allergy awareness Archive

Our Thanksgiving celebration was extra special this year with a visit from Grandpa and Grandma Pumpkin, who helped make sure all foods served at the Thanksgiving table were free of dairy, egg, nuts, corn and apple. From papa’s smoked turkey and grandma’s delicious stuffing to the yummy pumpkin chocolate-chip cookies pictured here, everyone at the table was deliciously full by the meal’s end.

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When I signed up to participate in FARE’s walk to say “FAREwell” to food allergies, I had two “C’s” on my mind: community and charity. But what I walked away with was much more. I realized that with play dates, preschool, parties, and so many events that require making sure those without food allergies are aware, I’d forgotten to make sure the most important person was fully aware: my son. I like to think of this awareness for not only others but for our children too as A-E-I-O-U: Awareness, Education, Inclusion, Outreach, and Understanding.

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With food allergies and developmental issues on the rise, many parents are finding themselves overwhelmed, especially at mealtime. For the parent with their first child or a child with food allergies, the introduction of solid food can be particularly stressful. Kelly Benson-Vogt, a speech and language pathologist and the owner of Pediatric Feeding & Speech Solutions, shares practical tips for navigating mealtime. Whether your child has significant eating hurdles or is the so-called picky eater, I hope her advice proves to be as helpful to you as it has been for my family.

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Kids With Food Allergies Foundation (KFA) recently posted that there are now four different epinephrine auto-injector devices on the market. What does this mean for me, a parent whose child has life-threatening food allergies? It means a few things. But most importantly, it means I need to educate and train myself on using the auto-injectors now, so I’m prepared and can respond promptly if my son or another child has a severe and life-threatening allergic reaction. It also means I need to make sure that, in addition to family and friends, my son’s teachers know how to use his epinephrine auto-injector device. KFA in its blog post stresses the importance of knowing the differences between the four commercially available epinephrine auto-injectors and making sure we get the one […]

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While it is virtually impossible to predict allergic reactions and anaphylactic reactions can vary widely, co-existent asthma and exercise can be key factors in whether someone will be prone to more severe allergic reactions, Dr. Robert A. Wood, chief pediatric allergist at Johns Hopkins Children’s Center, says during a Food Allergy Research & Education conference.

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Discovering food allergies and obstructive sleep apnea in my son when he was younger gave me a crash course in motherhood. I quickly learned how to manage both and be my child’s best advocate. Here are five key ways you can be your child’s too: 1) Trust your gut; 2) Get help and support; 3) Educate yourself and others; 4) Speak up, don’t be shy; and 5) Breathe. Trusting your instincts is by far the best piece of advice I could offer to any first-time parent. When my oldest child was a baby, he often woke up every 45 minutes–literally. Lots of things would get him back to sleep at night, but he often woke up within the hour.

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