Trick or treating with a nut allergy

To take the scare factor out of Halloween, we asked our colleague, Gillian, what tricks and treats she has for her son who has a severe nut allergy.

How do you manage trick or treating at Halloween?

"As a Mum of a 6 year old boy with a severe nut allergy, Halloween is a “scary” time for me and any parent of a child with an allergy I’m sure. We try to keep it safe and fun for Matthew with a few simple rules.

The best bit of advice I would give any parent of a child with an allergy is to go trick or treating with them (when possible) – you can keep your distance but know they are safe and always, always carry antihistamines and epinephrine auto-injectors, as prescribed."


"The other rule in our house is to wait till the trick or treating is finished before eating the goodies – we have a little chat with Matthew before we leave the house (and give him a safe treat to eat when trick or treating – normally they are more interested in knocking on doors!!). After we go home and look through the bags, with his friends or his sister, to see who got what kind of thing but keeping it fun. Then you can see what is safe and what is not. This has worked well for us the last four years."

Do you talk to neighbours beforehand and discuss the best options for your child?

"No, I think the idea of it is good but calling to every house in the park is not an option and also it could make the child feel “different”."

What are your top tips to avoid any frights at Halloween, if you have a child with a nut allergy?

  • Avoid sweets / chocolates without a label and/or not in a wrapper.
  • Always carry antihistamines and epinephrine auto-injectors, as prescribed.
  • Carry a mobile phone for emergencies.
  • Remember fun-sized treats and regular sized treats often have different ingredients.
  • Always read labels.
  • Hand out small toys or non-food items.


Posted: 26/10/2018 09:56:50 by Gillian Fox
Filed under: Allergies, Children, Halloween, Treats

About Me

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Gillian Fox
Hi, my name is Gillian Fox and I am the Research Coordinator and part of the Food Science team at safefood. I am Mum to Sophie and Matthew and am married to a cycling fanatic! I love to travel with my family and enjoy nothing more than planning the next family trip. I also love keeping fit and running which provides me with some “me time”.