Sporting Events and peanuts

Posted on: Thu, 11/09/2006 - 7:02am
PA mom in AL's picture
Joined: 11/08/2006 - 09:00

My son has a PA;it was dianosed when he was 3 months old. He has never had a severe allergic reaction, but is very sensitive to testing. We live in a college town and like to frequent sporting events (football, baseball, basketball games). The first time my husband and I took our son to a baseball game we panicked because peanuts were everywhere. People were eating them all around us and the wind was blowing peanut dust and shells everywhere. We left shortly after arriving and beat ourselves up for not thinking about the availability of peanuts and putting our son in danger.
We have not taken our son to a sporting event since. My son is almost 3 years old now and I know that he is going to begin to realize that he is being left behind. Does anyone have any suggestions on how to make these events safer for my son? What do you do when you attend a sporting event? We obviously can't control what everyone around us is eating. It is so scary.
Has anyone heard of children outgrowing peanut allergies? My doctor says there is a slim chance.

P/A Mom

Posted on: Thu, 11/09/2006 - 7:55am
anonymous's picture
Joined: 05/28/2009 - 16:42

We just went to a college basketball game last night. They don't happen to sell peanuts at the concession there. Of course, they sell stuff with peanuts in them, like Cracker Jack. But mostly what I have seen other people get at the concession is pretzels, nachos, and soft drinks (no beer). Even less scary than lunch at school.

Posted on: Thu, 11/09/2006 - 9:08am
kellyhensl's picture
Joined: 03/23/2000 - 09:00

My son is now 16 and was diagnosed PA at 8 months old. Knock on wood, he has never had a reaction. We are very careful. When he was young we took him to a Giants baseball game. The place had tons of peanuts and the wind was blowing them all over. We had him cover himself completely with his jacket and quickly left. Have never been back. It is sad that there are certain things he has to miss, but all his life he's been able to play baseball, soccer, karate, track and has been fine. I don't keep him in a bubble, but I have also drilled it into his head of how allergic he is and the care that he has to take.
When he was first tested, he was off the charts (I was given a number of over 2000 when over 250 is analphylactic) His most recent test I think a year ago or so was 2.26 which means he's a class 2 as between 0.71 and 3.50 is class 2. So he has gone down in his allergy. I'm sure strict avoidance has had an influence. He's still allergic and we still take all the same precautions. He's a very picky eater. Sometimes it is extremely difficult.
Thinking about college is another matter to deal with. Can we all be comfortable with sending him off to school and have him be completely independent and self-sufficient. These are all tough questions. Yet, somehow we manage and deal with things as they come up.
Missing out on things has been part of our lives, but I've also made sure that he's been treated to other things to make sure that he feels just like the rest of the world. He is a normal, typical "teenager" just with special precautions.

Posted on: Thu, 11/09/2006 - 9:13am
BriandBrinasmom's picture
Joined: 10/20/2006 - 09:00

I think it depends on your child. My son has gone to several Cubs games (corporate box - nice digs) and had no trouble with the peanut shells. He just didn't eat them and washed his hands after.
I don't believe anyone actually knows why some children outgrow peanut allergies. Avoiding them is obviously a good idea, but I wouldn't fall into the trap of beating yourself up if your child isn't in the magical 20% of kids who outgrow them. My understanding is that it has a lot more to do with the type of protein a child is allergic to and whether they have other food allergies than it does to parent vigilance. It may be that there are two ways kids get food allergies - one of them short term and one of them not.

Posted on: Thu, 11/09/2006 - 12:50pm
Carefulmom's picture
Joined: 01/03/2002 - 09:00

My own personal opinion is that to go to a baseball game where there are peanuts everywhere is an airborne exposure, whether or not the person reacts. I am not talking about the places where they sell Snickers and Cracker Jacks. I am talking about peanut shells all over the place and peanut dust in the air, which is pretty common at ball games. For that reason I have never taken dd. It is so common for people who were not airborne sensitive to become airborne sensitive as they get exposed over and over. For that reason I won`t take her. It`s just part of having pa, just like limiting our vacations to places where the no peanut airlines fly.

Posted on: Thu, 11/09/2006 - 3:26pm
sacena's picture
Joined: 07/31/2006 - 09:00

I had tickets this past season for a Red Sox game. I contacted the Red Sox to ask if they have special seating. I had no luck. They did tell me that they have a peanut free day and I should contact them in February for the next season. I guess they don't sell peanuts that day. I'm sure I would be scrubbing everything down when we sat down though.
Some sports arenas may have peanut free areas. The chances of finding something is probably slim, but it's worth a shot if your son really wants to go.
Good luck.

Posted on: Thu, 11/09/2006 - 5:46pm
Sandra Y's picture
Joined: 08/22/2000 - 09:00

We're not very sporty, so my son hasn't been to lots of these events, but he's been to professional soccer and Cubs baseball. Since it's outdoors, plenty of fresh air, I wasn't too concerned about it. He was fine and enjoyed himself.

Posted on: Thu, 11/09/2006 - 10:34pm
saknjmom's picture
Joined: 04/02/2003 - 09:00

We have taken DS to a lot of sporting events at Madison Square Garden as well as Mellon Arena in Pittsburgh.
We have been fortunate that no one around us has ever been outright eating peanuts, except at a hocky game in Pittsburgh.
We always wipe off the arm rests, scan the area visually and proceed.
We went to a hockey game in Pittsburgh last year and this really old man was eating peanuts in the shell. We walked as far away from him as possible. By the end of the game when we left, the guy had peanut shells and dust all over his face, all on the front of his jacket. It was just disgusting. He just dropped the shells right on the floor.
I think 3 is still a bit young even for the most enthusiastic sports fans....although I guess we took DS to Rangers/penguins game when he was 3 and it was the highlight of the month. He was so excited, but at 8 years old, doesn't really remember it.

Posted on: Thu, 11/09/2006 - 11:33pm
krc's picture
Joined: 01/16/2007 - 09:00

I would not take dd to a sporting event that served peanuts in the shell. Cracker jacks , yes. People cracking peanuts? NO.
DD had a rx years back in a situation similar. Things turned out ok- but next time could be worse. I will never do it again. Too risky. Shells everywhere, residue on seats, peanut dust flying through the air...
It stinks that there are certain events that we simply can't attend. How do we make it safe for our children? The only way for us personally is if they quit selling peanuts in the shell. Maybe there is hope for it someday if enough people request this??

Posted on: Thu, 11/09/2006 - 11:47pm
Kathy L.'s picture
Joined: 07/30/1999 - 09:00

We went to a minor-league game as someone had given us great tickets. Wow, it was really scary. Piles of peanuts & shells everywhere. We couldn't relax. When my dd had to go to the bathroom, we had to take this convaluted route to avoid the spent shells. I didn't let her touch anything. We were on constant alert for nearby peanut eaters. My husband did ask the couple eating behind us not to throw the shells on the ground, and they were very nice about it.
DH was offered tickets again, but we declined. Another co-worker remarked after the game that he didn't realize how many peanuts were around. Nobody does until it's pointed out.
The good news is that some stadiums have a peanut-free section during certain games, mostly due to the hard work of food allergy support groups. So you should call your local stadium and see if they have this type of thing in their plans for the year.

Posted on: Fri, 11/10/2006 - 2:11am
TarynsDad's picture
Joined: 02/14/2006 - 09:00

I have taken my PA 4 year old daughter to a few Texas Ranger games last year. It was a little different because we did have a corp suite so I could control what went on in there. She had a great time at every game.....With that said, I think she is too young to sit in the stands because of the PA. She cant sit still for that length of time so I worry about her with the peanut shells all over.....In a couple years I will bring her though.


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