Parenting is a constant struggle between your desire to keep your child protected and your desire to let he or she live their lives in exciting and adventurous ways. For parents of children with food allergies, the allergy represents an additional wrinkle that can create some resentment and frustration without careful planning on your part.
Below, you'll find a guide to developing a plan for managing your child's allergy while they attend school. By following these suggestions, you can be sure that your son or daughter remains safe while also making sure that they can enjoy their time with their friends and get the most they can out of their learning environment.
Start With Early Introductions
One of the most important steps in managing a food allergy is making sure that everyone in a position of authority understands the allergy symptoms and how best to respond. Unfortunately, children are very easily embarrassed, and your son or daughter is unlikely to want to cooperate if they think there's a chance their peers will be watching.
The best way to combat this is to set up meetings with teachers and administrators before the school year even begins. Not only will this encourage your child to be themselves during the introductions, it will also give the teachers and staff the chance to develop an early and thorough understanding of the challenges of your child's food allergy.
Be Aware Of All Concerns
The cafeteria is far from the only place on campus where your child may come into contact with food allergens. Many classroom projects involve handling food, and the sharing of treats on the playground is extremely common.
If your child's allergy is particularly severe, it's important that you set up easy access to medication at various locations throughout the school. This will help guarantee that whatever the time or context, any accidental ingestion of your child's food allergen can be quickly and thoroughly addressed.
Keep Them Involved
Ultimately, children are largely stubborn and resistant to doing anything that makes them feel different. If you attempt to pass down draconian rules and oversight, you'll likely find yourself meeting with a great deal of resistance. Instead, listen to your child's concerns and work closely with him or her in developing your allergy reaction plan. Not only will you find yourself exposed to new information, you're also far more likely to have your wishes followed and for the safe environment you desire to flourish.
For more information, contact Alidina Laila MD or a similar medical professional.