Gdansk Poland and a peanut and sunflower allergy

We made it to Poland! and to say we’ve been having a hard time would be an understatement.

The only reason I agreed to move to Poland was because Carl said it would be fine allergy wise, even though my allergy moms community warned me about it.  Needless to say the allergy moms were right and Carl and everyone at Carl’s work were wrong.  Poor Arren suffers from airborne allergies, he’s so little but he suffers quite badly, we found out the hard way that almost all the stores have open containers of peanuts around, people walk around shelling and eating peanuts, leaving things around and to really make it unbearable, a lot of people eat dried sunflower seeds right off the sunflower head that’s sold on every street corner, so everywhere is covered with allergens.

Arren’s main allergens that are life threatening are peanuts and sunflower seeds, sunflower seeds being the highest so finding out from day one that our son wasn’t okay here was a huge shock.  Arren has had trouble breathing, where I had to run him out of areas with these allergens everywhere, he’s scratched himself so intensely that he looks horrible, he’s bleeding, and have scabs everywhere, and his excema is out of control.  Not even his anti histamines is making this any better.  So right now I’m wondering if I should follow emirates rules and just hide in the toilet or get out of the place that is trying to kill my son, while Carl finishes his year alone here.

I can’t go into shops alone, I can’t let Arren play like a child because of all the allergens he could pick up and put in his mouth that could literally kill him.  We are both feeling anxious and miserable, and we both learned that my gut never lies, but at the same time this is an adventure right now, I’m hoping to help as many people travelling with allergies be able to travel safely so here are my tips for coming to Poland with a peanut, nut or sunflower allergy.

TIPS FOR TRAVELLING TO POLAND WITH A PEANUT OR SUNFLOWER SEED ALLERGY

  • If you have an airborne allergy or don’t want to be in close quarters with your allergens avoid Biedronka (the local grocery store), they have open containers of nuts and peanuts out on display.  Carrefree is another large grocery shop that sells containers filled with peanuts as well as dried sunflower head by the produce.  Your best bet will be to go to a tesco or order tesco online, you can click on the item and it will translate the ingredients to English.
  • there are a lot of outside fruit stalls that sell a whole lot of sunflower heads the seeds spray everywhere, and you will often find them all over the roads, bus stops and beaches.  The same goes for peanuts, just be vigilant where you sit, you never know who took a peanut shelling break there, Poland’s like a baseball game you will find shelled peanuts everywhere you look.
  • Even if you think the labels will be in English and people will tell you the labels are in English, they are not.  Everything is in Polish, even something that has the English name on the front won’t have ingredients listed in English, get a translating label scanner to check for allergens fast.
  • Learn the polish words for your allergens, it’s a lifesaver for when you need to quickly scan ingredients.
  • Print out allergy cards and make a 100% sure everything is allergy safe, sometimes they forget about the condiments.

 

2 thoughts on “Gdansk Poland and a peanut and sunflower allergy

    • Melissa says:

      It’s so hard! and he’s just too little to understand why he can’t go play in that area or not put something in his mouth. The tantrums have been HUGE

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