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Hi everyone, my name is Melanie and I have a son, Luke, who is 2 and it was just confirmed a few weeks ago that he is allergic to peanuts. He had a reaction (hives) to eating a PB sandwich when he was about 17 months old, and though I should have expected that the allergy test would prove him to be PA, I was really not anticipating it. I guess you could call that "denial". Anyway, I have lurked a little trying to find all the information I can. I am having trouble accepting that even stuff he ate up until a few weeks ago, he cannot have now (plain M & M's, bakery items, certain ice creams, etc.) He is a picky eater and now what do I do about finding a decent treat for him? And what do we do about Halloween????? All these questions.....hopefully you guys will help me find answers. Thanks for listening.

Melanie

On Feb 24, 2004

Melanie,

Hi. Welcome to the site! My dd is 3 yrs old. She was diagnosed at 18 mos. old. Before her tests she never had a reaction to peanuts and ate them all the time. We still avoided them, but I too have always been in denial. Until yesterday. She went and had a food challenge, and didn't pass. She got a huge hive on her cheek after ingesting.

Anyway. On to the snacks. I have found lots of things I feel comfortable with. Please check the label of anything I list as it may be manufactured different where you live. I'm sure you knew that just wanted to be on the safe side. I have not contacted the companies I usually trust the labels although that's not always a good idea, but so far we have had no problems.

The only granola bars I've found are Kelloggs Nutrigrain Granola Bars and Granola Bites.

For candy bars she has Hersheys plain chocolate, Rolos, Sixlets, Hersheys cookies and Cream, and Milk Duds. I can't think of any others at the moment. The label on the sixlets says nothing about peanuts, but I have not checked around about them yet.

Other candies she has are skittles, life savers, trolli sour worms, star burst, air head taffy, sweet tarts, and others.

The fruit snacks, fruit roll ups, and fruit by the foot she's done fine with. Hunts and Kraft Pudding Cups. Kids yogurt. Jell-o. There are so many things. Keep in mind I have not checked all of the flavors, but all that we've had have been ok.

Also Krispy Kreme donuts are awesome. We were so happy a few months ago when we found the thread about them being safe. She has had them a few times since and had no problems. We also can have Hostess products here. Twinkies, donuts, ding dongs, cupcakes. Stuff like that. We haven't tried everything, but they are supposed to be safe. The muffins are not safe. There is places that hostess is not safe. They aren't always manufactured the same way in different states..

My dd has been very good about her PA & TNA. She almost always asks if it's not something she recognizes. She also never fusses about the things she's not allowed to have. She was 18 mos when we had to take away the things she was used to and it never was a problem. She was so used to grabbing the tube of mini m&m's and once I started saying no no it has peanuts she caught on fast. Just keep telling him the things that have peanuts and tell him that peanuts make him sick. It worked with my dd.

Halloween worked ok for us. We knew things that were safe for her at that time. We let the people put the treats in her bucket and whatever we knew had peanuts or questioned we put into a different bag to throw away. You have to do this after leaving each house. They are so sneaky at this age they might open it with out you knowing in a split second.

Easter is what I'm still trying to figure out. I couldn't find one chocolate bunny last year that was safe. Easter has lots of unsafe candy.

If you have any questions feel free to ask me or others. I'll try not to make it so long next time. Hope this helps you out.

Angie & Hunter PA & TNA

On Feb 24, 2004

Thank you Angie! Your information is so helpful and I feel a lot better about the snacks! That is a lot of great ideas. Does anyone besides me get irked now just at the mere mention of peanuts? Now that I'm so sensitive to it, it seems like everyone everywhere talks about peanuts all the time!!! Makes me crazy! I think I am going through the stages of grief, and am currently in the anger stage. At least I am moving along toward acceptance. LOL. Thanks again.

Melanie

On Feb 25, 2004

Hi Melanie

I too am new to the site. My 4 year old son is highly allergic to all nuts, especially peanuts and we had it confirmed via a blood test about 6 months ago. We found out the hard way (at 18 months) by letting Max have a bite of his cousins peanut butter and jelly sandwich and he started having a reaction almost immediatley. We had to rush him to the emergency room and he stopped breathing on the way. It was horrifying to say the least to watch your 18 month old son blow up like a balloon and there is not a whole lot you can do. The good news is he is fine now and we have taken as many precautions as we can to ensure that he is safe but I must say it is an uphill battle.

You have to read every label. Ingredients are ever changing. I learned that through Pillsbury ready to bake sugar cookies. All along they have had no traces of peanuts and all of a sudden when Max was at school they were going to make the moms valentines with these sugar cookies and something made me read the label and sure enough Pillsbury has added peanut flour to their sugar cookies to make them taste better??!! It makes no sense but that is the response I got when I called and e-mailed both them and General Mills.

I really like this website. It is a great resource for people like us who just want to protect our PA children.

Now that I have babbled on about my story, the reason you emiled was to see what treats you can give your son Luke. Well I find with Max that the way to get around M&M's is to give him skittles. We call them pretend M&M's. He knows they are not M&M's and he is getting something much more special. I dont usually give my son chocolate of any kind so as not to confuse him. Sometimes we make Nestle toll house cookies with the semi sweet morsels as a treat. Its fun and they are safe. Max also likes Sweettarts, and Starbursts. He can have dum dum lollipops or charms lollipops. These are great to have at Halloween time too.

We take Max trick or treating with the neighborhood kids but he knows not to eat anything without us telling him it is OK. Actually this year was very funny, when he would get a goody from someone he would turn around, hold it up and yell does this have peanuts mom? If I said yes he would say "thank you anyway but I am allergic to peanuts" to the person. We were amazed.

If you are still squirmish about the whole Halloween/trick or treating thing have a party for him and his friends. We did that last year too and it was alot of fun. The kids loved it and I knew he was safe. If he is invited to a birthday party or something similar just make sure you talk to the parents and explain the situation. If you are not comfortable dont send him to the party. Just do something else with him that is special.

I have found that some people are really good about it and some just dont get it. They hear allergic and they think Max will get a rash or something. They just dont understand that exposure can be life threatening. It is truly frustrating sometimes.

Some other snack ideas are those fruit snacks by Betty Crocker or Brachs. They are fruit juice chews that look like different characters ususally located in a cereal aisle. I find too that it is really fun to make things with Max. He loves to help me mix things. If all else fails make your own snacks. Muffins, cookies, jello wigglers, yogurts come in lots of flavors that kids love...Trix, Stonybrook Farm, Go gurts. Pretzels, Pepridge Farm Goldfish, Teddy Grahams, Regular Oreos.

I hope these ideas help you. It is a struggle but know that you are not alone in this.

Be well and good luck.

Julie

On Feb 26, 2004

Thank you Julie! I appreciate your ideas and suggestions more than you could possibly know! I hate that any of us have to deal with it, but it is nice to know that we aren't alone. I am really nervous and anxious about this but I know I will adjust and learn enough to know how to keep my son as safe as possible. Thanks again!

Melanie

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