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If you have a teen who needs to carry life saving medicine - over her please, I need advice!

(49 Posts)
DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Sat 27-Jun-15 10:29:41

Ds is 14, has to carry inhalers and epi pens. Was diagnosed when he was 2 and it was MUCH easier when he was tiny and I was in control of bags.

Whole different ball game now and he's rebelling. I have to remind him every fucking time he goes out and I'm usually met with ' I don't need it, I'm only going just down the road.'

How the hell do I get it into his head that he MUST carry them whenever he leaves the house? He has had to pop out just now and I reminded him about his epi pens and he out and out lied and said he had them. I called him back and checked his bag and they weren't even in there.

I've told him were going to have a chat when he gets back. Unfortunately he has to go out or I would normally ground him.

I'm usually the sort of parent that lets him learn by his mistakes- except that's not an option in this case.

Anyone have any words of wisdom? I need him to listen but equally not scare him so much he'll never sleep againwink

hellhasnofurylikeahungrywoman Sat 27-Jun-15 10:35:39

I don't know. I have a daughter who has to carry the same, as an adult she is fine and well organised but as a teen she was a bloody nightmare. Teens think they are invincible don't they, we simply had to do a bag check every time she left the house until wisdom kicked in.

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Sat 27-Jun-15 10:40:23

Thanks hell, I've just told him that I will his bag and if he doesn't act responsibly he will be grounded. He rolłed his eyes which I did my best to ignore wink

Delphine31 Sat 27-Jun-15 10:42:37

Has he had any severe allergic reactions yet? My feeling is that if he had he would be scared enough to want his epipens with him at all times.

Is he allergic to food or something else? If it's bee stings he's allergic to he obviously needs meds with him at all times.

If it's nuts or whatever, and he's just going to kick a football around your local playing field maybe that's one battle not worth fighting if he won't eat anything anyway.

I have a very severe nut allergy and would never say anything or go to someone else's without my epipens with me. But if I'm just off out for a walk I sometimes don't bother.

meglet Sat 27-Jun-15 10:43:36

marking my place. ds is 8yo so we haven't quite reached the stage of him needing to carry his epi-pens. I do wonder what will happen.

Delphine31 Sat 27-Jun-15 10:43:47

Never 'eat' anything, not 'say'. Clearly not awake yet!

Delphine31 Sat 27-Jun-15 10:46:17

Also think it's generally more difficult for boys/men. My epipens live in my handbag so by default go with me wherever I go unless I'm heading out for exercise.

Boys only have a rucksack if they've got other things to carry and don't want to be lumbered with a bag for going out with their mates for a couple of hours.

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Sat 27-Jun-15 10:46:49

Severe nut allergy and the allergy clinic said carry it at all times as he might possibly react to bee stings as well.

Huge reaction when he was 2 and we ended up on hospital, I've shown him photos of himself, he was so swollen his eyes were swollen shut.

He needs to carry them in case he snogs someone and doesn't ask if they've had nuts!!

Bloody hellangry

MyVisionsComeFromSoup Sat 27-Jun-15 10:49:23

no advice (I have a compliant teen, wasn't sure they actually existed wink) but on the past couple of times DD2s been in hospital, there have been several 12-15 year old boys admitted because they haven't been dealing with their diabetes properly, and all of them had the riot act read to them by the scariest nurses they could dig up in paediatrics. From what the staff told us later, it seems to be a common thing amongst teens, especially as a PP said, at that age they're invincible, and you as their parent don't understand/know what it's like/care that you're making them look like a freak by insisting they don't die confused.

OP, i'd be tempted to get a medical professional to scare him, he might listen to someone who isn't you?

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Sat 27-Jun-15 10:59:43

Good idea - I will call the nurse who deals with school allergies in this area, she was very helpful last time I spoke to her.

Heyho111 Sat 27-Jun-15 18:50:38

I made her D wear a bum bag with the stuff in from 4yrs old. It got her in the habit of always having them.
Now it's a trendy small back pack.
How about a wallet that you could adapt to just hold the pen.

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Sat 27-Jun-15 23:15:09

Hey ho- ds has always carried them since he started school, in his book bag. It's only recently it's been a problem. He has the epi pen bag that Bear Grylls carries plus a trendy back pack bag, so he does have a choice.

I think what I said earlier must've sunk in as he went out earlier and said to me not to worry as he had his bag.

I'm still getting a scary nurse to have a word though grin

musicposy Sun 28-Jun-15 09:07:32

14 year olds are rubbish at this. DD1 has severe multiple allergies, particularly badly to peanuts and carries the same stuff as your DS.

I was wringing my hands in despair at 14, despite the fact she had gone into anyphalaxis 4 times between the ages of 5 and 10 and clearly remembered the experience. She would constantly go out without her epipens because she didn't want the bother/ to be seen with them and was "always careful and nothing will happen" hmm

The nurse at the allergy clinic must see this all the time because she pointedly asked "now do you always take your medication everywhere?" And on seeing DD pull a face, gave her a long, no punches pulled lecture. She pointed out how teens are the most likely to die precisely because of this blase attitude.

It did work - a bit - so definitely get a medical professional to scare him!

The other thing that worked for us was docking her allowance. She got £30 a month and in desperation we said that every time she left the house without epipens that was a £5 fine. It made us massively unpopular upon implementation and caused huge rows mainly on the basis that DD2 is allergy free so we should find something else to fine her for grin. However, after we'd fined her a couple of times, she did start trying to remember wink.

There's light at the end of the tunnel. DD is 19 now and for at least the last couple of years has been really sensible. She takes them everywhere and always asks to check food packets and allergen booklets completely independently of my input. You just have to be very vigilant every time they leave the house until they reach that happy point!

Allgunsblazing Sun 28-Jun-15 09:29:57

Tell your teen that a tracheostomy is a good outcome if he gets an anaphylactic shock.
Irreversible brain damage occurs after only 3 minutes of oxygen starvation.
Unless he usually hangs out with crash trolleys, he'd better have his epipen, there is no Superman to fly within seconds to his aid.

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Sun 28-Jun-15 10:55:56

All - I have, he's quite aware what happens he just doesn't think it applies to him. I've told him until I'm blue in the face.

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Sun 28-Jun-15 10:57:25

Music - brilliant idea about money and ds responds well to 'fines' so I will implement that, thank you.

meglet Mon 29-Jun-15 13:36:07

dame please can you link to the bag that Bear Grylls uses? 8yo DS needs something robust and more suitable for a bigger kid.

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Mon 29-Jun-15 13:38:44

Here you gosmile

Andro Mon 29-Jun-15 14:46:29

The worst part about having to carry meds all the time is that it makes you feel 'different', I went through a phase of being acutely self conscious about my allergy...feeling as though everyone knew just by looking at me.

School matron and my house mistress were the people who made it okay (for want of a better way the put it) for me to do what was necessary to stay safe/manage my reaction properly. Hearing the hard truth and being told what you is more real coming from a professional you respect.

loveulotslikejellytots Mon 29-Jun-15 14:59:43

I've got no experience of allergies or epipens, but is there any way you could put it on a piece of string/ leather string he can wear around his neck? He could have it under his clothes and he hasn't got to physically carry it?

loveulotslikejellytots Mon 29-Jun-15 15:01:11

Ah, my suggestion probably wouldn't work for an inhaler.

How about a small pouch on a carabiner he could put on a belt hook?

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Mon 29-Jun-15 15:03:48

Andro-that's exactly the problem, I'm sure.

Love -he has that,I linked to it.

Senigallia Mon 29-Jun-15 15:08:34

Link it to his allowance? Any time you check his bag and he doesn't have it he loses x amount? I'm sure loss of money to spend on overpriced Jack Wills or whatever may help to concentrate his mind!

Senigallia Mon 29-Jun-15 15:09:33

Plus maybe keeping it on a hook by the front door so he always sees it?

PurpleHairAndPearls Mon 29-Jun-15 15:09:42

It's hard isn't it. Scary nurse might be able to scare him, but also have some useful ideas for you on how else to implement the rules, as they will be used to dealing with it.

My DCs have medical equipment (not medically life saving but important) that they have to take everywhere, and at the root of one of my (teen) DC's refusal, was the "feeling different". So much easier when she was little and I could sew it/clip it to clothes etc!

I found a no nonsense approach from the people involved in their care (particularly the consultant they respected and liked) was useful eg "now I know you're mature and sensible enough to remember to wear xxxx". They also saw adults and older teens in clinics and groups etc wearing theirs, which helped.

A customised holder/cover was also an incentive, for DSs', an Xbox game related one was very good when he was older, don't know if that's something you can get? Also tattoo like sticker things on covers were good, again apologies if this isn't practical for you.

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