medic alert bracelets for toddlers?

Posted on: Sun, 02/18/2001 - 5:53am
Mir's picture
Mir
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Joined: 02/12/2001 - 09:00

p(I swear, I'm gonna stop posting so many questions soon... if you all weren't so darned helpful, I wouldn't even be doing it now!) [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]/p
pI asked the allergist's nurse (I forgot to ask him, and it was on our way out) if I should get Isaac a medic alert bracelet. She said that they generally don't recommend them until children are school aged and away from the parents a fair amount. She said "you're with him all the time right now, right?" And that answer satisfied me for most of the drive home... until I got to thinking about what if he has a reaction when with a babysitter (and she's well-informed but melts down in crisis and forgets to tell the paramedics or whatever)... or if he somehow ends up having a problem when I'm not right there. (My poor husband already thinks I'm completely loony over this... I decided NOT to share with him my morbid fantasy of a plane crash where we're killed but Isaac survives and ends up covered in little packets of peanuts....) (It's okay, go ahead and laugh!)/p
pSo, yay or nay? Does he need one? Do they make bracelets little enough for 1-year-olds?/p
pMiriam/p

Posted on: Sun, 02/18/2001 - 6:43am
Gennie's picture
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Joined: 12/21/2000 - 09:00

I put a medic alert necklace on my toddler. He broke the cheap chains several times so I used a leather lace instead. Jewelry stores, I am sure will have a sturdier chain. He learned to wear it always. Just like a car seat, they can and will get used to it. Besides an added bonus is the believability factor. People believe the medic alert over the parent even though it is the parent who orders the medic alert. Never underestimate the stupidity of people by having your toddler wear the necklace! In addition to that toddlers may not be able to communicate their condition so may need to wear it even more so than adults. Gennie

Posted on: Sun, 02/18/2001 - 8:32am
Sandra Y's picture
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Joined: 08/22/2000 - 09:00

I lost my non-verbal toddler in a children's museum for five minutes, and spent the whole 5 minutes imagining some kind-hearted person finding him and comforting him with a cookie. I think they need the Medic-Alert MORE when they are not yet verbal.

Posted on: Sun, 02/18/2001 - 9:46am
maddiesmom's picture
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Joined: 12/20/1999 - 09:00

I really recommend calling MedicAlert and looking into getting a bracelet. Our allergist made a good point about WHY I should get our 2 year old one. I stay home with her and she is pretty much with me at all times so I wasn't sure if I should wait until she was older to order one. He told me that if I was ever in a car accident and was unconscious someone might feed Madeline (our daughter) something to calm her down. He said that frequently ambulance workers carry peanut butter crackers on board their amubulance and we certainly wouldn't want anyone to feed her ANYTHING when I can't tell or if she can't tell them what she can/cannot eat. First responders and EMT's are trained to LOOK for medic alert bracelets so it would catch their eye before they feed her. Good point, huh???
Also, our daughter is now 2 1/2 and has been wearing her bracelet since she was 18 months old. She doesn't ever try to get it off, she just thinks it is part of her. We bathe in it, play in it, etc. It never comes off. It has taught her to tell people what it says. She will tell strangers in the grocery store, "Look, my bracelet. It says No Peanuts No Nuts" . People think it is so cute that she says it, but I am just so proud that she tells everyone. She is learning at such a young age to show people and let them know quickly that she is allergic.
I could go on and on. I SOOOO recommend getting your toddler a bracelet. It has been wonderful to have and makes me feel a little better that it catches peoples eye and makes them aware of her allergies. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]
Good luck!
Shandra (mom to Madeline 2 1/2)

Posted on: Mon, 02/19/2001 - 10:55pm
AmyR's picture
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Joined: 09/26/2000 - 09:00

Mir, I agree with what the others said. We got my son a medicalert bracelet a few months ago, just before turning three. He wasn't too psyched about it for the first few minutes but we really talked it up and made it sound so exciting to wear. He has it on him at all times and never even thinks about taking it off. I'm so glad he has one at this age because it has just become a part of him. I think if I waited till he was older, he'd complain about wearing it.

Posted on: Tue, 02/20/2001 - 2:10am
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Joined: 05/28/2009 - 16:42

Hi Mir! Just wanted to agree with the above, and add that I've heard that emergency personnel/hospital personnel tend to take you more seriously/respond more quickly when they see and read the medic-alert bracelet, saving precious minutes.
My two year old was initially a bit annoyed by his bracelet. We responded by saying "Where's your bracelet? There it is!! YEAH!!!" and clapping our hands...he would clap too, and laugh. Soon he had a positive association with the bracelet. Now it's just a part of him that he never seems to notice. They are easy to order, and they come in the mail pretty quickly (less than a week for ours). Good luck!

Posted on: Tue, 02/20/2001 - 2:37am
MattsMom's picture
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Joined: 09/17/2000 - 09:00

Matt is 2, and has a MedicAlert bracelet that never comes off. We wanted one for all the same reasons...car accidents, lost child, with a babysitter, getting him used to it BEFORE the age where bracelets are uncool, and to get people to take his allergy more seriously...namely, my family.
I also have a 3yo daughter (not PA) and when the MedicAlert bracelet came in, she helped me get Matt interested in it. I had told them a few days previous that Matt would be getting a special bracelet in the mail and when he did, we would take Meagan to the store and get her a bracelet. Meagan was very excited about it, and it rubbed off eventually. =) Now they both have a bracelet that stays on 24/7.
And to answer your question about bracelet size... when we called MedicAlert to order it they told us to get a bit of ribbon or string, wrap it around his wrist, mark it, and then measure it. His wrist was 4". A few days later we had a tiny little bracelet in our mailbox. =) It is big enough that the emblem flips around very easily, but tight enough that it won't go over his hand and come off. We were told that if it was able to come off over the hand, if we took it to a jewelry shop, they could take a link or two (or whatever was necessary) out for us.
Now that the kids have had their bracelet for a month, they rarely even notice them...except when we go out. Then they are showing anybody and everybody their bracelets and telling them that Matt's came in the mail and says "No nuts for Matt!" and Meagan's came from the store. lol
Sadly, though, it hasn't helped with my parents view on the allergy. They still think we're overreacting and that the best way for him to outgrow the allergy would be to continue to eat peanuts and pb in mass quantities!! He won't be spending the night w/ them any time soon, that's for sure! It has helped with friends and strangers, though. They almost immediately ask questions (and we then educate!) and they take his allergy MUCH more serious now.

Posted on: Tue, 02/20/2001 - 6:29am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

Mir,
I also strongly recommend a MedicAlert bracelet for your toddler. I know for a fact the medical personal/paramedics read them as I was standing right there when they read my son's. The paramedics read it the minute they walked into the room and the ER doctor read it when they were putting my son on the ER bed.
You can contact MedicAlert via the web at [url="http://www.medicalert.org"]www.medicalert.org[/url] and I believe soon, if not already, members can log in and update their medical history, update doctors and pharmacies via their website.
The MedicAlert bracelet speaks for itself. It's also true as MJ's mom pointed out...people take you more seriously about the allergy. They think if the *condition* is serious enough to warrant a MedicAlert bracelet, then it must be really serious.
The nurse at my son't school, when we first talked over the phone was kind of casual and then she asked me if my son had a MedicAlert bracelet and with the tone she was using, she was expecting me to say no. When I said yes, her whole demeanor changed immediately!
------------------
Stay Safe.

Posted on: Tue, 02/20/2001 - 7:18am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

There is a very good and a very long thread on MedicAlert bracelets under Living With A Peanut Allergy. I am not sure how many pages back it is.
I agree about getting a bracelet for all the reasons above but it broke my heart when my husband came home from work the day it arrived and my son said, "Look, Daddy, I can't take this off until I go to Heaven." I burst into tears!

Posted on: Tue, 02/20/2001 - 9:21pm
blackmoss's picture
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Joined: 12/26/2000 - 09:00

I know at some point I need to get something a bracelet/whatever for Stephen. However, at the moment I have a six month old and everything goes into his mouth. At what age what you get one?? I have all his info on my key chain and in wallet and on and in his diaper bag. I am not too worried about someone feeding him (but I am beginning to as now everywhere we go eat the host/hostess always offers us a child's menu) I always have a bottle ready since he's not on a regular formula. Any suggestions?
Jami

Posted on: Tue, 02/20/2001 - 10:02pm
Mir's picture
Mir
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Joined: 02/12/2001 - 09:00

Thank you all for your input! I called MedicAlert last night and ordered Isaac's bracelet. The lady told me they were going to put "Anaphylaxis to peanuts" on it and I agreed and then when I got off the phone I thought OH NO what if a layperson reads that and doesn't know what anaphylaxis means?? My husband immediately started making fun of me ("Hmmmm, anaphylaxis to peanuts? That must mean he really likes them! Here ya go!" LOL). But I guess in the makes-people-take-it-seriously vein that was probably the right thing to put on there.
I told the lady on the phone that Isaac's only 13 months and she said that he'll probably fiddle with it for a couple of days and then forget that it's there. She also told me that they'll replace the chain for any reason free of charge for 5 years. So I guess we just put it on and hope for the best. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]
Miriam

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