Writing about food allergies from a pediatric allergist's perspective

Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Awareness Pop-culture Campaign

Inspired to empower and educate, we proudly present our  Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Awareness Pop-culture Campaign to educate and empower adolescents, young adults, and the young at heart.

Written by Michael Pistiner MD, MMSc

Teenagers and young adults are the highest risk group for food allergy related death

got epinephrine?Teenagers and young adults are the highest risk group for food allergy related death.  When looking back on collections of cases of fatal and near fatal allergic reactions studies showed that 75% of the recorded cases were between the ages of 12 and 22 and in close to 85% there was a delay or lack of  administration of the life saving epinephrine. (Bock SA, Muñoz-Furlong A, Sampson HA. J Allergy Clin Immunol 2001; 107:191.), (Bock SA, Muñoz-Furlong A, Sampson HA. 2001-2006. J Allergy Clin Immunol 2007; 119:1016).Other studies demonstrate that teenagers and young adults at times compromise food allergy management strategies and are influenced by social circumstances and their peers. (Sampson, M.A., Munoz-Furlong, A. and Sicherer, S.H. “Risk-taking and coping strategies of adolescents and young adults with food allergy.” Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology 117.6 (2006): 1440-5),(Monks, H. et al. “How do teenagers manage their food allergies?” Clinical and Experimental Allergy 40.10 (2010): 1533-1540).

Tackling the serious issues of food allergy and anaphylaxis with a twist

If you like it then it better have a label on itInspired to empower and educate this “high risk” group  we launched our Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Awareness Facebook Campaign using pop-culture to educate and empower adolescents, young adults, and the young at heart. We tackle very serious issues and put a spin that will hopefully engage and spark the interest of our highest risk population. We started a bit over a year ago and continue to try to hammer home critical and serious messages through wit and humor. Additionally, we’ve expanded our target to include young children and their caregivers using familiar and fun images and ideas. Topics range from supporting peers, preventing accidental exposures, emergency preparedness, to being proud of taking good care of ourselves.  We share these messages through social media and have created Posters at AllergyHome to house over thirty, free, printable, 8 1/2 x 11 inch posters, along with explanations, to help deliver these important messages to those with food allergies and their surrounding communities.

Spread Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Awareness

Food Allergy: It's No JokePlease help us share these pop-culture messages and spread food allergy awareness and understanding where it’s most needed. Schools are an important target with school nurses, teachers, principals, nutrition services, PTA/PTOs, healthcare providers, all students and all families being key players in spreading providing support for our highest risk population.

Food Allergy snd Anaphylaxis Awareness Week 2015

May the auto-injectors be with youIn preparation for food allergy awareness week please consider passing this along to your middle school and high school communities and posting and sharing these messages with those in your communities.  Enjoy!

Additionally, check out our Food Allergy Awareness Week Elementary School Kit, designed to help elementary schools to prepare for food allergy awareness week.

Visit our Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest pages and join us in spreading food allergy and anaphylaxis awareness.

1 Comment
  1. Thank you so much for this site…I worry all the time about my 12 year old as he becomes more independent.

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