Frequently Asked Questions
For the curious who just 'need to know'
YOUR ALLERGY PROFILE
What if my allergies are not the most common allergies? Can the app help me manage them?
Yes. The app can help you manage less common allergens, as well as the most common allergens. The app lets you manage up to 12 less common allergens that are unique to you. They are easy to add. Just click ‘Add More’ on the Select Allergies screen and enter your allergies that are less common. Be sure to click ‘Done’ before you leave the screen to save your information.
How many allergens can I manage?
The app helps you manage allergies to the 12 most common allergens (Eggs, Corn, Fish, Milk, MSG, Mustard, Peanuts, Sesame, Shellfish, Soy, Tree Nuts and Wheat.) The app also helps you manage up to 12 less common allergens, for a total of 24 allergens.
I am not allergic to all Tree Nuts—just some of them. I do not want to add all Tree Nuts to my Allergy Profile. What do I do?
We'd advise you not to select 'Tree Nuts' on the pre-populated grid on the 'Select Allergies' screen. Instead, scroll down on the page and tap the 'Add More' button. On the 'Add More' page you can add each Tree Nut you are allergic to individually.
Can I share the app with other people?
You can share the app with up to 5 family members, in addition to yourself.
I have multiple children with different food allergies. Can I manage everyone's different allergies with a single download of the app?
If you are talking about children from birth to age 13, you can choose to set up the app to handle everyone's allergies together in an integrated manner, or you can create a separate account for each child. This is entirely your choice, but from an ease-of-use perspective, it may be easiest to take the integrated approach during the 'little years'. The underlying assumption behind this suggestion is that your children will usually be together with you, another family member or a trusted caretaker who will be responsible for handling an allergy emergency, going grocery shopping, planning restaurant outings, scheduling doctor's visits, communicating allergies to others, etc. Legally, the app is not to be used by anyone under the age of 13.
When your children enter high school and beyond, you may want to consider downloading an app per child. You will need to create the account for your children between the ages of 13 and under 18, and accept the Terms and Conditions on their behalf. You will be fully responsible for their use of the app, including any financial charges and any legal liability resulting from their use of the app. Taking this step during these teen years could be helpful since your children will begin to navigate life with more independence and will not always be under your direct supervision. Acquiring the app individually for each of your children between the ages of 13 and under 18 can be an important empowerment step — helping them gradually take over the day-to-day management of their food allergies as they become young adults.
Your children can sign up for their own Allergy Force account when they turn 18.
I’m afraid I will accidentally dial 911. Is this possible? How do I avoid this?
When you tap the 911 button, a pop-up asks you if you want to call 911. If you choose ‘Yes’, you will be able to place the call or cancel. This call confirmation process ensures that any 911 call you place is intentional versus accidental.
Do I have to allow the app to access my personal Contact List to be able to create my list of Emergency Contacts in the app?
How many Emergency Contacts can I list?
You can set up as many Emergency Contacts as you wish. We suggest that between 2 and 4 Emergency Contacts is a good working number. You must have a valid mobile phone number for anyone you select to be an Emergency Contact. Once you have selected your Emergency Contacts, you will be able to text or call them individually in an emergency. You will also be able to reach out to several of them at once, using a prepared message from Allergy Force or your own custom message. When you text an Emergency Contact, a link to a map with your location is also sent. It is important to familiarize yourself with the app's emergency management features before you need them.
My doctor has specific instructions for me to follow if I accidentally ingest an allergen. How does the app handle this?
The Allergic Reaction Response Guide are general guidelines and do not take the specific medical issues of the user into consideration. It is always important to check with your doctor/allergist in advance to make sure of the correct course of action you should follow in a food allergy emergency. This is often provided in the form of an Emergency Action or Care Plan.
You can add your doctor’s instructions by tapping open the Doctor’s Comments box on the Allergic Reaction Response Guide screen. You can provide your doctor’s instructions for both Severe and Mild Reactions. Remember to save them.
For a Severe Reaction, your doctor’s instructions will appear in red on the Inject/Call/Monitor screen after you have checked that you are experiencing a Severe Symptom in the guide and have tapped ‘Next’. Follow your doctor’s instructions for managing a Severe Reaction exactly.
For a Mild Reaction, your doctor’s instructions will appear in red on the Antihistamine/Monitor screen after you have checked that you are experiencing one Mild Symptom in the guide and have tapped ‘Next’. Follow your doctor’s instructions for managing a Mild Reaction exactly. Please note that if you are experiencing more than one Mild Symptom, or you are unsure whether your symptoms are Mild or Severe, after you tap 'Next', you will be taken to the Inject/Call/Monitor screen with your doctor's instructions for managing a Severe Reaction.
FOOD SCAN & FOOD SEARCH FEATURES
How does the Food Scan work?
The Food Scan for eliminating allergic foods is a Premium feature. This feature helps you quickly determine if a food product is unsafe for you to eat. When there is a match between an ingredient on the ingredient label and your Allergy Force allergy profile, you will be alerted. You must have a cellular or Wi-Fi connection to use this feature. Allergy Force uses multiple databases to give you immediate access to over a million food product ingredients labels for products sold in the US, Canada and Europe.
When you press the feature’s ‘Scan’ button and align a food product’s UPC/bar code within the scanner image guides, you can scan the product’s UPC/bar code. Allergy Force will cross check the list of ingredients in the food against your allergy profile in the app and the Allergy Force Hidden Allergen Lists. If an allergen from your profile is present in an ingredients list, or there is a match with a hidden allergen, the scan will quickly deliver a red warning bar that indicates an allergen match. You will see a list of the allergens found. At that time, you can decide if you want to give the ingredients list a thorough read, or put the product back on the shelf without further reviewing the ingredient label.
The scan will not reveal contaminant risk, specifically, allergens that may be present due to the food product being “Manufactured on the same equipment as” or “Manufactured in the same facility as”, or that are disclosed with a “May contain…” statement. To assess this risk you must read the ingredient label.
If no allergens are found using the scan feature, is the food product safe to eat?
Absolutely not! This feature is not intended to replace your personal assessment of a food product’s ingredients and your determination of whether the product is safe for you to consume or not. You will see a yellow warning bar when your allergens are not found in the ingredients of a product you have scanned. This does NOT mean the food is safe to consume. You must READ THE LABEL. The only way you can make certain a food item is safe to eat is by carefully reading its ingredient list.
Remember, this scan feature is designed to help you quickly evaluate if a food product is unsafe to eat. This feature quickly rules out unsuitable products so you can spend your valuable time reading labels on products with potential to work for your allergy profile.
What’s the difference between the Food Scan and the Food Search features? Are they the same thing?
These features are similar, but they work a little differently to achieve the same goal – you’ll be able to quickly eliminate foods that contain your allergens from your shopping cart and spend more time evaluating products that have potential to work for your profile.
The scan feature actually reads the UPC/bar codes for a particular product and pulls the data from massive databases containing the ingredients of over a million food products.
The search feature taps into the same databases, but narrows in on the food categories or brands you want to evaluate. Like the scan feature, though, you still have to have a cellular or Wi-Fi connection to use this feature.
If your allergens are not found in a product delivered from your search, you will still need to thoroughly read the ingredients list and make your own determination of whether or not the product is safe for you to eat.
I am allergic to corn and did not see some common hidden allergens for corn on your list. It seems incomplete. Will you address this?
We have used great care in aggregating these Hidden Allergen Lists from multiple, verified sources. These lists are updated from time to time with additional hidden allergens. When you have a Premium subscription to the app, you have access to all of the app's Hidden Allergen Lists.
You may find that a hidden allergen you know of has been overlooked. If you find that a hidden allergen is missing from a list, please let us know. Send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org, use the Contact Us form on this website, or reach out via Help/Feedback found on the More screen in the app.
We're always grateful for your input.
MEDICATION EXPIRATION TRACKING
How many epinephrine injector expiration dates can I track?
The app can track expiration dates for up to eight epinephrine injectors. You will need to label each of your epinephrine injectors with a unique identifier and input each associated expiration date.
How will the app notify me when one of my epinephrine injectors is going to expire?
When setting up the epinephrine injector expiration information in the app, you will choose how you’d like to be notified about an expiring injector: having the epinephrine injector icon on the Home screen in the app turn yellow, receiving a weekly email, receiving a weekly pop-up on your phone. You will begin receiving these weekly notifications two months before your epinephrine injector expires. You will continue to receive them until you replace the expiring epinephrine injector and input a new expiration date, or the injector expires.
How many bottles/boxes of antihistamine can I track?
The app can track expiration dates for up to 5 different bottles/boxes of antihistamine. You will need to label each bottle/box of antihistamine with a unique identifier and input each associated expiration date.
How will the app notify me when one of my bottles/boxes of antihistamine is going to expire?
When setting up the antihistamine expiration information in the app, you will choose how you’d like to be notified about your expiring antihistamine: having the antihistamine icon on the Home screen in the app turn yellow, receiving a weekly email, receiving a weekly pop-up on your phone. You will begin receiving these weekly notifications two months before a bottle/box of antihistamine expires. You will continue to receive them until you replace the expiring antihistamine and input a new expiration date, or the antihistamine expires.
RESTAURANT EXPLANATION (aka Digital Chef Card)
Can I send notices in multiple languages to a restaurant if I know the employees speak different languages? How?
The app’s restaurant allergy explanation (aka: digital chef card) lets you give restaurants a heads-up on your allergies, before you arrive via email or text. Or, you can print out the explanation before you leave home, or you can physically show the explanation on your phone to restaurant staff when you're at the restaurant.
The app supports explanations in 21 languages. The 12 pre-populated allergens listed in the Allergy Force app are translated by native speakers. Any less common allergens you have added using 'Add More' are translated by software.
To answer your specific question, you would just need to send several messages in the desired languages – for example, one for the kitchen crew in their language, one for the servers in their language, one for the manager in his/her language.
Will this work if I travel internationally?
Yes, it will. This feature helps you communicate with the manager, waiters, chef and kitchen staff to explain your allergies, even when you don't speak the same language.
I have some less common food allergies. Will the app's chef card work for me?
Yes, it will. The app gives you the opportunity to manage up to 12 less common food allergens, in addition to the 12 most common allergens pre-populated in the app. You can manage up to 24 different food allergies using the app. This feature does not replace the need to talk to the waiter, chef and/or manager of a restaurant to ask questions regarding the ingredients they use and their preparation methods.
How are my food allergies translated into the 21 languages by the app's digital chef card?
The 12 food allergies that are pre-populated in the app are hand translated into the 21 different languages the by native speakers. The unique food allergies you add to your allergy profile using 'Add More' are translated into the different languages using a commercial software tool. For this reason, you will want to double check the translations of your unique food allergies just to be sure they are 100% accurate.
What does the app cost?
We realize that sometimes it’s important to build trust over time with a customer and are confident that as you get to know us, you’ll come to love us. For this reason, we’ve made some of the features Free Forever, and others are only available when you have a Premium account. You can see all the features here. When you upgrade to Premium, it only costs $1.99 per month or $19.99 per year.
What features do I get when I access Free Forever?
For example, you’ll never have to pay for family sharing, the restaurant allergy explanation card, the 911 emergency call feature, the allergic reaction response guide, the epinephrine and antihistamine expiration reminders, the allergic reaction diary & history, or the epinephrine injector reminder to take your epinephrine when on the go. You can see all the Free Forever features here.
How is Premium different from Free Forever?
When you upgrade to Premium, in addition to the Free Forever Features, you’ll have a wealth of additional features at your fingertips. Premium features include food scan & search tools to make grocery shopping more efficient, a recipe finder, hospital and pharmacy finders, and a convenient way to communicate how your food needs to be prepared to others with the tap of a button. You’ll also receive exclusive content and partner deals and you won’t be distracted by ads when using the app. The icing on the cake? You can try out Premium for 14 days for free! You can see all the features here.
How does the free trial work?
There is a one-time 14-day free trial period with either of the subscription plans – monthly or yearly (12-month plan.) If you turn off the auto-renew to your subscription at your app store before the end of the 14-day free trial period, you will not be charged when the free trial ends. After turning off the auto renew feature you will no longer be able to access any of the app’s Premium features, but you’ll still be able to enjoy all of the Free Forever features.