Apps to Help Manage Allergies

By Tracey Dowdy

Guacamole is easily one of my all-time favorite foods and I used to love avocado on my scrambled eggs and toast long before Pinterest and hipsters discovered it. Then one dark day avocados turned on me. In the midst of enjoying my lunch, my mouth and the back of my throat started to itch. A lot. Fortunately it wasn’t a severe reaction, but bad enough to let me know that avocados were maybe a no-no. I rolled the dice again a couple of weeks later and had the same reaction. Sigh. No more guacamole for me.

I was fortunate. For a lot of people even a trace amount of the wrong food or ingredient can lead to a much more serious reaction and even result in hospitalization. Food allergies and sensitivities are a serious matter and having easy access to the right information can quite literally mean the difference between life and death.

These apps are a great resource for preventing an allergic reaction and can help you or a caregiver make the right decisions in case of an emergency.

First Aid

first-aidDeveloped by the American Red Cross, First Aid offers step-by-step instructions on what to do in the event of an allergy emergency. Videos and quizzes help reinforce the information so you can do your homework ahead of time, and content is preloaded making that information available offline. Tell the app the symptoms being experienced, get first aid advice and call the hospital or get directions to the nearest emergency room – all from within the app.

Platform: iOS, Android
Cost: Free


AllergyEats

allergy-eatsAllergyEats is your mobile guide to allergy-friendly restaurants across the U.S. With feedback based on other users’ first-hand experience, you’ll know exactly how allergy friendly and accommodating the restaurant is to patrons’ requests. The app uses your phone’s GPS to find local restaurants and allows you to call the restaurant or get directions from within the app. Users have access to allergen lists, nutrition data and more without having to wait for a server to check with the kitchen.

Platform: iOS, Android
Cost: Free


AroundMe

aroundmeAroundMe is the most used local search application internationally and is available in six different languages. Allergic reactions can hit hard and fast, so the app is invaluable for finding a doctor or an emergency room when you’re on vacation or simply outside the range of your usual services.

Platform: iOS, Android, Windows
Cost: Free


Find Me Gluten Free

find-megluten-freeFind Me Gluten Free is a god-send for all those who’ve discovered gluten allergies or sensitivities in the past few years. The app helps you find gluten-free options whether you’re looking for a restaurant or grocery store and provides average prices and reviews from other users so you can stay on budget too.

Platform: iOS, Android
Cost: Free


Med Helper

med-helperMed Helper provides more than just a reminder to take your medication so you can stay ahead of those allergy symptoms. Manage your medications by setting reminders for when your prescription is about to run out, track the number of refills remaining, and take notes to track side effects and reactions to discuss with your doctor next time you visit. You can even export the information directly to the doctor’s office. The app allows for multiple profiles, so you can efficiently manage meds for everyone in your care.

Platform: iOS, Android
Cost: Free

Tracey Dowdy is a freelance writer based just outside Toronto, ON. After years working for non-profits and charities, she now freelances and researches on subjects from family and education to pop culture and trends in technology. Follow Tracey on Twitter.

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