Parents of young children with newly diagnosed food allergy are at risk for poor psychosocial outcomes due to food allergy’s life-threatening nature and demanding management routines. Presently, there are no interventions to support food allergy parents during this adjustment phase.
Ashley Ramos, Ph.D., and colleagues at Children’s National Hospital conducted a pilot study to explore the feasibility, acceptability and preliminary efficacy of a novel intervention using peer mentorship to improve psychosocial functioning in parents of young children with newly diagnosed food allergy. Parent mentors were trained in mentorship and matched with a mentee, a parent of a child under the age of 5 years with newly diagnosed food allergy, for a 6-month intervention period.
Their findings indicate the use of a peer mentorship program to support parents of children with newly diagnosed food allergy is feasible and helpful. It may be appropriate to develop and implement such programs in allergy clinics.
Study authors from Children’s National include: Ashley Ramos, Ph.D., Frances Cooke, Emily Miller and Linda Herbert, Ph.D.
Read the full study in the Journal of Pediatric Psychology.