Parents Beware! Don’t Let Misinformation Harm Your Children During the Coronavirus Pandemic
by Sagar Mankar,
March 20, 2020
The coronavirus disease or COVID-19 has affected more than 2,00,000 people globally, for which, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has classified it as a pandemic.
In India, the affected number is around 170. The Central and state governments have implemented several strict regulations to keep that number under control. Several states have also imposed Section 144, prohibiting gatherings of more than 5 people.
Till now, social distancing, proper hygiene, and covering mouth, eyes, and nose have been the only ways to prevent contamination. Even though clinical trials are on-going with few pharmaceuticals claiming to have produced a cure, corrective medicine for COVID-19 is still non-existent.
In such situations, protecting your child is all the more crucial, even though a more significant portion of the affected masses are adults. For parents, it is necessary to keep your children protected from this disease and educate them of the precautions.
To do so, it is critical to follow specific directions. However, there is ample misinformation you can come across on the internet and from several individuals.
It is highly advisable to stay clear from such information, which can include the following, as directed by WHO and CDC –
1. The Disease Only Affects The Elderly
As per the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), children are not at higher risk of being infected by COVID-19. The majority of individuals affected are adults, with higher chances among those suffering from cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, and asthma.
Only 0.8% and 0.5% of the affected are between the ages of 0 to 9 in South Korea and Italy, respectively.
However, it is best to take precautionary measures at all times to ensure that your child is safe from the disease.
2. COVID-19 Symptoms are Different in Children
The symptoms of this disease are similar in both children and adults. However, symptoms in affected children have been mild, which include cough, runny nose, and fever. Some have also exhibited symptoms of diarrhoea and vomiting.
As of now, there is no evidence that whether children with underlying diseases are at more risk of contracting the COVID-19.
3. Spraying Chlorine or Alcohol Over One’s Body can Kill The Virus
Chlorine and Alcohol can be useful as disinfectants. However, those DO NOT play any role, whatsoever, in killing the coronavirus.
4. Hand Dryers can Kill The Coronavirus
Hand dryers do not have any effect on the coronavirus. As a matter of fact, hand dryers have been known to spread viruses.
There have been multiple studies that found hand dryers and high-speed jet air dryers catalyse the spread of viruses and bacteria. The University of Connecticut conducted a study where they found that Petri dishes kept in a bathroom had about 1 bacterial colony. On the other hand, those placed under hand dryers had 18 to 60 bacterial colonies.
Sticking to good old fashioned paper towels have been reported to be a much safer alternative to hand dryers.
5. Pneumonia Vaccines can Fight Against COVID-19
Vaccines for pneumonia, such as Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib) and pneumococcal vaccine, can protect against the respiratory illness that this disease or any other diseases cause. Such vaccinations cannot cure COVID-19, however.
As mentioned above, no medicine or vaccination for COVID-19 is known to date. There are only a few medicines that might show promising results to fight the disease. However, clinical trials are awaited.
6. Antibiotics are Effective Against The Disease
Since COVID-19 is caused by a virus, antibiotics will have NO impact on it. Antibiotics are only administered in case of bacterial infections that can, however, be caused by this disease. Patients may receive antibiotics as there are chances of bacterial co-infection from the coronavirus.
7. Wearing a Face Mask can Protect You From Getting the Disease
Simply wearing a face mask DO NOT restrict the contraction of this disease.
Face masks are only recommended to help you avoid touching your nose or mouth in case you have unclean hands.
Most importantly, these are more necessary for those who are affected, tending to an infected person, and medical professionals. Hence, if you or your child does not show any symptoms of COVID-19, there is no need to wear a mask.
8. Eating Garlic, Garlic Soup, Drinkable Silver Can Cure COVID-19
There has been misinformation surrounding the internet that garlic soup, garlic, drinkable silver, essential oils, and many more can cure this disease. However, as of date, there is no known evidence supporting the fact that these can be effective against COVID-19.
9. Taking a Hot Bath can Prevent the Disease
The normal body temperature ranges between 36.5°C to 37°C. Hence, taking a hot bath will not have any effect on COVID-19.
10, Hot and Humid Weather can Kill the Coronavirus
Even though the spread of Covid-19 has mostly been in countries with colder weather, WHO says that it can spread in ANY REGION, even ones with hot and humid weather.
However, researchers, scientists, and medical professionals are looking towards the onset of summer to understand the spread of COVID-19. Some believe that a warmer climate might have an impact on the disease.
On the other hand, research conducted by the Journal of Hospital Infection found that the virus can stay alive for days at temperatures of up to 25° C.
11. Mosquitoes can Carry The Coronavirus
Till date, there is NO evidence that the coronavirus can be transmitted through mosquitoes. The primary way the virus spreads is through saliva or nose discharge, which can be via coughing or sneezing, respectively.
How Does COVID-19 Spread?
The primary way this disease spreads is when a healthy person comes in contact with an infected one, who may have picked up the coronavirus while travelling to an affected country.
Till date, there is no evidence of community transmission of COVID-19 in India. Meaning, there has been no infected patient whose source of infection is unknown.
How Can You Protect Your Child from COVID-19?
Based on the above information, the chances of your child contracting COVID-19 is extremely low. However, to be on the safe side, you can practice the following –
Keep yourself and your child at a distance from people who are sneezing or coughing.
Instruct your child to wash his/her hands as frequently as possible.
Tell him/her not to touch their mouth or nose with unwashed hands.
Clean washable plush toys as per instructions; use warm water to do so if possible.
Clean and disinfect surfaces that are touched the most. For example, toilets, switches, door handles/knobs, chairs, tables, remotes, sink, etc.
Vedantu – By Your Child’s Side During this Pandemic
During this quarantine situation and social distancing, you must ensure that your child’s education is not hampered.
We at Vedantu understand the importance of education as governments shut down schools and other educational institutes. To address this situation, we have made our live classes & content free for all.
The online tutoring classes that we offer will help your child immensely during these times. They can take part in scheduled live interactive classes, quizzes, complete tasks and assignments, and more.
Plus, we also offer online tuitions. Students can post their queries in the Q&A section, which will be solved by the respective teacher at the end of each class.
Your child will learn from some of India’s best teachers, who will help him/her at every step possible in their academic pursuits.
The online classes are available for classes 1 through 12. Not only that, but there are also classes for preparations of competitive exams such as JEE and NEET.
These live online classes are available from our official website and smartphone app. Your child only needs to register to create a free account. Download the Vedantu app to let your child learn anytime, anywhere. Now keep your child's preparation undeterred with our study material and NCERT Solutions Class 1 to 12 all subjects available on Vedantu site.