Source: Johns Hopkins medicine
With the emergence of the second wave of Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) has led to serious concerns among people. Especially little awareness around the special needs of children during this time brings parents in a state of panic. Below are a few ways frequently asked questions addressing the same:
SHOULD CHILDREN WEAR A MASK?
WHO and UNICEF advocate the use of masks for children especially above 2 years of age. Such widespread transmission of the Virus reason enough for compulsory usage of masks but most definitely under adult supervision and care.
SHOULD CHILDREN WHO HAVE HEALTH OR A MEDICAL CONDITION THAT COMPROMISES THEIR IMMUNE SYSTEM WEAR A MASK?
Children with underlying health should wear the right mask in consultation with their doctor. A mask provides protection to the child wearing the mask and prevents transmission to others. It is recommended for anyone who has underlying health conditions that put them at greater risk of serious illness.
WHAT TYPE OF MASK SHOULD CHILDREN WEAR?
Children must wear quality certified masks which have been manufactured with attention and detail to their usage for kids specifically. The adult who is providing the mask should ensure the mask is the correct size and fits the child well. The mask must be comfortable to wear and must sufficiently cover the nose, mouth and chin of the child.
HOW SHOULD CHILDREN WEAR A MASK?
Children should follow the same principles as adults for wearing masks properly not touching the front of the mask and not pulling it under the chin or into their mouth. It is a challenge for the parents to control children from touching their faces, but consistent efforts can lead to higher safety for the child. When not in use, the parent should store the mask in a clean bag and ensure not the mask is not shared or re-worn without washing. At the time of disposal, the parent must also ensure proper disposal of mask to eliminate any risk of spread.
SHOULD A CHILD WEAR A MASK AT HOME?
Any child who has symptoms suggestive of COVID-19 should wear the masks at home too for as any hours as possible in addition to being in isolation with the caregiver. Family members/caregivers who come within 1 meter of the sick child at home should also wear a mask. In case one of the parents is infected, they must immediately isolate themselves from the child. And medical advice must be taken to prevent any unforeseen event.
Especially with regards to children, it is important for us to understand that there is still a lot to be learned about how this virus can affect children. Hence, it becomes all the more important to keep our guards up to keep our children safe and ensure their physical and mental well-being in these tough times.