Is My Child More Likely To Get COVID-19 Or The Flu? : Shots – Health News – NPR

For kids, the threat of severe consequences from COVID-19 is the same magnitude as the danger they face from the flu. But for moms and dads, specialists state, its a matter of viewpoint.

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For kids, the risk of serious effects from COVID-19 is the very same magnitude as the risk they face from the influenza. For moms and dads, specialists state, its a matter of viewpoint.

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For children in specific, the danger of severe consequences from COVID-19 is the same magnitude as the danger they deal with from the flu, she says. But lots of moms and dads seem more anxious about the new and less familiar illness. That stress and anxiety is increased by the new guidelines on mask-wearing. But professionals prompt parents to try not to worry too much. “If you stop going into shops due to the fact that youre frightened youll encounter an unmasked person, thats probably overreacting,” states Gretchen Chapman, a psychology teacher who studies health quandaries like this at Carnegie Mellon University. Its easy to understand why parents would feel that way, she says. Though these risks are very low, theyre not no. And individuals struggle to conceptualize the distinction in between little threats– for example, something thats 1 in 1,000 versus 1 in 1 million.

The CDC requires every kid admitted to a medical facility to be evaluated for the coronavirus. Dr. Roshni Mathew, a pediatric infectious illness expert at the Stanford University School of Medicine, says experience at her healthcare facility found that 45% of the time, a kid who tested positive for the coronavirus was not in fact ill with COVID-19. In those cases, hospitalization was due to “an entirely unassociated medical diagnosis, like appendicitis or thigh fracture or something else,” she states.

Theres likewise a small threat that the infection can pass to an unvaccinated child. The threat that a child gets seriously ill is exceptionally small– similar to the risk that children face of having major illness as a result of the flu. For kids in specific, the risk of serious effects from COVID-19 is the same magnitude as the risk they face from the influenza, she states. The obstacle will be not to assure parents about really low risks however to convince them to get their children immunized, to drive that low threat down even more. Now, kids 12 and older are qualified for the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, but the vaccines are being evaluated in younger kids.

A tiny threat has a small effect on the population as a whole, however parents naturally arent believing in terms of the population as a whole. “When youre a moms and dad and youre believing of your one or 2 kids, its truly all or nothing,” Chapman states. The risk is continuing to decrease, as COVID-19 rates fall and the opportunity of encountering an unmasked person with an infection lessens.

Even an immunized moms and dad can sometimes get infected with the coronavirus. Theres likewise a small risk that the infection can pass to an unvaccinated child. But the threat that a kid gets seriously ill is very small– similar to the danger that children face of having severe health problem as an outcome of the influenza. To date, out of more than 74 million kids in the United States, there have actually been about 300 COVID-19 deaths and a few thousand major diseases. By comparison, the CDC signed up 188 flu-related deaths in children during the 2019-2020 flu season. (This past year, there was essentially no influenza season at all.).

Quickly, the entire question will be switched on its head. The difficulty will be not to reassure moms and dads about very low dangers but to encourage them to get their kids vaccinated, to drive that low danger down even more. Right now, kids 12 and older are eligible for the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, but the vaccines are being tested in more youthful children. As soon as kids are qualified, COVID-19 “ends up being a vaccine-preventable infection,” Mathew states, “so you d take every chance to prevent each and every single pediatric death.” Only about two-thirds of children wind up being immunized for the flu. And vaccination is very important not simply for their own sake, however because children are a significant reason that the flu spreads rapidly through neighborhoods. Health officials are most likely to confront a comparable difficulty to encourage moms and dads to vaccinate their children versus COVID-19. You can contact NPR science correspondent Richard Harris at rharris@npr.org.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention made a strong declaration about the effectiveness of vaccines when it chose that totally vaccinated individuals dont need to wear masks in a lot of scenarios. It left some parents concerned about how the change might affect children too young to be immunized. Dr. Paul Offit, who heads the vaccine education center at Childrens Hospital of Philadelphia, says that the brand-new mask assistance is mostly good news. “But I think that has made this world a little less safe for young children,” he states.

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