Our 2nd in the series from guest blogger and Disney guru, Claire, is about allergies, gtube and breastfeeding at the happiest place on Earth!
My child has food allergies or restrictions. Can they eat anything at Disney?
Thankfully, Disney can accommodate almost every food allergy there is. If you are making dining reservations then make sure to let them know ahead of time about dietary restrictions as well as allergies. You can also check out information on Disney’s Website all about what they can do to help you have a magical dining experience!
And if you forget your Epi Pen then do not fret. Disney now has locations throughout the parks with available Epi Pen and Epi Pen Jr’s. You can view the map as well as find out more information.
G Tube Feeding
If your child is on a G Tube fed diet, DO NOT PANIC! If you are staying in the parks in a Disney Resort, like I suggested in an earlier article, then there is a 99.9% chance that your room has a mini fridge. Also, if you book a Family Suite, then you will more than likely have a microwave, kitchen sink and counter space. You cannot bring a microwave with you to a Disney Resort so plan ahead and make sure you get a room with a microwave. Bring your blender or bring the food pre-blended. You can refrigerate formula as well as warm it up. If you are worried about your child’s pump battery running out while you are in the parks then you have 2 options. 1. Go back to the room to recharge/feed or option 2. head to a Baby Care Center (information below). You can also gravity feed while in the parks and not worry about a pump and batteries at all. Here is a gravity bag conversion chart :
If you have a G Tube Fed child ages 3 or older then the Disney Dining plan is not a good idea unless you plan to do all quick service meals, bring it back to the room and blend it yourself. Disney will not blend food for G Tube feeds, there are not liquid food options that can sustain a G Tube Fed child and the dining plan would be a complete waste of money. But if your child is still able to eat by mouth along with G Tube feeds to increase caloric intake then I highly suggest that you take a look at the menu’s at each location and plan ahead which places has food that your child can eat.
The bad news: Disney World does not have many places to sit. The good news: there is a special place for breastfeeding mommas to feed their baby in a comfortable and quiet environment. The Baby Care Center has a room with comfortable rocking chairs, air conditioning, and dimmer lights so that Momma can feed her baby in a calm and comfortable environment. You can even charge your phone while you feed your child! There is one baby care center per park.
There are even less places to sit with shade. The hot Florida sun can get intense very quickly. While I suggest that everyone takes a mid day break, heads back to the room for a nap or a rest, you cannot always head back to a room when you breastfeed on demand! Since there is only 1 baby care center per park, you cannot always hike across the park to breastfeed in the quiet comfort of the Baby Care Center. I highly suggest you bringing a sling to help your tired arms support your child while breastfeeding and a light weight cover to shield your baby from the hot sun if they’re not wearing a hat/sunglasses.
Another option is to breast feed while on a ride or an attraction. Not only will you be seated comfortably, in a dimmed area, air conditioned, but the gentle movement of the ride may help lull baby to sleep. Make sure you check with a Cast Member before boarding the ride to make sure that you can hold your child and check how long you will be in the ride so that you do not have to stop mid feed to disembark the ride. See how long each ride is HERE!
And finally if you pump your breast milk, you do not have to carry your pump around Disney with you all day. Disney considers a Pump a medical device. The first Aid stations will store your pump for you while you are out enjoying the parks! The first Aid station is conveniently located next door to the baby care center so when it is time to pump, you can go next door and sit in the feeding room and pump in comfort! Just don’t forget to pack a cooler and storage bags to keep your milk fresh and remember to pick your pump up as you leave the park for the day!
What is the Baby Care Center?
I am so glad you asked!! The Baby Care Center is a special place in each Disney World Park that provides a host of things for parents and children!
The Baby Care Centers include the following:
- Several large diaper changing tables.
- A bathroom with a small, toddler-sized flush toilet.
- An area reserved for the use of nursing mothers.
- Basic food prep equipment including: microwave, ice, plastic spoons, and sink.
- High chairs.
- A seating area for other family members.
- Items for sale including: diapers, training pants (like Pull-Ups, but a different brand), wipes, baby food, formula, juice, pacifiers, baby lotion, diaper ointment, adult comfort items (deodorant, feminine hygiene supplies, over the counter medications), basic infant clothing, sippy cups, bottles, Purell, Pedialyte, child formulations of standard over the counter medications.
For more information on the Baby Care Centers, their locations inside of the parks and photos of what to expect, check HERE!
Please share your secrets to food and Disney in the comments… and stay tuned! Next week is all about Inside the Parks: How the Disability Pass Works, Wheelchairs, Strollers and Rides!