If you have a child who suffers from severe food allergies, the holidays can be particularly stressful, especially when it comes to family get-togethers. With so many different dishes being served, it can be difficult to keep track of the foods that are safe for your child to eat. However, it doesn't need to be impossible to take your child to family get-togethers. Here are four effective steps you can take to make sure your child is protected against food allergies during the holidays.
Bring Your Own Food
When you're dealing with food allergies, it's often easier to just bring your own food. That way, you know that there will be food available for your child to enjoy. After all, it's not always easy to ask your family to prepare meals that are safe for your child. Even if you think that there will be ample food available for your child to choose from, it's still best to come prepared with your own.
Request Recipes for Dishes Served
Bringing food for your child will ensure that they have plenty of things to eat during the festivities. However, that won't stop your child from being tempted by the many delightful dishes that will be set out on the tables. One way to make sure your child is free to eat some of the dishes that are available is to request recipes. Ask your family members to bring a copy of the recipes that they've used to prepare their dishes. That way, you'll know which ones are safe for your child to try. It will also give you new recipes to use at home.
Have a Food-Friendly Family Gathering
If your child suffers from food allergies, suggest an occasional food-friendly family gathering. Perhaps every other holiday, family members can bring foods that are safe for your child to enjoy. That way, your child will have the opportunity to enjoy a holiday that doesn't include checking the ingredients or turning down dishes that are just too tempting to walk away from.
Provide Emergency Response Training
No matter how careful you are, there may be a time when your child comes in contact with a food that they're allergic to. If that happens, you need to know that every family member is prepared to take immediate action to help your child. Before the festivities begin, take a moment to provide your family with emergency response instructions. Make sure they know what to look for, and how to respond should your child suffer an allergic reaction during the party. This will ensure that crucial time isn't wasted once your child begins experiencing a food allergy episode.
Food allergies don't have to mean your child can't enjoy holiday get-togethers. Use the tips provided here to help your child have a fun and safe time at your family get-togethers this year. If you're going to travel, make sure you speak to your child's family medicine doctor about providing refills for important allergy medications your child may be required to take.