2020 is the year where the global epidemic CoronaVirus 19 had spread out in numerous countries. This virus had not only impaired a human physically but, also financially, emotionally, mentally, and above all socially.
According to worldometers.info, the total active cases of COVID as of 10 December 2020, were 69,317,683. COVID-19 is a contagious virus that can spread through direct or indirect contact through the contaminated surfaces, or the affected one.
The only cure for Corona is to prevent it from happening. People were and are still requested to follow all the SOPs and avoid going to crowded areas. As an adult, we can understand the severity and the sensitivity of this pandemic situation, however, a child has no clue as to what is happening around him.
Keeping the kids safe from this virus is a major concern for all parents across the globe. An adult can follow all the guidelines and regulations imposed by the government and the medical experts. But, when it comes to the safety and health of the child, parents have to take some extra measures to keep their babies safe.
COVID-19 In Babies And Children
CoronaVirus can happen to a person of every age. It means that children are also at a risk to get infected. However, infected children do not become as sick as adults. The intensity of the symptoms might be mild to none.
According to the Children's Hospital Association and the American Academy of Pediatrics, in the United States, children represent about 10% of all COVID-19 cases.
The newborns are at a higher risk. Doctors suggest that it is likely due to their immature immune systems and smaller airways, which makes them more likely to develop breathing issues with respiratory virus infections.
Furthermore, children with underlying conditions, such as obesity, diabetes, and asthma, are at higher risk of serious illness with COVID-19.
If a pregnant woman is tested positive for this virus, then there is a 2%-5% probability that the newborn too would be infected with this virus. Even if the baby is tested negative for the virus, it is still advisable for the COVID-19 infected mother to temporarily separate herself from the newborn.
It takes 2-3 weeks for the babies to recover from COVID-19. No parent would want to see their babies suffering and quarantined. The best way to prevent this from infecting your baby is to protect yourself and them from this virus. Take all the precautions to prevent this virus from spreading in your family.
Symptoms For COVID-19 In Children
- Hot flashes or chills
- Difficulty in breathing
- Loss of taste
- Nausea or vomiting
- Congestion or runny nose
However, sometimes the symptoms may be serious and can pose a serious threat to the baby’s life. If you observe the following symptoms in the baby, without any delay call 911.
- Bluish lips
- Inability to keep down any liquids
- New confusion or inability to awaken
- Difficulty in breathing
Unfortunately, some cases have been reported where the newborns had lost their lives to this virus. In the UK, the youngest reported death was of an infant who was just 13 days old.
No parent would ever want to see their child suffering and being isolated from the rest of the family. We understand that the current situation has incited the anxiety of many parents. There is nothing at the moment we can do to stop the virus from prevailing. However, we can take precautionary measures to keep ourselves and our beloveds away from this virus.
Ways To Keep Babies And Toddlers Safe From COVID-19
To help all the worried parents we have listed down the ways by which you can protect babies from COVID-19.
1. Avoid Close Contact With Others
COVID-19 spreads when a healthy person comes in contact with the virus-infected. To avoid the spread of this disease, make sure that you avoid close contact with all the people.
Just keeping the babies indoors won’t help them to stay away from Corona if you don’t avoid close contact with others.
Do not shake hands, hug, kiss, or even sit in close proximity with others. Corona doesn’t come uninvited. By going out and coming in close contact with others is an open invitation to Corona to pay a visit to your house. You certainly don’t want that, do you?
Try your best to avoid going out. If leaving the house and going out is necessary then make sure that you do not touch anything or anyone unnecessarily.
2. Practice Good Hygiene Yourself
Your babies will stay away from Corona if you do. Make sure that you practice good hygiene. Not only keep yourself clean but also the area around you clean and sanitized.
COVID-19 stays active on many surfaces for a day or two. For instance:
- It stays active on the plastic surface for 72 hours.
- On cardboard or a steel surface, the virus stays alive for 48 hours.
As soon as you enter the house after coming from outside, make it a habit to wash your hands for 20 seconds with clean water and antibacterial soap. It is highly recommended to change the clothes which you had worn outside before you go near your baby.
Before breastfeeding, bathing, or even before changing a diaper, make sure to wash your hands to avoid getting the baby infected. In case if you are outside and water isn’t available, use a sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
3. Wear A Mask
COVID-19 can spread when people breathe, talk, cough, or sneeze. When someone wears a mask, it minimizes the risk of the virus from reaching other people. Even if a person has no symptoms, he must wear a mask. Not all COVID-19 patients show symptoms.
Wearing a mask also can stop the virus from reaching you. Children under 2 years cannot wear a mask (It might result in shortness of breath or suffocation).
Therefore it becomes more important for every adult to wear the mask so that the others around them and especially the children are at a lower risk of catching an infection.
4. Clean And Disinfect Your House
Personal cleanliness alone cannot keep COVID-19 at bay. The virus can stay alive on numerous surfaces for more than 24 hours.
Make it a part of your daily routine to clean all the handles, doorknobs, taps, furniture, etc. Wipe them with soapy water or simply spray a disinfectant on it.
Things such as door handles, taps, doors, etc. are touched the most. Hence, it increases the chances of contamination and the spread of bacteria and germs.
Do not restrict your cleaning to these areas only. Thoroughly clean all the areas where your baby moves. Use a disinfectant liquid to mop the floor. Clean and sanitize all his things, for instance, his feeding items, furniture, clothes, and toys. Little ones are in a habit to put toys in their mouth. If the toys are contaminated it will increase the risk of infection.
A simple tip to save your time from cleaning the toys is to provide the baby with a limited number of toys each week. Rotate the toys each week so that the cleaning becomes easier.
5. Limit The Visitors
Do not let an army of visitors in your house. You never know who might be the carrier of the virus. Not every COVID-19 positive patient shows the symptoms. Asymptomatic patients do not show any signs of the virus.
Politely request your friends and family to stay indoors and limit their visits to your place. They will definitely understand your concern and will respect it. However, if any visitors are coming, make sure you request them to wear a mask and avoid touching, kissing, or hugging your baby.
6. Educating Children
Don’t expect the children to understand the urgency of the situation. Talk to them and make them aware of the virus. Make sure you don’t scare them. Create a story or something to make sure they understand.
Teach them how to wash their hands properly for 20 seconds after using the toilet, playing, eating, or coming inside the house from outside.
Also, instruct them to avoid touching their eyes, nose, and mouth unnecessarily. Do not be harsh on them if they do not understand or obey you. Give them something as a reward for listening to you, or for washing their hands correctly.
Toddlers feel delighted if you reward them with a star or candy. It will also motivate them to wash their hands more frequently.
7. Coughing And Sneezing In Elbow
Try to sneeze in a tissue. However when you don’t have a tissue, sneeze, or cough into your elbow. Wash your hands immediately with soap after sneezing or coughing. If you have sneezed into your elbow, make sure to wash it too and change the clothes.
Never carry the child immediately after sneezing. Always wash your hands and then pick them up. If you have used a tissue to sneeze or cough, discard it properly.
8. Give A Bath To Your Baby
Sanitizers contain alcoholic content which can be very abrasive and harsh for the gentle baby skin. If you had taken the baby somewhere with you, make sure you wash your hands and then give a bath to your baby.
Use lukewarm water and good antibacterial soap to give them a bath. Wash the clothes which they had worn outside. Don’t forget to sanitize the carrier or the stroller they were placed in.
9. Seek Medical Advice
If you start to develop any symptom of the virus then temporarily separate yourself from the baby. Call a family member or a friend to stay at your house and look after the baby until you are fully recovered.
Do not ignore the symptoms. Many patients who develop the symptoms are hesitant to get themselves tested. Do not risk your life and those around you. Seek a piece of medical advice immediately if the symptoms persist.
If in case you are tested positive for this virus, make sure that you quarantine yourself, ask someone to sanitize the house, and look after the baby in your absence.
10. Stay Informed
Be sure to be well aware of the prevailing situation in your city. Your little one can’t read the news, therefore, it’s very important for you to be aware of the latest information on the COVID-19 situation. To get authentic information about the virus, its symptoms, treatment, etc. please log on to the World Health Organization (WHO) website.
Seek advice from trustworthy and reliable sources for you and your baby. Do not believe everything that is available on the internet unless it is from an authentic source.
11. Don’t Panic
Listening to the number of active cases and an increase in the number of deaths can be very overwhelming for some parents. The constant anxiety and stress can tend to make them frustrated and agitated. Remember, your children can sense frustration. They pick up the vibes of their parents. Stay relaxed and happy to make your baby happy.
12. Follow The Guidelines
In order to keep your family Corona free, make sure that you are acting as a responsible person, and follow the guidelines provided by the government and medical experts. Corona may be detrimental if the immune system of the affected is weak. Even if your immunity is strong, still follow the guidelines.
You never know who might get affected because of you and lose his life. Be responsible, don’t make your baby suffer because of your irresponsibility.
Wrapping It Up!
The year 2020 has been life-altering for almost everyone across the globe. Many people have lost their lives, jobs, or their family members because of this pandemic.
For every parent, their children are the most prized possession and they will do everything to protect them from anything which might harm them.
COVID-19 hasn’t disappeared. Some countries are battling with the second wave of COVID-19. The government or doctors alone cannot fight this. Play your part in it too.
Take all the precautionary measures for your family. Avoid going out unnecessarily and when you have to, wear a mask. Practice proper hygiene and educate your family to do the same.
Stay safe and protect your little munchkins from being the target of COVID-19.