Parents Still Not Well-Informed On Peanut Allergies

Pregnancy

A new study is showing that parents are still not well informed when it comes to peanut allergies. Allergies can be incredibly fearful for a lot of parents out there. Children having an allergic reaction can be incredibly threatening to their health and their life, and this is why parents are always vigilant in watching what their child eats and how they react to it. There are also guidelines that are given out on how to introduce foods to infants that all parents should know, but this may not be the case.

According to Eureka Alert, a recent study has highlighted that a lot of parents remain uninformed on peanut allergies in their babies. This was based off a study that was done and presented at the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology Annual Scientific Meeting and it can be read in full here.

RELATED: Peanut Allergies Have Decreased After New Guidelines

It found that only 58% of study participants reported that their child’s pediatrician had discussed early peanut introduction, and only 40% had received a recommendation to introduce early. It used to be advised that parents avoid introducing peanuts early, but the science has changed.

The recommendations now are to introduce peanuts early and that it can help prevent an allergy from forming. Christopher Warren was the lead researcher of the study and he stated that their findings suggest that doctors are talking about the importance of introducing peanuts early to infants, they are not officially recommending it to their parents. If peanuts are introduced right when a baby starts solid food, you can prevent the development of an allergic reaction, and this is something that parents need to be aware of and the recommendations should be coming from their medical provider.

To complete the study, the researchers gathered surveys from more than 3,000 households during a 3-week period in 2021. The children were between the ages of 7 months and 3.5 years old. 11% of the children had eczema, which is important because eczema is usually a precursor to developing allergies. The parents who had children with eczema were the most educated on the guidelines surrounding introducing peanuts at an early age.

Overall, of all the parents they surveyed, only 44% had given their babies peanuts before they were 11 months old. This information is not entirely surprising to professionals, as they understand that there can be a large amount of fear and anxiety over introducing peanuts in babies and toddlers. No one wants to experience an allergic reaction, and this can lead to hesitancy in parents.

Sources: Eureka Alert, ACAAI


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