Area schools adopting policies for kids with food allergies

Area schools adopting policies for kids with food allergies

Amarillo, TX - Severe allergies are becoming more common among children.

It's so common that our area is now taking measures to help.

Nationwide one in every 13 students has a food allergy, that's around two children in every classroom.

Amarillo ISD says they've seen an increase every year and some area doctors say they've seen a dramatic increase over the past two decades.

Signs of a reaction include skin rashes, wheezing, tightness in the throat or difficulty breathing.

Experts have yet to determine the cause of food allergies but there are several theories on how to prevent them from occurring.

"I still advise parents to stay away from the high allergy foods until the kids are about 12 months of age. The one's that I think of as being high allergy are eggs, corn, strawberry's, chocolate, nuts, peanuts, peanut butter, strong citrus like orange or grapefruit, shellfish and whole milk," says Dr. Meganne Walsh, Pediatrician.

Over 15 percent of children have a severe allergic reaction at school.

That's why every public and charter school in Texas is now required to implement a food allergy policy by August 1st.

Guidelines suggest mandatory training for school staff, as well as access to epi-pens in case of an allergic reaction.