Is OIT for Your Family?
Every so often, my inbox is flooded with emails linking to an article about food allergies. Most recently, the topic was oral immunotherapy, or OIT. I must have received 15 emails from people who love Lily and my family.
I want to first say that we are so grateful for any research being done to help keep these children safe. I truly appreciate and respect everyone who is involved in doing this important work. As an allergy parent, I thank them with immense gratitude from my heart.
My understanding is not that these kids will begin eating peanuts. It’s that if they are exposed to their allergen, they’re not in a life-threatening situation, they’re in a mild allergic reaction situation. That would be wonderful.
Every single family has their own experience and journey with food allergies. The thing that is universal is that we love our children, and we want them to be safe and have a beautiful life.
I have discussed this topic with Lily. She is 13, and she’s had anaphylaxis twice. Lily would not even for a second be injected with one of her allergens. It’s not an option for her psychologically, emotionally, spiritually. Granted she is 13 and making more decisions for herself, but we had similar feelings about Lily participating in related therapies as a young child. We opted to focus our energy on avoidance strategies, and it has proven to be very successful for us.
We continue to watch and learn about new developments in the diagnosis and treatment of life threatening food allergies. We know for certain that if a pill were developed tomorrow that doctors said eliminated the possibility of anaphylaxis, Lily would still avoid ingesting nuts like her life depended on it. She is changed forever psychologically and spiritually. She has moved on and into avoidance strategies that are giving her freedom.
I wish every child and family who is participating in OIT the security that it has the potential to offer.
I would love to hear your thoughts about OIT and the balance between sensitivity therapy and avoidance strategies.
Mother, Co-Founder and CEO