We never expect anaphylaxis to hit, our life is geared up to prevent it. But one of the hard things about living with anaphylaxis is the need to expect and be prepared for the unpredictable. One of my old school friends is allergic to wasps – very uncontrollable where food allergies seem more manageable – however there are always freak incidents/accidents with food too. It is for them that we need to be prepared.
I decided to teach Aars how to clap S.O.S. (…– – –…) because I was scared by how quickly he got to a point where he could not speak when going into anaphylactic shock. Clapping S.O.S. (…– – –…) saved him last time. I was in the bathroom upstairs and he was in the kitchen eating his normally “safe” rice-crispies with soya milk. Astoundingly he went into anaphylactic shock – I heard the clapping S.O.S. (…– – –…) by the time I reached him his face was purple, eyes wide with tears silently streaming down his cheeks. He had no voice whatsoever, he could not call for help.
I recommend that children are taught to clap S.O.S (…– – –…)if they suffer from anaphylaxis. It is so easy to learn and could save them if their throats are impacted by anaphylaxis. Aars school is amazing – his classmates and teachers all know what the clapping means. Temporary teachers are shown his photo and advised about his S.O.S clapping too. When I first taught Aars how to do S.O.S. (….– – –…) clapping he was 7 or 8 and I got him to practise every day. Now we occasionally revisit it just to ensure it’s embedded in his memory.
Here is a link so you can hear the S.O.S in morse code S is 3 fast claps … and O is 3 slow claps – – – and then S again …
3 fast claps … 3 slow claps – – – 3 fast claps …
Our key ways of feeling like we are prepared are these:
- Aars carries 2 AAIs on him at all times because his reactions are fast and severe.
- He practices self-administering his AAI – he prefers the JEXT to the Epipen – he has dummies of both.
- Aars knows how to clap S.O.S. (…– – –…) Because his throat swells when he goes into anaphylactic shock he struggles to breathe and to speak.
- Aars meds are always hung on the hook by the front door when he is home.
- When he goes out they go out with him, over his shoulder.
Apologies for the weird dashes in the O – the theme is warping them!? not very cool when trying to express S.O.S!