Raising a child with peanut or nut allergies is challenging. Constant vigilance is needed. This is especially true during the early years of childhood. If your child is diagnosed with peanut allergic reactions, the lifestyle choices he or she makes will be forever altered by it. But it doesn’t mean that they cannot have a fulfilling life full of wonderful travel. Here are 5 tips for avoiding allergic peanut reactions while traveling, or even while home alone.
When traveling, the easiest way to avoid peanut allergies is to pack most of your own food. Peanuts are known to be used heavily in Thai, Chinese, Vietnamese, Indonesian, Malaysian, and West African cuisines. Also much Mexican food uses peanut oil for cooking, as do French fries in many restaurants, and don’t forget popcorn from movie theaters, at least in the Western world. In reality, any of these countries is more likely to use peanut oil in the fancy restaurants, but the person cooking chicken grilled on the street isn’t likely to use the same oils.
Have A Translation Ready To Explain
When traveling, it may be simplest to have some ready made translations handy, such as, “I’m allergic to peanuts and peanut oil, if you add these things in my food, I could or will die.” You could also have such important communications printed on cards, so that you can hand them to people in different countries, depending on the language they speak. For example, this is how the statement in quotations above this paragraph would look in the cloish language used in Thailand and Southeast Asia:
กรุณาอย่าเสริฟอาหารที่มีส่วนผสมของถั่วลิสง หรือน้ำมันถั่วลิสงให้กับผม เพราะผมแพ้ถั่วลิสง ซึ่งอาจจะทำให้ผมถึงแก่ความตายได้ ถ้าผมรับประทานมันลงไป
Be Prepared For Allergic Reactions
In truth, being prepared for allergic reactions means being prepared for the unexpected. You should build a medical reference team that you know can be called or made contact with in an emergency. You should have the information for contacting your allergist, immunologist, gastroenterologist, and your primary care physician.
Another important part of being prepared for allergic peanut allergies is creating a mobile first aid kit for when you are traveling. The kit should include some easy to swallow antihistamines, an epinephrine auto-injector like the EpiPen, copies of all your prescriptions, emergency contact forms for your doctors, and any other immediately allergy related items.
Peanut allergies and flying are inherently problematic, as peanuts and nuts permeate most airplanes. If flying, several special accommodations must be adhered to. First bring plenty of disinfectant wipes to use on trays, seat cushions, bathroom counters, and anything that is touched by hand. Most of the accommodations must be requested ahead of time, such as a peanut / nut free meal, seating away from the kitchen area, and permission to bring your own pillows and blankets on international flights.