This post is brought to you by Alphapharm
Wow thank you so much for your responses to my post on Anaphylaxis last week. I learnt so much from your own experiences and allergies. I didn’t realise that people could be allergic to perfume or have a severe reaction to common fruits like bananas and strawberries. I also was saddened to hear that some of you have struggled with school and other people’s attitudes.
With school going back it is so important to have an allergy action plan prepared and in writing for your school. According to the new website anaphylaxis101.com.au the most important thing that parents of a child with a severe allergy need to do before school starts is work out an anaphylaxis management plan. This covers staff training, educating students, management of high risk situations and detailed information on how to minimise risk at school. The anaphylaxis management plan may also include having life-saving medicines on hand in case of an anaphylactic emergency, such as an adrenaline auto-injector if you have one. This is signed off by your treating doctor as well. You can also find a great 10 point plan which you can find here if you need more help in getting ready for school.
Some other great advice that came out of your comments was no sharing, making sure the school really enforces a no sharing rule and making sure that your children know that they can’t share food with other students.
Something else that surprised me and that I didn’t think about is that by banning foods that your child is severely allergic to you, you do need to let your child know what that food looks like. That hadn’t really occurred to me. In order to be aware and stay away from it you need to know what it looks like. Some readers told me that people don’t realise that almond meal comes from almonds and almonds are a nut. So easy to make something gluten free using almond meal but you’ve got to follow the schools nut free policy so don’t forget.
Some great tips from my readers are to tell everyone (even if you think you are being annoying) wherever you go and food is involved. Melany says when she orders lunch for her daughter through the online canteen system a picture of her daughter comes up with her allergies and the canteen will go through the lunch order and make sure that everything is safe. One day the electricity went out and they rang Melany at home to ask her what they could make for her, ducked out to the supermarket, got the ingredients and made her a safe sandwich. Kate is an assistant principal and said that at her school the action plans are clearly visible in the admin area and classroom and staff are trained each year. Her advice is give the school as much information as possible. And another great tip from my readers was to never become complacent. That can be when accidents happen.
So thank you everyone, it’s definitely a topic that a lot of you have experience and have taught me about. Hopefully those of us who don’t have children with allergies but do have children starting school have also learnt something. You can find out more at the website www.anaphylaxis101.com.au . And with all that talk of back to school, I better get name labels on all the uniforms and get keira’s school supplies.