Tips for Managing Your Child’s Food Allergies
When your child suffers from a food allergy, it can feel like danger is around every corner. Remembering to check food orders, ingredient labels, and cross-contact labels can be exhausting. In this blog, I’ll share some tips for managing your child’s food allergies, so you can feel confident about guarding your child’s safety.
Tips For Managing Your Child’s Food Allergies
When your child has food allergies, one of the most immediate ways to manage their health is to prepare for the worst-case scenarios. Speak directly with your child’s healthcare provider to learn more about their specific allergies, the severity of their reactions, and what to do in case of emergencies. Although it is stressful to imagine these worst-case scenarios, preparing a plan to keep your child safe will make these nightmares less likely.
If your child requires medication or an EpiPen, always have easy and direct access to these medications. You can’t always control whether your child comes into contact with dangerous allergens; however, being prepared for severe reactions can make you more confident in keeping your child safe.
Thoroughly Check Labels
One of the most urgent tips for managing your child’s food allergies is to check food labels for allergen information. All products containing shellfish, fish, milk, peanuts, wheat, soy, and tree nuts must legally include labels that indicate the presence of allergens in their products. Apart from these eight major allergens, food products are also required to provide a complete list of ingredients with both the common and chemical names of ingredients. Knowing the proper labeling for food allergens and how to decipher these labels can significantly prevent allergic reactions.
Although it is not legally required, many companies will also include voluntary labels to indicate if products may have had cross-contact with allergens during manufacturing. If you have concerns about clarifying the cross-contact of a product, manufacturers’ contact information is available on products as well.
Cook More Often
One of the best ways to ensure your child does not come into contact with an allergen is to cook at home more often. When you cook at home rather than eating out at restaurants, you maintain more control over the ingredients used in each recipe.
Miscommunications between waiters and cooks at restaurants can easily lead to disastrous mistakes. Even when restaurants are mindful of avoiding allergens, cross-contact with products such as peanut oil could still lead to severe allergic reactions.
Cooking is the safest and simplest method to feeding your child without the fear or stress of possible reactions. Letting your child get involved with the cooking process can also teach them to cope with their allergies creatively.
Managing your child’s food allergies often comes down to a struggle with control. While it’s impossible to ensure that your child never has contact with an allergen in their entire lifetime, you can prepare yourself with the necessary information to meet their needs. Become an expert in your child’s condition and teach your children to learn the skills to keep themselves happy and healthy.
I hope you’ve found these tips helpful and living life with childhood food allergies is more manageable.
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