Whether you’ve had a latex allergy since birth or were diagnosed at a later age, you know that this is an allergy with hidden dangers. From food contamination to rubber bands in unexpected places, you’re always on the lookout. Disney World, like anywhere else, has unique issues you should be aware of. Here’s everything you need to know to protect yourself on your next trip.
What to bring with you to the parks
You’ll bring the items you’d normally bring when you’re away from home, including an epi-pen if needed and a few doses of whatever over-the-counter allergy medicine you use. It’s also smart to bring a copy of your prescription both in case you need to have it refilled and because it can make it easier to get through security. Many guests also bring a few pairs of non-latex gloves and carry them with them. In the event you must be treated by first aid, you’ll have the gloves they need to give you proper care.
Be aware of cross allergies
As you likely already know, those with latex allergies are at a high risk of developing reactions to items that are chemically similar to latex. There is no list that covers everyone and every allergy, but generally speaking common cross allergies include avocados, bananas, kiwis, pineapple, and chestnuts. Check menus and talk with cast members to be sure the food you’re purchasing isn’t prepared alongside these items.
Disney’s restaurants are latex glove free!
In recent years Disney has changed their protocol and all restaurants now use vinyl gloves instead of latex gloves. Note that this doesn’t necessarily cover restaurants in Downtown Disney, where visitors have reported that popular Earl of Sandwich still uses latex gloves. You can be confident that the cast members are always happy to answer any questions you have, so don’t be afraid to ask! You can even request to see the boxes the gloves come in so you’ll feel 100% safe that they’re vinyl.
Know your balloons
Though Disney is officially on the record that all balloons in their parks are latex-free, this is not the case. If you see someone making balloon animals, you should assume that they’re made from latex. You should also avoid the most popular of all balloons in the Disney parks: the Mickey Mouse balloon. It’s actually two balloons: a Mickey head balloon encased in an outer, see-through balloon. While the outer balloon is latex-free, the inner one is not. If you are severely allergic to latex you likely don’t want to run the risk that the outer balloon will pop and you’ll be subjected to the dangers of the latex inner balloon.
Disney does make it relatively easy to get through the parks without being exposed to latex. However, the above tips are smart tips to follow to ensure your own safety.