How do I protect children from infection with Corona virus?
So far, reports have confirmed that children appear to be less likely to contract the new coronavirus than adults. But some researchers now claim that this is not the case.
As the new coronavirus continues to spread, the public continues to wonder who is most at risk of infection. Children are the primary concern: How susceptible are they to really get SARS-CoV-2 infection?
So far, reports in peer-reviewed journals – such as those featured on the JAMA Network – have indicated that children appear to be less likely to contract COVID-19 than adults.
Now, an international team of researchers from Shenzhen Center for Disease Control and Prevention and Pengcheng Laboratory, in China – conducted a study and came to a different conclusion. This study is preliminary and has yet to be published in a peer-reviewed journal. This means that it has not yet been subjected to a comprehensive and accurate evaluation by professionals in this field. However, the authors make their findings available online in hard copy.
The infection rate in children is similar to that of adults
The researchers analyzed data from people in Shenzhen, China with confirmed cases of coronavirus and data from their close contacts. In total, they looked at 391 people who had confirmed COVID-19 and 1,286 individuals who had been in close contact.
The goal of the researchers was to find out whether close contacts of people with COVID-19 would be positive for SARS-CoV-2, even when they showed no obvious symptoms of infection.
Researchers found that children under the age of 10 who had close contact with people who had COVID-19 showed an infection rate of 7.4% that was very similar to the infection rate of 7.9% in adults.
However, the researchers also determined that children are less likely to have symptoms, although they may appear to be as likely as adults to contract the virus.
“It’s possible that children will become infected [like adults] and not get sick,” says co-author Justin Lessler, Dr. of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, in Baltimore, Maryland.
In the study paper, the researchers also reported that people who lived with individuals who had diagnosed COVID-19 were more likely to develop the infection than other close people.
However, they write that, “Even in this group, fewer than 1 in 6 contacts were infected. Overall, we observed much less than one (0.4) transmission per base case.”
Watch your child for any signs of corona disease
COVID-19 can look different in people. For many people, catching COVID-19 will be more like the flu. People can develop a fever, cough, or have difficulty breathing deeply. Most people who have contracted COVID-19 do not get sick very much. Only a small group of people who have had it have more serious problems. Parents must follow several measures necessary to protect their children in light of this epidemic, the most important of which are:
Keep children healthy
Teaching and strengthening daily preventive measures
Parents and caregivers play an important role in teaching children to wash their hands. Explain that hand washing can preserve their health and prevent the virus from spreading to others.
Be a good role model If you wash your hands often, children are more likely to do the same.
Make washing hands a family-friendly activity.
Help your child stay active
Encourage your child to play outdoors, it is great for both physical and mental health. Take a walk with your child or go on a bike ride, but be careful not to touch surfaces and avoid gatherings.
Use indoor activity breaks (such as breaks) throughout the day to help your child stay healthy and focused.
Help your child stay social
Communicate with friends and family via phone or video chat.
Write cards or letters for family members who may not be able to visit them.
Check with your school about plans to continue meal services during the school term. Many schools keep school facilities open to allow families to eat meals or serve quick meals in a central location.
Help your child cope with stress
Watch for signs of stress or behavioral changes
Not all children and teens respond to stress the same way. Some common changes to watch for include:
Excessive anxiety or sadness
Unhealthy sleep habits
Difficulty paying attention and concentrating
Talk to your child or teen about the COVID-19 outbreak. Answer questions and share facts about COVID-19 in a way that your child or teen can understand.