kids sneaking in candy bars, and the like, there’s always a danger. Beyond the cafeteria requirements at schools, many are instituting training programs for teachers and faculty to teach them not only how to monitor for stray peanuts in the school, but also in emergency procedures should an allergic reaction occur.
Many school nurses and faculty are now trained in the use of and have available epinephrin auto-injectors. Parents should encourage their schools, public or private, to implement these programs and keep EpiPens and trained staff on hand.
Awareness is the primary thing to keep in mind when coping with a child’s peanut allergy. Everyone around your child should be aware of the allergy and what can trigger it.