Food Allergy Action Month: Taking Control of Your Food Allergy
Food allergies are on the rise among Americans, and the cause is unclear.
There’s no cure and, with most allergens, no chance of outgrowing it. If you’re one of the estimated 15 million Americans that live with this reality, you know the importance of proper food allergy care and how it can mean the difference between life and death.
Know the Facts
- Food allergies affect one out of 13 children. That’s almost two children out of every school classroom.
- On average, every three minutes a serious allergic reaction sends someone to the emergency room.
- If one or both of your parents suffer from any kind of allergy, you are much more likely to suffer from a food allergy.
- Food allergies can manifest at any age.
Understand the Dangers
Reactions to food allergies can range from being a slight nuisance to being life-threatening if not treated quickly and correctly. Chances are, even if you don’t have a food allergy, you probably know and spend time with someone who does. Severe allergic reactions may result in anaphylaxis, which could lead to anaphylactic shock. Practicing proper food allergy care is imperative when living with food allergies.
Take Action: Proper Food Allergy Care
The best way to avoid an allergic reaction is of course, to avoid the food you’re allergic to altogether. The problem is, that food may be cleverly hiding in the ingredients of items commonly stocked on the grocery store shelf.
Be sure to read food labels carefully before putting any products in your cart, and if you dine out, don’t be shy about asking the cook what ingredients are used in the meal you’re considering ordering.
Sometimes, incidents occur even when you think you’ve managed to avoid your allergen. In these unexpected situations, it’s crucial that you already have an emergency plan in place. If your doctor has prescribed you epinephrine, or another medication, be sure to always have it on you easily accessible.
Should you become unable to speak due to a severe reaction, wearing a medical bracelet can alert those around you that medical help is needed.
If your child has food allergies and you leave them in the care of a babysitter or family member, be sure to write down what his or her allergy is, special instructions on what to do should an allergic reaction occur in your absence, and the name and number of your child’s doctor. Post this information on the refrigerator or by the phone so it is clearly visible.
When you take such precautions, the chances of you or someone you love suffering a serious allergic reaction greatly decreases.
Set Up an Appointment with Lebauer HealthCare
Food allergies affect many aspects of your life whether it be at home, at work, at school, on vacation, at a restaurant, or at a dinner party. In recognition of Food Allergy Action Month, our team of dedicated providers is available to meet with you. Together, you can create a unique food allergy plan that meets your needs and lifestyle.