With August here, thoughts are turning to “back to school.” While understandably a great deal of attention is being paid to keeping safe from COVID-19, parents of children with allergies or asthma have additional concerns in keeping their children healthy. The American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology offers a number of strategies to avoid allergies and asthma flares at school. The five guidelines include:
- Keep all viruses at bay. These can negatively impact those with asthma. “Encourage your kids to mask up, wash hands, and use hand sanitizer whenever possible.”
- Take the usual precautions, avoiding triggers. New carpeting can be a problem, as well as open windows that let pollen drift in, even the class pet. Meet and discuss concerns with the teacher and school administrator beforehand.
- Be on the lookout for food allergens. Eating at home during the summertime can make a child less vigilant about allergens. Inform the school of food allergies and together with the school develop an action plan that includes: the food your child is allergic to, what treatment needs to be given, and emergency contact information.
- Prevent the flu – get the flu vaccine.(1)