Karen’s four-year-old son has a peanut allergy. And that involves not only dozens of doctor’s appointments and medicines, but also information. ‘I explained to my son how severe his allergy is and what he can and cannot eat. Even when we are not there, he has to stand up for himself.’ And that goes beyond ‘I can’t have peanuts or milk’. “What parents don’t know is that traces of milk or peanuts can also be deadly.”
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Also dr. Husain, a pediatrician and mother of a daughter with a nut allergy, often worries about the health of her child. She shares some helpful tips. ‘Show your child pictures of the products they are not allowed to eat, for example in books, magazines or – my favorite – during a trip through the supermarket.’ In addition, it is useful to teach your child important symbols and words (such as ‘gluten-free’) on packaging. Agree with your child that he or she will only accept or share food with people who know about the allergy. Another tip: ‘Stay away from words like ‘dirty’, because that way parents think that your child does not like a product alone, when it is actually (life) dangerous.’
Everything you want to know about peanut allergies in children >
According to Karen, it is important not only to talk about the dangers of a food allergy, but also about its consequences. “I taught my child that if he has symptoms, such as itching or difficulty breathing, he should talk to an adult right away.” Finally, several asthma and allergy specialists advise: never panic in front of your child. “They can adopt this behavior. If you panic, so do they. It is important that they know the dangers of their allergy, but that there is no reason to worry.’
Source: Scary Mommy
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