Manage allergies in schoolchildren - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

Manage allergies in schoolchildren

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If your child suffers from allergies, the stress he faces may come from more than just his studies. Classrooms can be another source of exposure to allergens.  Here are some tips for dealing with it:

  • Talk with the staff at school. Provide the teacher and the school nurse with a brief history of your child's allergies, including what he's allergic to, what his allergy symptoms are and which medications he uses to treat them.
  • Check the classroom environment. If your youngster has airborne allergies (dust, mold, etc.), try to keep her away from carpeted areas, ask that she be seated away from any chalkboards that may increase exposure to airborne particles, and find out how often the classrooms are cleaned to keep down mold counts.
  • Don't forget the pets. Many instructors keep class pets, so if your child has allergies to animal dander, let the teacher know.
  • Check the lunch menu. Give officials written information about the foods your child is allergic to and the symptoms he develops.
  • Create a treatment plan. Have medicine available with the school nurse for younger children, or have older kids keep their medicine with them. Children with life-threatening allergies should have immediate access to an epinephrine injection kit; they could keep one in their backpack. Also, school officials need to have a list of all of your child's allergy medicines, plus dosing information.
  • Provide emergency contact information. In addition to your own contact numbers, make sure school officials have numbers for your child's pediatrician, allergist or family physician.
  • Teach your child. Once your child is old enough, help her understand about her allergies -- why she should avoid dusty areas, why swapping snacks at lunch can be a problem, etc. This will help her make smart decisions when she's away from home.

From the Texas Tech Health Sciences Center, I'm Dr. Tedd L. Mitchell, and this is the President's Prescription. 

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