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Kids with Latex Allergy
When one thinks of Latex Allergy, they usually think of health care workers. This is understandable because according to one study, 12.5% of HCWs have a natural rubber latex allergy. However, this page is a reminder for all of us that there are also children who are unnecessarily suffering from this horrible allergy as well. These children cannot advocate for themselves, so we parents and adults must do it for them.
I've created this web page to help spread the word about Latex Allergy. There are quite a few other very good websites and pages available online, but the more we speak of the terrible implications of this allergy, the better we are heard!
My 12-year-old daughter, Zoë, (see Zoë's Page) has a Natural Rubber Latex Allergy. This means that if she is exposed to anything which contains natural rubber, she may break out in a rash or hives; she could sneeze, cough, or become congested; or she could have a more serious reaction such as difficulty breathing, asthma, or anaphylaxis. Although some people have laughed at my "Stop the Sensitization" button (perhaps immediately thinking I don't like condoms), Latex Allergy is not a joke. It is an aggravating and serious allergy in part because it is very difficult to steer clear of natural rubber latex, in the home, in the medical setting, and in public.
Sample Letter to Principal to ban latex balloons in your school!!
Latex-Free Therapy Equipment and Medical Equipment used with children who have disabilities. A small list, but with your queries it will grow.
Children and Latex Allergy
Emergency Procedures Help
Whether at daycare, on a weekend visit, or at school, certain guidelines can help prepare your child and his/her caregiver for a serious reaction. While the following may not relate strictly to natural rubber latex allergy, they may help you to write your own procedure for dealing with an emergency.
Hospitalizations and Surgery
Since children are sensitized so early in life, it's important to do everything possible to avoid unnecessary exposure. Hospitalizations and surgeries are challenging because most hospitals are not powder-free. The less time in a hospital, the better, as it reduces the chance of accidental or inhalation exposure. It's a good idea to take your own Caution sign for the door and some allergy stickers for the chart.
When calling manufacturers for latex content, remember to ask about natural rubber content also. Recently a wheelchair company told me proudly that there was no latex in their wheelchair tires. However, the manufacturer (different company) stated that the tires are a natural/synthetic rubber compound! Maddening!