Coronavirus Updates and Resources

Protecting Children and Young Adults from Coronavirus

Published on March 31, 2020

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Since the first case of Coronavirus (COVID-19) in the U.S. was reported in January 2020, there have been a lot of misconceptions and half-truths in the media surrounding the new, unpredictable virus. One of the most common misconceptions is that only older adults (ages 65 and older) are at risk for infection. According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), COVID-19 can infect people of any age.

The CDC notes that older adults and people of any age who have serious underlying medical conditions might be at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19. That doesn’t mean children and young adults are immune. Everyone should be taking proper precautions to prevent COVID-19 infection and prevent further spreading.

Protecting Children from Coronavirus (COVID-19)

The COVID-19 outbreak is a rapidly developing situation, and there is still much to be understood about the disease. Based on available evidence, adults make up most of the known cases to date. According to this New York Times article, however, children are just as likely to become infected, but their symptoms tend to be less severe. Children can also pass COVID-19 onto others who may be at higher risk, including older adults and people who have serious underlying medical conditions.

You can protect your kids from COVID-19 and help slow the spread of the virus by taking these precautions:

Keep hands clean

Remind your children to wash their hands with soap and water for a duration of 20 seconds. They can help keep track of time by singing “Happy Birthday” or the ABCs, which takes about 20 seconds to finish. Have them use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available.

Avoid people who are sick

Remind your kids to stay away from people who are coughing, sneezing, or sick. Also, encourage your kids to practice proper sneezing and coughing etiquette. If they don’t already know about the “vampire sneeze maneuver,” teach them to cross their arm over their nose and mouth and sneeze – or cough – into their elbow to help prevent the spread of coronavirus.  

Maintain a clean environment

Be sure to clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces such as tables, hard-backed chairs, doorknobs, light switches, remotes, and toilets. With so many children home from school, this is a good time to teach them the importance of maintaining a clean and germ-free environment. Older children can even help out with the cleaning – as long as they are not using harmful chemicals.

Wash clothes regularly

With the COVID-19 outbreak, it might be a good time to ramp up laundry cycles in the household. Be sure to regularly launder children’s clothes, washable plush toys, and blankets in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions. The CDC recommends washing items using the warmest appropriate water setting for the items, then dry items completely.

Limit social interactions

The key to slowing the spread of COVID-19 is to limit physical contact as much as possible. Though it may be hard to resist now that you and your children have so much free time, you should avoid attending playdates, birthday parties, or any indoor social gatherings. Encourage children to play outside, if possible, but remind them to keep a safe distance from others. 

Coronavirus Precautions for Young Adults

On March 18, The CDC reported that, from February 12 to March 16, nearly 40% of American COVID-19 patients who were sick enough to be hospitalized were aged 20 to 54. On March 24, California Governor Gavin Newsom announced that 50% of California’s COVID-19 cases were made up of patients between the ages of 18 and 49.

Based on this information, young adults – in every state, regardless of their medical history – should treat the COVID-19 outbreak with caution and concern. Young adults must protect themselves and those around them from the spread of COVID-19.

Young adults can follow the same basic health precautions listed above. Here are some more ways you can protect yourself and others from COVID-19

Stay at home

We realize this may not be possible for those who work for essential businesses, but if you are able to telecommute or work from home during the Coronavirus pandemic, definitely do so. With so many state-mandated quarantine orders currently in place, most young adults don’t have a choice. You should also consider canceling any upcoming travel plans or social gatherings that require close physical proximity to more than ten people.   

Don’t touch your face

This is often easier said than done – many of us don’t realize how often we touch our face! But like hand washing, it’s imperative that we be mindful of how much we do it. To help prevent the spread of COVID-19, keep your hands away from your eyes, nose, and mouth. According to the CDC, touching the mucous membranes on your face with dirty hands allows germs that cause respiratory infections like COVID-19 to enter the body.

Connect virtually

Social distancing can be very challenging for extroverts and social butterflies. However, it is possible to socialize with friends and family while still protecting them from possible COVID-19 exposure. Connect with loved ones through video calls, phone calls, texts, or social media.

Stay healthy

We’re not just talking about your physical health, but your mental health as well! Click here for our suggestions and recommendations for maintaining positive mental health.

Stay informed

Social media is a great way to connect virtually, but it shouldn’t serve as a source for coronavirus-related news and updates. Unfortunately, social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, tend to spread rumors and misinformation. Make sure you are getting you information about COVID-19 from creditable, unbiased sources. Some suggestions include:


Our mission at e-Health is to support the health and well-being of individuals and small businesses. For additional insurance advice, health tips, and information on coverage, please visit eHealth.com

For information and guidelines specific to the coronavirus outbreak, visit cdc.gov

This article is for general information and should not be relied on as medical advice. Check with a medical professional for medical advice.

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