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Coronavirus pandemic: How safe is your child?

At this time of coronavirus outbreak, parents can encourage their children to help stop the spread of the virus by teaching them to do the following things

March 24, 2020 / 09:51 AM IST
Image: Pankaj Singh Tomar

Image: Pankaj Singh Tomar


Amid the coronavirus pandemic that has hit the world, parents who are worrying about their children and trying to protect them from getting infected can take a sigh of relief as kids do not appear to be at a high risk for COVID-19.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), based on available evidence, the risk for children is lower than their adult counterparts.

However, since parents are worried about the health and safety of their children, here are a few things that parents should know:

How can parents protect their children from COVID-19 infection?

As per the CDC, at this time of coronavirus outbreak, parents can encourage their children to help stop the spread of the virus by teaching them to do the following things:

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COVID-19 Vaccine

Frequently Asked Questions

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How does a vaccine work?

A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.

How many types of vaccines are there?

There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.

What does it take to develop a vaccine of this kind?

Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.

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> Clean hands often using soap and water or alcohol-based hand sanitizer

> Avoid people who are sick, particularly those who are coughing and sneezing

> Clean and disinfect high-touch surfaces daily in household common areas, such as tables, hard-backed chairs, doorknobs, light switches, remotes, handles, desks, toilets, sinks, etc.

> Launder items including washable plush toys as appropriate in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions. If possible, launder items using the warmest appropriate water setting for the items and dry items completely. Dirty laundry from an ill person can be washed with other people’s items.

Coronavirus LIVE updates

Are the symptoms of COVID-19 different in children than in adults?

No. The symptoms of COVID-19 are similar in children and adults. However, children with confirmed cases of coronavirus have generally presented with mild symptoms, said the CDC.

Reported symptoms in children include cold-like symptoms, such as fever, runny nose, and cough. Vomiting and diarrhea have also been reported. It’s not known yet whether some children may be at higher risk for severe illness, for example, children with underlying medical conditions and special healthcare needs. There is much more to be learned about how the disease impacts children, said the CDC.

Also read | Number of global coronavirus cases crosses 3,00,000

Should children wear masks?

No. If your child is healthy, there is no need for them to wear a facemask. Only people who have symptoms of illness or who are providing care to those who are ill should wear masks, according to the CDC.
Moneycontrol News
first published: Mar 24, 2020 09:51 am

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