Soap, water, wash, rinse, dry, repeat. It is a popular topic now a days. Over the past few months, the coronavirus has been a hot topic of conversation, especially over the last couple weeks. Although there are still a ton of unanswered questions, we at MKT hope to help you in anyway possible.
With schools shut down and play dates canceled, your kids might be feeling a bit restless and wondering what is going on or why they can’t just go to the movies or the park anymore. Lucky for you, we have condensed information about how to talk to your kids about this virus and help you simplify this complex conversation with your little ones. Let’s dig in.
What is the Coronavirus?
Let’s start with what a virus is. Basically, it’s an itty bitty germ that lives in cells attached to our skin and inside our body that can make us sick. The coronavirus is just a different type of germ that we have never seen before. It is called corona because ‘corona’ means ‘crown’ in Latin. When you look at these itty bitty germs under a microscope, it looks like the coronavirus is wearing a pointy crown , just like a king or queen wears. Unfortunately, the ‘spikes’ on ‘crown’ acts like a slide that the germs can go right down and land on the cells. Once the germs get to the cells, the virus makes a bunch of copies of itself. Just imagine finger painting and then putting your hand print all over the walls! It might seem like harmless at first, but really it makes a big mess that mommy and daddy will have to clean up. And even worse, sometimes it stains and you can’t get it out!
Basically, once the virus makes a bunch of copies of itself and gets everywhere, it can also infect other cells and may eventually make you sick. It may make you cough, have a runny nose, get a fever, and feel quite tired. Although many people can fight off this virus, some people can’t, and it can be scary. Older people (maybe your grandma or grandpa), as well as others who have other health conditions, can get very sick from it. So, it is super important that even if you don’t get sick, you should always wash your hands and stay clean so other people don’t get sick either.
Why do some people get sick and not others? Will I?
Let’s go back to the play ground again. The cells go down the spikey slide and land on the cells that create this coronavirus. Once the virus spreads, your body sends out an army to fight it. This army is called the immune system. While most people who get this virus may just cough or get a runny nose or fever, other people’s immune system (or internal army) may not fight hard enough. Or, the army might fight too hard and accidentally hurt its own healthy cells. Both of these can make people really sick.
If you feel sick, tell your parents, caregivers, or other adults. You may need to go to the doctor and get it checked out and may need to take a test. Luckily (what we know so far at least) kids don’t usually get very sick. There is no need to worry because all the adults are doing their best to keep everyone safe.
What should I do?
Wash you hands and sing a song to make sure you are scrubbing long enough. I love the ABC’s, Old MacDonald, or even Baby Shark to help pass the time. Avoid touching your face and try not to put your hands in your mouth! Remember to cough or sneeze into your elbow.
Stay home if you feel sick and even if you don’t. Right now, it’s best to stay home even if you feel healthy so you can help prevent any other of these bad germs from spreading, sliding down the slide, or getting paint all over your house.
What about therapy?
Right now our doors at MKT are still open and you are welcome to come to our clinic in person. We have a strict protocol in place and doing everything we can to ensure everyone’s health and safety. If you would rather not have to leave the house right now or don’t want to come in person but still want therapy services, you are in luck. Here at Might Kids, we are now implementing teletherapy. This means therapy over the computer screen! If you are a current patient, check your emails or call the clinic for more information. Basically, it will be a modified therapy session you can do from the comfort of your own home and see your personal therapist on a screen. Pretty cool right? Check it out!
We encourage you to decide for yourself what you think is best for you own situation. However, it’s best to hold off on play dates, birthday parties, and even the park. The best thing you can do to help others right now is watch movies in bed all day, color, read a book, learn to cook, do yoga, have a dance party at home, and do you therapy homework! And like anything else, remember that everything passes. Oh, and yes, you will have to go back to school once the coronavirus is under control. Until then, get comfy, sit back, and enjoy your time at home!
Written/adapted by: Liana Martinez, M.A., CCC-SLP
Information taken from LiveScience