Always Carry Your Epipen
When my daughter was diagnosed with a severe peanut allergy 6 1/2 years ago, I started noticing anything and everything having to do with peanut allergies. I read news articles, blogs, medical reports, and caught as many newscasts as I could. However, I also read the very sad stories of children who have died from accidental peanut ingestion. It reminds me of how very serious and deadly Bean’s peanut allergy truly is. While reading these somber articles, I always look for the cause. What caused the child to eat something with peanuts? I make mental notes and add them to my list of do’s and don’ts that I need to teach my daughter. I know there is no way of keeping her 100% safe, other than putting her in a peanut free bubble. Yes, I have actually considered it a time or two. However, her peanut allergy is something she is going to have to live with the rest of her life (or until they find a cure). In the meantime, I have to let her experience school, and friends, and life in general. I just hope and pray every day that if a situation does arise, that she remembers what I have taught her and will make wise choices.
It is estimated that 50 – 62 percent of fatal cases of anaphylaxis were caused by peanut allergies. This terrifies me, because all it takes is one accidental ingestion. One mistake. This is why carrying an Epipen is a MUST. In many of the stories where someone lost their life to a food allergy, an Epipen was not easily accessible, or the allergic person did not have one with them at all. One girl was at camp and left hers in her cabin. In another story, he was moving and it was packed in a box. And in another the mom left it in the car while grocery shopping. The reality of it is that anaphylactic reactions happen when you least expect them to. No one ever says, “oh what the heck, give me that peanut butter cookie. I have my Epipen handy.” So the time you will need your Epipen the most is when you expect to need it the least. I realize it may not be convenient to do, but find a way to keep it with you everywhere you go. All it takes is one slip up, and it could cost a life.
Also, invest in a medic alert bracelet. Reactions come on quickly and close off airways, making it impossible to talk. At least pointing at the bracelet will alert people about what is happening if you do have a reaction.
Posted on March 16, 2013, in Epipen, Food Allergies, Important Information, Peanut Allergy and tagged allergy, Anaphylaxis, Epinephrine autoinjector, Epipen, Food, peanut, Peanut Allergy. Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.
Did you hear about the 19 year-old kid who recently died because he ate a cookie which contained peanut oil? I guess his friend said the cookie didn’t taste like nuts, so he ate it! His epipen was packed away because he had just gotten home from college!
It’s really scary! I’ve definitely relied once or twice on my boyfriend telling me something “tasted fine” but almost always, I don’t eat it if I’m unsure and I always have my Epipen.
Amanda – I did hear about that one. He was the one I posted about that his Epipen was packed away in a box. I heard his mom had one that was expired by a couple months, but from what I read the 911 Operator told her that it may not work. I still think I would have tried it. It may have given him extra time until the ambulance arrived. So very sad!!
I have a friend who has a serious peanut/tree nut allergy and I was shocked to learn he doesn’t carry an Epipen. It just seems really, really not worth the risk to me.
That is scary! So not worth it!