How teens view medical bracelets in secondary school

June 19, 2015

I’ve had the real pleasure of working with a talented group of year 12 students at Stantonbury Campus, to explore how young people view medical bracelets in a secondary school environment. It was fascinating to hear their feedback on individual designs, but what I really wanted to see was how they saw (visually) a diabetes bracelet or epilepsy necklace fitting into their daily life.

It was critical that this came from them (instead of me). One thing my children have taught me as they grow older is that they need to view something through their own eyes, and want to do it, or it is unlikely to happen.

My son is currently in year 8 and my daughter in year 7. And it has been a real jolt seeing the social pressures and behaviour that challenge learning in a large secondary school. In short, the gloves are off.

Their day is no longer policed by benign stern looks from the teacher. In a large and diverse school the rules often seem set by the masses, with group-think deciding what they call something, whether it is fashionable or whether they will learn today. It is mine (and every parent’s wish) that they “learn to swim” ... staying above water and making the tough transition to thrive in this new environment where the rule book has changed.

Secondary school can be a tough place for someone with a medical condition or allergy. Not because of the H&S policies, student support counsellors or allergy free lunches. But because so much of their lives is impacted by what other teens think of their diabetes or allergy.

Medical alert bracelets are so important in making sure that critical medical or emergency contact information is there if needed. And an ID bracelet can help parents give teens the independence they crave as life changes. But I’ve never met a young person that wants to be “labelled” by their medical condition. They are growing wise to the issues around managing it. But simply strive to be a normal and accepted part of the group.

Our medical bracelets are designed with young people in mind. We strive to give them the designs and control over wording that will make sure they find a bracelet or necklace that works for them. As part of this journey, we worked with a group of students over six months to see how they view allergy bracelets, epilepsy bracelets or diabetes bracelets in a school environment. Unleashed with cameras and an open brief, it was great to see the open, honest, casual scenes they captured.

Colour, material and discretion (of medical information) were all important. But their images capture something else. There’s a flicker of promise here. Something that says “It’s no big deal. This can be part of my life and it doesn’t change who I am.” Let’s fan it together ... and more young people will feel like themselves when they enter the school gates.


Black stainless steel medical alert bracelet teens skateboard

Navy blue friendship cord beads medical alert ID bracelet classroom

Neon Pink Black medical ID bracelet alert mobile iphone text

Neon Yellow Black paracord medical ID alert bracelet electric guitar

Black leather medical id bracelet teenager boy teen

Paracord yellow black friends teens medical alert ID bracelet

Matthew Clay - Navy blue medical alert ID bracelet student laptop (Photo credit - Matthew Clay)

Pink Grey paracord mobile iphone phone girl

Teens in class medical id dog tag alert cord friendship  (Photo credit - Queenstar Essilfie)

Purple friendship beads cord medical alert bracelet denim

Queenstar - Teens high school medical alert id bracelets cord beads leather  (Photo credit - Queenstar Essilfie)

Matthew Clay - medical alert friendship bracelet texting mobile iphone  (Photo credit - Matthew Clay)

High five diabetes medical alert bracelet ID teens teenager

Medical alert bracelet minecraft video game teenager boy

dog tag beads medical alert ID bracelets in classroom teenagers  (Photo credit - Queenstar Essilfie)

Black stainless steel guitar medical ID alert bracelet teens

Black Dog Tag medical alert ID necklace keyboard piano

Don't hide who you are black leather medical alert bracelet teens

Any favourite pics, or issues you’ve faced at school? Let us know below...


1 Response

Karen Smith
Karen Smith

June 24, 2015

Fantastic article and so true! Navigating the school system be it junior or senior level is a mine field and it takes very little for a person to be singled out be it a medical condition, a look, how well off their family are or aren’t etc and the effects of being the unfortunate one singled out can and do last a lifetime the damage done can be irreversible. To have input from youngsters about Medical Alert Bracelets is crutial not only in educating them to the reasons for wearing one which are lifesaving to the stigma felt by the wearer who can feel branded by a label he or she has no control over. Hopefully even if it saves only one youngster from being singled out to being accepted its well worth the effort. I have been chased for years to wear a medical alert “something” and 20 years on I have finally taken the plunge after finding something discrete but obvious and the ability of actually being able to make my own interchangeable bracelets meaning I may finally wear it daily! If these youngsters can learn when they are young it then becomes a habit of a lifetime which may one day save their life or in turn allow them to save another’s life by spotting someone’s medical alert they may not have look for before!

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