August 12, 2009

Latex Allergy Awareness

My daughter has a severe latex allergy. I am posting this blog today because for the 4th time this summer, she was unable to eat at an event due to the food being handled with latex gloves. She completed two separate 5Ks and couldn't eat at the buffet after, she couldn't eat at a clubhouse barbeque party, and today couldn't eat the sandwiches at her band luncheon. That is just this summer.

Her allergy causes her to swell horribly, like a beesting sort of reaction. We prefer not to have that happen to her throat after she ate something handled with latex. She gets hives when she wears clothing with certain kinds of elastic, she spent an evening after Trick or Treating not eating candy but popping Benedryl. Someone had handed out candy with gloves on.

She went to a Red Cross babysitting class and her station had a pair of latex gloves. Even though they removed the gloves after she told them of her allergy, the powder still was in the area. Her eyes swelled shut when she touched them after handling the practice doll.

She has to avoid balloon parties and be careful what sort of bandages she uses on a cut. She had a visitor to the school bring balloons in a secret grab bag for the kids, it resulted in an afternoon in the nurse's office, just from touching it.

I am not trying to be a drama queen, but rather bring a level of awareness to my readers and hopefully pass this post along. Allergies like this are often progressive so we do what we can to avoid contact, but it seems to be everywhere. Many many common items contain latex and most people think it's just an itchy reaction. For my daughter and many others, it is much more serious.

In short, very few people are aware of this allergy and often times, think they are being germ conscious, when in fact they could trigger a life threatening (thank goodness not yet, her breathing has never been affected) allergy.



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