A NEW MOTHER from Broomhill is calling for better awareness over baby allergies after her 14-month-old son suffered an allergic reaction.

Emma Sherlock, 31, waited four months to find out what baby Conor was allergic to - meaning what she fed him was potentially lethal.

As today is National Weaning Week, Emma is now sharing her story in the hope there will be new support given for mothers of children with allergies.

Emma said: “I fed Conor a stew I made from a weaning recipe, and he took an allergic reaction coming out in hives and swollen eyes. Myself and my husband had to phone an ambulance and wait hours in hospital, where he was under observation.

"Four months later he took another allergic reaction, this time to eggs.

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"We waited 4 months for an allergy test and appointment and this made weaning a nightmare. Between 6 and 10 months feeding him was a minefield

"I would have appreciated support from a dietitian and a quicker diagnosis.

"No one told me that myself and my husband having asthma and eczema put Conor in a higher risk category of having allergies, and I think all new mothers should be made aware of this."

Emma was given details of the Allergy UK Helpline, and she now wishes to share her experience to help other parents in similar situations.

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She added: "Allergy UK helped us straight away after we filled in their survey. It shouldn't have to be so difficult to get help."

New research released today from Allergy UK revealed an overwhelming lack of reliable information, guidance and emotional support for parents and carers of children with allergies.

It found 93 per cent of parents feel that there is insufficient reliable information available to them about weaning food-allergic children, and over half of parents (56 per cent) say they are particularly challenged by a difficulty in accessing professional healthcare.

Since the survey was conducted, appointments with GPs, dietitians and specialists have also been delayed and cancelled due to COVID-19, meaning parents and caregivers are finding it harder to access help and advice.

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Amena Warner, Head of Clinical Services at Allergy UK, said: “Today’s survey results highlight the many challenges that parents face when introducing solids into a child's diet.

"Allergy UK’s mission has always been to raise the profile of allergy at all levels, which is true, now, more than ever.

"Allergy UK has a critical part to play in supporting its community, whilst the NHS focuses on supporting the nation through the biggest health crisis this generation has ever faced.

"We hope our newly created weaning support pack will help those struggling with weaning their children to find relevant and reliable information during these unprecedented times and beyond.”

For more information and to download the Allergy UK Weaning Your Food Allergic Baby Support Pack please click here or call the Allergy UK Helpline for further advice on 01322 619898.