COVID-19 stands for “coronavirus disease 2019.” It is caused by a virus called SARS-CoV-2. The virus first appeared in late 2019 and quickly spread around the world. People with COVID-19 can have fever, cough, trouble breathing and other symptoms. Problems with breathing happen when the infection affects the lungs and causes pneumonia. Most people who get COVID-19 will not get severely ill. But some do. In many areas, people have been told to stay at home and away from other people. This is to slow down the spread of the virus.
The virus mainly spreads from person to person and it usually happens when an infected person coughs, sneezes, or talks near other people. The virus is passed through tiny droplets from the infected person’s lungs and airway. These droplets travel through the air and get transmitted to other people who are nearby. It also spreads at gatherings when people are talking close together, shaking hands, hugging, sharing food. Eating at restaurants also raises the risk of infection since people tend to be close to each other and not covering their faces. It is also possible to get infected when you touch a surface that has the virus on it and then touch your mouth, nose, or eyes.
Yes, children of any age can get infected with COVID-19. They are less likely to get seriously ill, but it can still happen. It is possible for children to spread the virus to other people and can be dangerous for older people or who have other health problems.
Not really. In adults, common symptoms include fever and cough. In some other cases, people can develop pneumonia and have trouble in breathing. Children infected with COVID-19 can have these symptoms too but are less likely to get very sick, but some children do not have any symptoms at all. Other symptoms might include feeling very tired, shaking chills, headache, muscle aches, sore throat, a runny or stuffy nose, diarrhoea, or vomiting. Babies infected with COVID-19 might have trouble in feeding. There have been some reports of rashes or other skin symptoms. For example, some people with COVID-19 get reddish-purple spots on their fingers or toes. But it’s not clear why or how often this happens.
There have been reports of children with COVID-19 developing inflammation throughout the body. This can lead to organ damage if it is not treated quickly. Experts have used different names for this condition, including “multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children”(MISC ) and “paediatric multisystem inflammatory syndrome.” The symptoms can appear similar to another condition called “Kawasaki disease.” They include:
Experts are working on vaccines to prevent COVID-19. When a vaccine becomes widely available and when a lot of people get it, the virus will stop spreading so quickly. While we wait for a vaccine, there are other things people can do to reduce their chances of getting COVID-19. These things will also help slow the spread of infection.
If someone at your home is infected with COVID-19, they should stay in a separate room and should also wear a face mask. Everyone in the house should wash their hands often and clean the surfaces that are frequently touched. If you are sick and you have a baby, it’s important to be extra careful when breastfeeding or holding them. Till now it’s not known whether the virus can be spread through breast milk or not. You can protect your baby by washing your hands often and wear a face mask while you feed them.
It is normal to feel anxious or worried about COVID-19. It’s also normal to feel lonely when you can’t do your normal activities or see friends and relatives. And it can be hard to manage work and child care when your family has to stay at home.
You can help your child by: