Concern about coronavirus (COVID-19)
is high, but the risk for serious illness to children seems to be low. So far, most
reported cases of coronavirus have been in adults. Kids who do get it seem to have
milder infections than adults or older people.
Experts are still learning about COVID-19, so we don't have all the information
yet. Still, parents wonder what to do if their child gets sick.
What If My Child Gets a Fever, Cough, or Sore Throat? Could it Be Coronavirus
Do your best to stay calm.
Talk to a health care provider. You can:
Call your doctor. Your doctor knows your child's health history
and will know if your child has any special risks. The doctor will ask how your child
is doing and if they've been around someone with known or suspected coronavirus. Your
doctor's office will tell you what to do next and whether you need an in-person visit. or
Get a telehealth visit.
If this option is available in your area, a health care provider can see your child
while you stay at home. If you can, choose a telehealth provider who specializes in
caring for kids. If the doctor thinks your child needs care right away, they will
guide you on where to go. Check for telehealth in your area now, before anyone in
your family is sick.
Keep your child home. This keeps your child away from other germs.
It also helps prevent your child from spreading the illness to others. If the doctor
thinks your child might have coronavirus, the whole family will need to stay home.
Keep other people and pets in the house away from your child as much as possible.
If possible, have your sick child use a different bathroom from others. If that
isn't possible, wipe down the bathroom often.
Everyone in your family should wash
their hands well and often. Wash with soap and water for at least 20 seconds,
or use alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
Use regular household cleaners or wipes to clean things that get touched a lot
(doorknobs, light switches, toys, remote controls, phones, etc.). Do this every day.
Help your child get plenty of rest and drink lots of liquids.
Watch for signs that your child might need more medical help, such as trouble
breathing, fast breathing, sleepiness, not being able to drink a lot of liquids, or
signs of dehydration like peeing
less than usual.
Should I Get My Child Checked for Coronavirus (COVID-19)?
With the nonstop news coverage, it's easy to think that coronavirus symptoms are
an emergency. But it's important not to run to the ER at the first sign of fever.
Instead, call your doctor or use telehealth if your child has: