July 31, 2008
Back to School Tip for Children with Food Allergies
Hi. As summer continues to fly by, those of us who are parents of children with food allergies start to think about the upcoming school year. The ideas of Epi-Pens, snack bags, field trips and class parties find their way into our thoughts. Sometimes we feel excitement when we think of a new year and a fresh start, but other times we are filled with trepidation. Who will the teacher be, will they be educated about food allergies, will they accept the management plan we are comfortable with or will they try to alter it, do they routinely use food in their classroom, will I feel confident leaving my child with this person all day? I could of course go on and on!
I’d like to share a food allergy tip that has helped me plan ahead over the years. I schedule an appointment for my child to see her allergist every summer. I bring with me all of the school paperwork for the upcoming year for the physician to sign. This takes planning ahead, so before the school year is over, I collect all of the forms I need for the following year. I’ve been burned too many times waiting for the allergist's office to mail me the completed forms. It’s also a big load off knowing that I have all of the necessary paperwork completed and in my hands. This way, the forms are available for me to give to the school nurse during our meeting before the first day of school. It helps minimize any delay in setting up a safe environment for my daughter. As an added bonus, the school staff perceives me as an organized and supportive parent (which is so important to the success of the food allergy management plan!!).
More tips to follow...