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Medical IDs for Nut Allergy

 

A medical ID is recommended for individuals diagnosed with a tree nut allergy. When a person consumes food containing nuts, their immune system overreacts to proteins found in it. Allergic reactions may begin with less severe symptoms but can quickly get worse, in the most severe cases it can lead to life-threatening anaphylaxis.

A tree nut allergy is one of the most common food allergies in both adults and children. This form of allergy affects roughly 0.5 to 1% of the US population.

 

"When a child has a tree nut allergy, coming into contact with even small amounts of tree nuts can cause a life-threatening reaction...Have your child wear a medical alert bracelet or necklace with his or her allergy information." - Fairview Health Services


Difference Between Tree Nut and Peanut Allergy

 

It is important to note that peanuts and tree nuts are not the same. While individuals with a peanut allergy may also be allergic to tree nuts, understanding the difference between these two nut categories is critical for those diagnosed with severe allergies. Tree nuts include walnut, almond, hazelnut, cashew, pistachio and Brazil nuts. Peanuts are legumes or seeds, such as sunflower or sesame. Although different, both types of allergies can cause serious allergic reactions. A medical ID is recommended for all types of nut and peanut allergies.


Examples of tree nuts:

  • Almonds
  • Brazil nuts
  • Cashews
  • Chestnuts
  • Filberts
  • Hazelnuts
  • Hickory nuts
  • Macadamia nuts
  • Pecans
  • Pine nuts
  • Pistachios
  • Walnuts

 

Source: WebMD


Tree Nut Allergy Emergency and Medical IDs

 

According to the American Academy of Allergy Asthma & Immunology, reactions to tree nuts can be severe, including life threatening anaphylaxis. Individuals with a tree nut allergy should have epinephrine available at all times.

Every second counts in an allergic reaction. Wearing a medical ID helps to immediately alert others that a person has a nut allergy and avoid the potential for misdiagnosis. If an epinephrine auto-injector such as EpiPen is needed in case of a severe allergic reaction, a medical alert bracelet or necklace can help direct the epi injector. 

"Carry and know how to use auto-injectable epinephrine and antihistamines to treat emergency reactions. Teach family members and other people close to you how to use epinephrine and consider wearing a medical alert bracelet that describes your allergy." - American Academy of Allergy Asthma & Immunology


What to Engrave on a Nut Allergy Medical ID 

Symptoms of a nut allergy can make it difficult for a person to speak and communicate important health information. When choosing a medical ID, make sure that it is easily recognized by responders like EMTs, doctors, and nurses. The engraving of a nut allergy alert ID should contain accurate information that is easy to read, even in the most difficult situations like an anaphylactic shock.

  • Wearer’s name
  • Tree nut allergy – include any other allergies that may or may not be related
  • Other medical conditions
  • Epi-pen information – include an alert to use epi-pen and where it can be found (in pocket, bag)
  • In case of emergency contacts