5 Things Every Nut-Free Household Needs

Boy about to eat peaanuts

There are a lot of unfortunate myths about nut allergies.

They’re over-diagnosed. They’re all in the minds of overprotective parents. They’re not that serious.

But as parents of kids with peanut or tree nut allergies – and as a maker of nut-free candy – we know better. These allergies are very real and very serious and living with them can mean making significant changes to the way your family lives.

If your child has just been diagnosed with a nut allergy, here are a few things you’ll need to make your life in your house easier and safer.

1. Medical professionals you trust

Allergy doctor testing child for allergies

One of the first things you’ll need to do is find doctors that you trust.

“Typically, a board-certified pediatric allergist is the specialist of choice to advise families and prescribe epinephrine auto-injectors,” writes Caroline Bologna in a Huffington Post piece on advice for parents of children with nut allergies.

She also spoke with parents who recommend shopping around until you find the doctor that’s the best fit for your child.

“Don’t worry about offending people because it’s your child’s safety at stake,” said Becky Bergman, founder of the Peanut Allergy Mom blog and mother of a teenage son with a peanut allergy. “If they’re not the right fit they’re not the right fit.”

2. A plan for avoiding allergic reactions

The only sure way for your child to avoid allergic reaction is to keep away from foods that trigger symptoms. It often only takes a trace of an allergen to cause a reaction.

Avoid those reactions by:

Woman reading lbel for nut safety
  • Paying close attention to food labels each time you buy food products, even ones you’ve bought before, as ingredients can change. Teach your child to read labels when they get old enough
  • Let your child’s school, friends and relatives know about the allergy diagnosis.
  • Ask about the ingredients in dishes other people make for your children.
  • Wash your hands and your child’s hands with soap and water before handling food. Prepare and serve food with clean kitchen items and on clean surfaces.

Try to focus on the foods your child can have rather than what they need to avoid. You can even try out new recipes that use safe ingredients. And thanks to the advent of nut-free candy, they can still enjoy the same sweets their peers cherish.

2. A keen eye for allergy symptoms

No matter how vigilant you are, it’s still possible that your child will be exposed to allergens. If that’s the case, you need to be able to recognize the symptoms, which include:

Child with allergic reaction
  • Rashes, hives and itching
  • Swelling of the lips, tongue and throat
  • Difficulty breathing, wheezing, shortness of breath
  • Dizziness and/or fainting
  • Stomach pain, diarrhea and vomiting
  • Panicky/uneasy feelings

Your child’s doctor can provide you with a complete list of symptoms. Some allergy symptoms can be severe, leading to a potentially life threatening allergic reaction known as anaphylaxis, which we’ll deal with in the next section.

3. A plan for dealing with anaphylaxis

Talk to your child’s doctor about how to recognize the signs of anaphylaxis and how to treat it. You can prepare yourself by:

  • Working with the doctor to create an emergency plan for dealing with anaphylaxis
  • Learn how to administer epinephrine shots to your child. This drug comes in a safe, easy to use auto-injector and is the medicine of choice for treating anaphylaxis.
  • Always make sure there are two epinephrine auto-injectors close at hand and teach the people who are with your child when you’re not there how to use them.

You may also want to get your child a medical alert bracelet to let people know about their allergy.

4. A good support system

Moms support group discussing their kids allergies

Finally, it’s important to remember that you’re not alone. Nut allergy diagnoses may be on the rise, but the silver lining here is that you’ll have an easier time finding other parents in your community who have been where you are.

As the Huffington Post story puts it, “A group of fellow allergy parents can help by answering questions, hearing out rants or even just being there to drink a bottle of wine and cry during hard times.”

Searching for nut-free candy options? Skip’s Candies is your source

Nut-free chocolate Butterfly pop

Since 1993, Skip’s Candies has prided itself on providing the finest candy options. We proudly provide nut-free candy to retail and wholesale customers alike.

For the last eight years, we’ve operated a dedicated nut-free facility, ensuring that the raw materials we purchase come from manufacturers who either work in nut-free facilities or have dedicated nut-free areas and/or adhere to safe handling practices.

Contact us today to learn more about our nut-free candy and our facility. We’re confident we have something everyone in your family will enjoy.

Why Nut Free Options Are Important

My throat was feeling weird, but I dismissed it. Then six hours later, I couldn’t breathe. My inhaler didn’t help, and I didn’t have my EpiPen. I had to call an ambulance. It’s dangerous because you don’t know how well they clean stuff, and I usually don’t know what exactly gave me a reaction.”

That’s an allergen-sufferer named Sewa describing their life with a peanut allergy to the news website Vice in 2017.

It was a story called “We Asked People What It’s Like to Live with Deadly Food Allergies,” and as you can probably imagine, it’s not very pleasant.

No peanuts symbol

Living with allergies goes beyond – as the article puts it – just not being able to enjoy Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups or Nutella in a world that treats them like the food of the gods. Being allergic to peanuts can mean facing serious – if not deadly – health consequences if you eat the wrong thing.

Food allergies – including peanut allergies – affect millions of people every year. It’s something we’re all too aware of as a maker and provider of wholesale nut-free chocolate and candy.

In this blog post, we’ll explore why nut allergies should be taken seriously and why nut-free options are important.

What are the symptoms of a peanut allergy?

Symptoms of peanut allergies include:

  • Itching or tingly in the mouth or throat
  • Hives
  • Nausea
  • Congestion or a runny nose

The most serious – but thankfully less common – symptom is anaphylaxis, a dangerous whole-body reaction to peanuts or other allergens. Symptoms include trouble breathing, swelling in the throat, dizziness or fainting, a sudden loss of blood pressure, and blue lips or pale skin.

Unless epinephrine – adrenaline – is injected right away, anaphylaxis can prove deadly.

How many kids have peanut allergies?

Peanut Allergy Growth in American Children

It’s a growing number, according to a 2017 report from the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. Their findings suggest that the number of children with peanut allergies in America has grown by 21 percent since 2010.

The ACAAI also concluded that 2.5 percent of all children in America may have a peanut allergy.

How can I manage my child’s peanut allergy?

Parents who have children with peanut or food allergies know that keeping them safe means more than just “stay away from that food.”

You need to stay vigilant. Here are a few ways you can make sure your child stays safe.

  • Be ready for a serious allergic reaction by keeping epinephrine injectors with you at all times and making sure you know how to use them.
  • Have your child wear a medical ID bracelet.
  • Read labels. Even a trace amount of peanuts can be deadly. Food makers are required by law to state when their product contains peanuts or other allergens.
  • Avoid cross contact at home by keeping your kitchen clean to prevent allergens from spreading.
  • Talk to your child’s school and summer camp about their allergy. Find out more about their food preparation and cleaning procedures. The same goes for restaurants.

Skip’s Candies is your source for wholesale nut-free chocolate

Chocolate Covered Marshmallows

For more than 25 years, Skip’s Candies has dedicated itself to providing the best in retial and wholesale nut-free chocolate and candies.

In 2011, we opened a dedicated nut-free facility and purchase our raw materials and finished products from manufacturers who either work in a nut-free environment or have dedicated nut-free areas and/or follow safe cleaning and handling practices. Contact us today to learn more about our retail and wholesale nut-free chocolate options.