Catrina Quintana is a stay at home mother and home schools her two boys. Aadyn is her oldest and is eight years old with no known food allergies or intolerances. Asher is six years old and has asthma, allergies to peanuts and tree nuts, and has many other food sensitivities. There is no history of food allergies in their family. However, Catrina’s grandmother has food intolerance to seafood, but she didn’t develop this until she was in her 70’s.
nebulizer and quickly ran to a close store to get Benadryl. Catrina held her son tightly and soon after, Asher was fine and off playing again. She decided to call the doctor’s office. They were able to see Asher right away and advised her set up an appointment to see an allergist. Looking back, Catrina would have handled this situation differently, but she said, “I had no idea the severity of the situation.”
The second severe reaction occurred during his skin testing at the allergist’s office. At the time, Asher was four years old. Within 30 seconds of the skin testing, his back was really bad. He was pale, crying, his voice was raspy and his stomach hurt. The allergist didn’t administer an Epipen, but they closely monitored him for a long time. Catrina said, “It felt like forever.” The allergist then informed them of Asher’s food allergies
I asked Catrina to share some of the challenges she and her family have faced and she said that her biggest obstacle has been family members that just do not get how serious it is. There have been many times when she has tried to explain the severity of Asher’s food allergies, but at family functions they continue to serve desserts with peanuts and tree nuts. Catrina has learned that no matter how hard you try, others are never going to understand how hard it is to have a child with life threatening food allergies.
situation. I want him to be whatever he wants to be.”
I feel like they are all very similar to mine. In the beginning, we didn’t know what signs to look for or what to do. There needs to be more education about food allergies early on. Parents need this information before it happens. There needs to be some type of education given to new parents regarding signs of food allergies and anaphylaxis. I wish this could start in the pediatricians’ office. Why can’t it? When I brought my son’s food allergic reactions to my pediatrician’s attention, they were dismissed. I trusted what they told me and so I ignored the signs. There needs to be more education not only with new parents, but with all doctors caring for our babies and our children.