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Saturday, October 8, 2016

Don't Let Allergies Haunt Your Halloween

Halloween is something that may be hard for every family to do. There are many parts from costumes to parties. Many children are allergic to food. If you have a family member that has food allergies here are some ideas you may want to consider. 
  • knocking on doors with their friends, that should be easy enough simply gather a few of their friends have fun dressing up and head out together. Try to agree upon what you will do with the candy collected. Will you donate all of it or keep some and donate some. By donating to shelters, woman's groups or other worthy causes your child is rewarded with a feel good feeling. 
  • Is the eating of the candy that excites your child?? Then why not have some friends over and have a "safe" candy night. Share a pinata or place in a bowl goodies that all can eat. Make up some gluten free cookies or soy free rice crispy treats. 
  • If your child is on a gluten free diet then you will want to arm your self with a gluten free candy list. If your child is dairy free or have another allergy be sure to get the needed information to help your child. 

Please keep in mind that manufactures can change how they produce their products without changing the labels so when in doubt, call them directly. Arm your self with knowledge and dont allow Halloween to scare you. 

  1. Eats Before Treats. One way to prevent kids from gorging themselves on Halloween candy without reading the ingredients first is to feed them dinner before they go trick-or-treating. They ll be less tempted to stick their hands in the candy bag before they get home to check their loot with mom and dad.
  2. Don t be Scared, be Prepared. Parents of allergic kids shouldn t leave the house without their cell phone, emergency epinephrine and wet wipes. Ask friends who trick-or-treat with you to please not eat candy that can cause an allergic reaction. If they do, ask them to clean hands with the wet wipes. Make sure kids are taking their controller medications and keep a reliever inhaler handy in case of an asthma flare after running through the moldy leaves.
  3. Wait Till you re Home for Candy or Other Treats. If you d rather not sort through the candy to determine safe vs. unsafe there are some alternatives:
    1. Give neighbors safe Halloween treats in advance to hand out to your food allergic child.
    2. Give age-appropriate, non-food items to your children. Ideas include coloring books, storybooks, pencils, stickers, stuffed animals, toys, cash and play dough.
    3. Try a variation of the Tooth Fairy. Sort through unsafe candy, then leave it in a safe spot for a "Sugar Sprite" or "Candy Fairy" who exchanges it for a small gift, toy or money.
  4. Dress for Success and Spooking! If you re crafty and can make your child s costume at home, you can include extras for a child with allergies. If hand-to-food contact can spur an allergic reaction, make a costume with a pair of scary gloves. That way, if your little goblin makes contact with dangerous foods, he or she will have an extra layer of protection. If your child suffers from eczema or another allergenic skin reaction, use hypoallergenic make up. Better yet, steer clear of make-up entirely. Beware of store bought costumes which can contain latex and other synthetic dyes that may cause irritation or an allergic reaction.
  5. Ghost Hunting can be Fun Too. Plan an alternate activity, such as going to the movies, hosting a slumber party, or having a scavenger hunt around the neighborhood for safe treats or other items. Some malls, health organizations and local libraries now host candy-free trick-or-treat nights.
  6. Make Sure it s only Witches Taking your Breath Away. Children should never walk into someone s home they don t know, but children with allergies and asthma should be cautious around pets, and never enter any home with smokers. Those are triggers that can cause an asthma attack. For easier breathing, avoiding costumes with masks is best. Put costumes and decorations away in sealable plastic containers. As a precaution against dust, wash any costumes that have been used before and stored. Remember that outside exposure to dead leaves and grass that contain mold at this time of year may trigger symptoms.

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