DALLAS COUNTY SCHOOLS ANNUAL STAFF TRAINING FOOD ALLERGY BASICS
HOW COMMON ARE FOOD ALLERGIES Approximately 8% of children and 4% of adults have food allergies. An equal number are estimated to have serious allergic reaction to things like insect bites and environmental elements. We estimate approximately 160 students and staff members at DCR1 have serious food allergies.
COMMON ALLERGIES Milk Peanuts and nuts Eggs Wheat Fish or shellfish Soy Bee stings Latex Some unidentified allergies like perfumes or cleaning supplies
COMMON SYMPTOMS Trouble swallowing Shortness of breath Coughing or voice change Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, or cramping Swelling, hives or rashes Drop in blood pressure Loss of consciousness
WHAT IS ANAPHYLAXIS? A serious reaction that is rapid in onset and may cause death Individuals with food allergy and asthma are at a greater risk 300,000 children under age 18 each year in the United States are taken to the ER or doctor each year for anaphylaxis Prompt administration of epinephrine is key to surviving anaphylaxis (such as EpiPen)
HOW COMMON IS ANAPHYLAXIS? Of children with food allergies, 15% have had an allergic reaction while at school Approximately 20-25% of epinephrine administrations in schools involve individuals whose allergies were unknown at the time. Once a reaction begins, there is not way to know how severe it will become, so, expect the worst and act accordingly immediately.
REACT IMMEDIATELY Once you notice the warning signs, immediately contact your school’s medical personnel and administrator. If they are not immediately available, contact 911 for a medical emergency. Most students with allergies will have an intervention plan, but, remember up to 25% of anaphylaxis incidents take place with students with unknown allergies.
KEY POINTS Reactions can occur anywhere in the schools. Early recognition and treatment of anaphylaxis is imperative and life-saving. If a school medical professional is not immediately available and a person is exhibiting the symptoms discussed, contact 911 immediately.
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