Hey Moms, today I am going to discuss with you’ll about the trending topic these days. Any guesses? Yes! You’ll have guessed it right; it is about Coronavirus.
You’ll have heard in the news and social media about the outbreak of this virus rapidly spreading internationally. You may be worried about how to protect your kids or toddler from this epidemic virus, as even children in most parts of the world are infected with this virus. Being a mom, I can understand your worry, but instead of worrying and panicking, we must inform and educate our kids about this Coronavirus. So, in this article, I am going to discuss with you’ll some tips on how to educate your kid or keep him informed about this epidemic virus.
For keeping the kids informed of this epidemic, even you must know a little history about this virus. The Covid-19 was first reported in Wuhan, Hubei, in China, on the 17th of November 2019. After that, it rapidly spread to other parts of mainland China and other neighboring countries like Italy, South Korea, and Iran. Hence the World Health Organization was forced to declare the outbreak as an epidemic on the 11th of March, 2020. By the 13th of March 2020, more than 5,100 people out of the 139,000 infected have died, and more than 70,700 have recovered from cases confirmed in more than 130 countries. The virus seems to be spreading fast to people irrespective of their age, gender, race, and the current mortality rate lies at 5,400 people.
From a recent study conducted in China on 10 children, results showed that the infected children had mild symptoms as compared to adults who experienced headaches, muscle aches, and pneumonia. The 10 children were screened from 745 children who had close contact with those diagnosed with the Coronavirus or were families of the infected adults.
Therefore, it seems that children are at a lower risk of contracting the virus as the 10 infected kids only represented 1.3% of the 745 infected children. This should dispel any fears among parents who might be worried about their children dying from the fatal COVID-19 virus. However, children should still be informed about this virus in a way that will not make them more worried. Many children are already overwhelmed, anxious, or confused about what they hear or see in the news updates or the newspapers each day following the outbreak. So initially, you should make them feel comfortable, as you being a parent they will trust and listen to you.
Outlined below are the 10 tips on how to educate your kids about Coronavirus without raising the alarm or fear in them:
1. Control During Uncertainty
You may not fully know what your kids know about the outbreak of this Coronavirus. In such a doubt, you should ask your kid or children what they already know and follow their lead. Control plays a key factor in avoiding raising the issue, when the kid or children may be young, and not aware of the outbreak and how life-threatening it is. You should ask open questions on this issue and look for any signs of fear or shock in their body language. This will help you to figure out what all you need to tell your kids about Coronavirus. Although this disease has already been declared a pandemic, you should keep it as simple while discussing it with your kid. For example, you can tell your kid that this disease is just like the cold or flu with symptoms like normal fever and a cough.
Also, sometimes other symptoms may manifest, but some doctors and nurses can help the infected people when necessary. Discussing in this way might increase your kid’s confidence in their safety and will control any uncertainty about this virus and help to remove fear from your child’s mind.
2. Practice Good Hygiene
It is always important to teach your kids about hygiene practices irrespective of their age or knowledge about the virus. This is because children are at a higher risk of contracting the virus from poor hygiene, and its rapid transmittance at school, as the virus lives on surfaces for several hours after exposure. The practice of good hygiene involves washing the hands with soap and an alcohol sanitizer frequently from running tap water. Hands must be washed mostly after going to the toilet, before and after meals or snacks, and also after coming from public places or gatherings such as schools, hospitals, markets, etc. You should always make your family wash their hands before and after a meal, to set a good example of hygiene. Tell your kids always sneeze or cough into a tissue paper and dispose it immediately to avoid spreading the virus if they have it. Shaking hands while greeting should be stopped to prevent further spreading of the disease. This may be hard for the kids to remember, so you can teach your kids some other cool ways of greeting that do not involve hands.
3. Be Careful With The News Media
With the widespread of the Coronavirus internationally, you may turn on the news or scroll through social media to know more about the latest information on this virus. Children easily believe everything they hear from news media (including online searches on the outbreak of the virus). If you don’t advise them rightly, they may end up believing everything, including some twists and misinformation of this virus. Facts made by some online media sites might paint a picture of the virus being totally out of control and life-threatening. So you must control what your child listens to or watches to dispel any fears or anxiety.
4. Stay With The Facts
There has been a lot of false information circulated in social media, such as an infected patient can be healed of the COVID-19 by simply having a hot bath or drinking boiled garlic juice. This information should not be transferred to the kids as they may end up living a hygiene-free life, trusting that the virus has a cure. You can seek the correct information about the virus from trusted online websites such as the World Health Organization website, instead of other websites. Among the already confirmed facts of the virus that you can share with your kids are as follows:
- You should know that Coronavirus belongs to a family of viruses that can cause illnesses such as the common cold. It also has mild symptoms such as a running nose, sore throat, cough, and fever.
- Severe cases of Coronavirus may lead to pneumonia or breathing difficulties.
- In rare cases, the disease may be fatal, especially in older people and people with other medical conditions such as diabetes, asthma, or heart disease.
- The COVID-19 is at least 10X more deadly than the flu, but 1/10 as bad as SARS.
- Most of the symptoms of Coronavirus may appear 2 to 14 days after exposure, and you should filter the facts to tell your kids while at the same time avoiding raising fears.
5. Talk About Your Feelings
Watching and listening to the news about Coronavirus may leave even the adult in a state of fear, worry, and anxiety. Although this may be experienced more by the children, you should not be afraid of opening up about your concern to the kids. However, you should assure your kid that taking the right precautions may help them protect against contracting the virus. If they are already infected, you should take up the role of setting an example by being calm about the situation and hoping for the best outcome.
6. Don’t Pass On Your Fear
You must carry out daily activities in a way that portrays control of the situation. Doing this will help your kid to quickly recover from any fear he previously had before opening up to you. Children imitate how their parents react to a situation, and if you show that you are scared even when there is nothing to fear, then your kids will get the more fearful, which may be harmful to their overall health. You should carefully research the Coronavirus to be fully informed on the dangers, the risks, and ways of mitigating it. Doing so will remove any fears from your as well as from your kid’s mind.
7. Keep On Living Life
When the children watch the updates on the COVID-19 in the news media, the breaking news may be heartbreaking to them to the extent of stirring the fear of what may happen in the future. They may see that they are at the risk of losing their life anytime, thereby developing a pessimistic and carefree attitude. This may, in turn, affect their overall performance in school, their social life, and discipline. It is up to you to stress the need for them to carry on with their school and social life as usual; all they need to do is to practice good hygiene.
8. Work Together
You should always encourage your kid or children to have the spirit of togetherness in everything they do at school or home. This can be done by letting them do chores or play together while wearing protective gear. The change in their social lifestyle should not be an excuse for false suspicions of selfishness to one another. On the contrary, it should bring them together as they strive to ensure hygiene in their surroundings and happiness each day. You should educate your child not to tease or bully his friends by removing masks, gloves, or steal their tissues.
9. Take Care Of Yourself
Taking care of oneself is a major selfless thing that one can do to prevent the spread of the virus. People who have recently returned from a trip from an area having infected Coronavirus patients are at the risk of getting infected by COVID-19. Also, coming in contact with someone who has the virus such as a family member, a friend, or a health care worker must be avoided to prevent this illness. By taking care of yourself, you can be at less likely risk of contracting the virus. At the same time, if one already has the infection, taking care of oneself will reduce the rapid spread. After knowing how the virus is spread, children should also be educated on how to take good care of themselves to prevent the pandemic. The World Health Organization recommends:
- Always wear a face mask and hygienic gloves when in public gatherings and avoid touching the front of the mask when wearing.
- Replace a mask with a new one as soon it is damp and does not re-use a single-use mask.
- The mask should always be removed from behind, discarded immediately, and one should clean hands with alcohol-based hand sanitizer or soap and water.
- Wash hands frequently.
- Avoid touching any surfaces and then touching one’s eyes, nose, or mouth.
- Avoid close contact.
- Avoid sharing dishes, glasses, bedding, and other household items if one is sick.
10. Close Conversations With Care
Close interactions with infected persons have led to the rapid spread of this virus. COVID-19 spreads in a way similar to influenza, via respiratory droplets from coughing. The time between exposure and symptoms onset is typically five days but may range from two to fourteen days. The long time taken for the initial symptoms to manifest makes it hard to know who is infected or not. This may pose a high risk to the children since they tend to interact much in schools and many other social settings. However, for them to be on the safe side, they should be taught how to have close conversations with the utmost care. This includes always wearing a mask, avoiding handshakes, and maintaining other hygienic practices when at social gatherings.
Apart from the above 10 tips on how to educate your kids about Coronavirus, if you know any other preventive measures, then you should always feel free to deploy them. This will ensure that your children are at low risk of contracting the virus and live a good life free from fear, anxiety, or confusion from the happenings.
So mom’s if you’ll found this article helpful then do share it with other moms. Also, if you know any other way of educating children about this virus, then do let us know in the comment section below.