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How can I protect a child with a latex allergy?

There is no cure for allergies. The best thing you can do is help your child stay away from latex items.

  • Keep your child away from latex. For example, use Mylar balloons instead of latex balloons. Use vinyl or plastic gloves instead of rubber gloves. Provide your child with plastic or vinyl toys.
  • Let all healthcare workers know about your child's allergy. Be sure your child's allergy is written in his or her medical chart. The hospital should use non-latex products with your child. For example, they should use plastic catheters and silk tape.
  • Avoid using latex urinary catheters, red rubber catheters used for irrigations, and enema tubes.
  • Talk with your doctor or nurse about a MedicAlert bracelet for your child.
  • Talk with your doctor or nurse about emergency medicine that you can keep at home in case your child needs it. Make sure the syringe doesn't contain latex.

Some children may be more likely to become allergic to latex than others. These children tend to have one or more of the following characteristics:

  • Multiple operations since birth
  • Spina bifida
  • Birth defects of the genito-urinary system
  • Food allergies, especially to bananas, kiwis, tomatoes, peaches and cherries

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.