Almost 1 in 10 children in the UK are affected by allergy with a fifth of allergic reactions happening at school – and yet only half of primary schools say they are confident managing anaphylaxis. Tracey Dunn advises
Image: Adobe Stock

Unhelpfully for people with allergies there are many misconceptions about their life-threatening condition. There is confusion about allergy and intolerance as well as a rising number of people who excuse their dislike of a food by saying that they are allergic to it.

People with allergies must avoid eating the substance they are allergic to as even a tiny bit can cause a reaction. 

At best they will have a mild reaction including hives, nausea, itching and swelling – at worst they will have anaphylaxis with compromised airway, breathing and circulation which without life-saving adrenaline could be fatal.

The immune system in a person with an allergy has misread the food/substance and treats it as a threat, attacking the body. An intolerance doesn’t affect the immune system and while a person eating the food may be unwell, the resulting symptoms are not life-threatening and the person will recover. For a person with an allergy, even a little bit will hurt. 

Register now, read forever

Thank you for visiting Headteacher Update and reading some of our content for professionals in primary education. Register now for free to get unlimited access to all content.

What's included:

  • Unlimited access to news, best practice articles and podcasts

  • New content and e-bulletins delivered straight to your inbox every Monday


Already have an account? Sign in here