Peanut/ Food Allergies
Nearly every school has or has had a student with a nut or peanut allergy. School administrators want to keep your child safe, so speak with a principal, teacher, Dietary and/or school nurse about setting up a safe nut - or a peanut-free environment if your child is allergic to them and an action plan in case your child has a reaction while in school.
An allergy is an abnormal response to a food, medication, environmental agent, or animal. An allergic reaction is triggered by the body’s immune system. Reactions vary from person to person. Some may be mild and some may be severe, leading to life-threatening symptoms and even death. Anaphylaxis is defined as:
- a severe, life-threatening allergic reaction
- a well-defined antigen-antibody reaction
- a hypersensitive state of the body to a foreign protein or a drug, food, medication, insect bite, latex, etc.
- sudden in its development and may be fatal.
Signs and symptoms of a severe allergic reaction to food or another agent may include some or all of the following:
|BODY SYSTEM||SIGN OR SYMPTOM|
|Mouth||Tingling, itching, swelling of the tongue, lips, or mouth; blue/grey color of the lips|
|Throat||Tightening of the throat; tickling feeling in the back of throat, hoarseness or change in voice|
|Nose/Eyes/Ears||Runny, itchy nose; redness and /or swelling of eyes; throbbing in ears|
|Lungs||Shortness of breath, repetitive shallow cough; wheezing|
Nausea; vomiting; diarrhea; abdominal cramps
|Skin||Itchy rash; hives, swelling of face or extremities; facial flushing|
|Heart||Thin weak pulse; rapid pulse; palpitations; fainting; blueness of lips, face or nail beds; paleness|
On the Rise
Food allergies have risen in incidence. Current estimates state that between every 1 in 13 and 1 in 25 school-aged children are affected. 40% of those children have reported a history of a severe reaction. The eight most common food allergies that account for 90% of food allergy reactions are milk, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, fish, shellfish, soy, and wheat (National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases [National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease] (NIAID), 2010).
In response to the rise in food allergies and to increase community awareness, Senate Bill 27 amends Chapter 38 of the Texas Education Code by adding Section 38.0151. A policy must be adopted by school districts to care for students with food allergies.
If your child has a specific food allergy, please contact the Cafeteria and school nurse at your child's campus. Allergy notice forms can be found below.