Catching Cold Does Not Necessarily Testify Your Child Being Affected By Coronavirus- Know What Experts Have To Say

by Gowthamy Alagiri, March 27, 2020

As per the World Health Organization (WHO), primary symptoms of the coronavirus disease COVID-19 are – 

  • Fever.

  • Dry cough.

  • Tiredness.

Shortness of breath can also be one of the primary symptoms as per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

WHO says that other symptoms can include sore throat, aches, and bodily pains; runny nose, nausea, and diarrhoea are symptoms showcased by only a few coronavirus patients.

As you can see, these symptoms are similar to influenza. Hence, if your child is exhibiting cold, it does not necessarily mean that he/she has COVID-19. 

COVID-19’s Effect on Children 

As per the CDC, the symptoms of COVID-19 exhibited by children are similar to that of adults. However, affected children have usually showcased mild symptoms, which include fever, cough, and runny nose.

According to WHO, the chances of children being affected by COVID-19 is highly unlikely. Additionally, the chances of this disease being fatal to children are even more improbable.

What Should You Do If Your Child Has Mild Cold or Flu-like Symptoms?  

Firstly, there is no need to worry if your child showcases mild cold or flu-like symptoms. Maintaining calm and not panicking is crucial in such situations. 

You can do the following in such cases –

1. Contact your Local Paediatrician

It is advisable to contact your local paediatrician. If available, you can contact him/her over a video call.

Paediatrics specialists recommend not taking your child to a hospital if he/she exhibits such mild symptoms.   

2. Keep your Child under Isolation 

It is necessary to keep your child isolated from others and pets as it will eliminate the risk of community transmission to some extent. 

3. Use a Face Mask 

Both the family members and your child should wear a face mask during these times, especially when going outdoors for whatever reasons.  

4. Provide them with Fluids 

Ensure your child takes aplenty fluids. Also, it is necessary for him/her to get adequate rest and sleep.  

5. Keep a Look-out for other Symptoms 

Make sure to check for other more critical symptoms, which have been mentioned here earlier. If displayed, seek appropriate medical help.

6. Avoid Public Transport and Public Places 

It is highly advisable not to take public transport or visit public places during these times. Staying indoors and maintaining social distancing is recommended.  

Above all, you also need to take care of the mental wellbeing of your child even when he/she is not sick as the majority of the country is in lockdown. 

CDC recommends helping your child stay agile by partaking in various indoor games. Also, help your child connect with friends and other family members over the phone.

How to Keep Your Children Safe?  

To keep your children safe from COVID-19, you can exercise the following –

  • Maintain distance from sick people.

  • Instruct your child to wash his/her hands often with soap or hand wash for at least 20 seconds by following these steps –

Step 1. Rub hands palm-to-palm after applying soap.

Step 2. Place the right palm over the back of the left and vice versa and rub.

Step 3. Interlock fingers and rub.

Step 4. Rub each thumb rotationally with the opposite palm.

Step 5. Clasp fingers of one hand to rub the opposite palm rotationally.

Step 6. Rinse hand with water.

Step 7. Dry with a clean cloth or paper towel.  

If hand wash or soap is not available, then use hand sanitizers that have at least 60% alcohol content.  

  • Instruct them to cough with a flexed elbow as cover.

  • Tell them not to touch their eyes, mouth, or nose with unclean hands.

  • Keep surfaces and objects that are touched more often clean and disinfected. Some of these can include –

  1. Switches.

  2. Dorr handles and knobs.

  3. Remote controls.

  4. Chairs.

  5. Tables.

  6. Sinks.

  7. Faucets.

  • Keep plush toys that are washable clean as per the instructions mentioned. Use warm water, if possible, for cleaning.

By maintaining personal hygiene and following the tips mentioned above, you can keep your children and your family safe from this disease.

COVID-19 Studies and Researches Concerning Children  

There have been several studies and research conducted during this ongoing pandemic. Some of these are mentioned below - 

Study 1 

The Chinese Centres for Disease Control and Prevention conducted a research based on 72,314 confirmed (62%) and suspected (22%), clinically-diagnosed (15%), and asymptomatic (1%) cases of COVID-19. 

Out of these, those affected under the age of 10 were only 416 and those aged between 10 and 19 years were 549.

The symptoms showcased by 81% of the those under 19 were mild. Only 5% of cases were critical. There were no cases of fatality under the age of 9.

Study 2 

A study conducted by various institutes, hospitals, and research centres in China, the US, and Hong Kong published in The New England Journal of Medicine found that only 171 children were infected by COVID-19 among 1319 assessed. 

The age range of the assessed children was 1 day to 15 years. The majority of the affected had a cough, fever, and pharyngeal erythema (reddish throat).

Study 3

The American Academy of Pediatrics published a study conducted by various Chinese medical institutes, research centres, and universities, which found 1412 suspected cases and 731 confirmed cases of COVID-19 of children between ages of 7 and 13.

The study found that the initial symptoms were moderate, mild, or asymptomatic in 90% cases. These symptoms had an average onset time of 2 days. The affected displayed a rapid increase of symptoms in the early stage, followed by a steady and gradual decrease of the same in the later stages.

Myths about COVID-19

  1. Only the Elderly are at risk of contracting the virus 

No. 

The disease can affect all, irrespective of their age. However, the chances of it critically or severely affecting the elderly are high. Conversely, the chances of this disease being contracted by children are low.

  1. Wearing a face mask is highly effective against this disease 

No.

Medical experts have only advised healthcare workers, those affected, and those treating the affected to wear face masks. 

There is limited evidence suggesting whether healthy individuals can protect themselves by wearing such masks.

  1. Coronavirus is the deadliest virus

No.

There have been viruses that are deadlier than the SARS-CoV-2. Even though there is no corrective medicine available, the disease can be cured without any special medicine in several cases.

  1. Spread of the virus will decrease during the summer

There has not been any concrete evidence that suggests that the virus dies at high temperatures. The majority of researchers and medical professionals are pessimistic about the fact that summer or warm climate will have any impact on this virus.

Vedantu – We are Helping Your Child Stay Educated During this Lockdown  

We at Vedantu know the importance of your child’s education, and even more so during this lockdown with all schools and educational institutes closed.

So, we bring our online live classes and content for your children at zero costs. These classes are available for students studying in standards 1 to 12.

Your child will not miss out on his/her regular studies through these online classes. We have some of the best teachers from across India to help your child in every subject.

He/she can become part of our scheduled classes, assignments, tasks, quizzes, etc. There are also unlimited sessions for doubt clearing, which are facilitated through our Q&A section. After each class, the respective teachers will conduct these sessions and resolve any and all queries.

Not only for children but those preparing for exams like NEET and IIT JEE can also take part in our live interactive classes. Now keep your child's preparation undeterred with our study material and NCERT Solutions Class 1 to 12 all subjects available on Vedantu site.

All students have to do is register for free at Vedantu’s official website or app. By downloading the official app, your child can learn on the go.

Catching Cold Does Not Necessarily Testify Your Child Being Affected By Coronavirus- Know What Experts Have To Say