How Can I Protect My Baby From Coronavirus?

Spread the love

Until infants are able to be directly protected from coronavirus through vaccination, there are ways to protect your baby from COVID-19:

  • Get vaccinated with any available COVID vaccine as soon as possible. By vaccinating adults who care for infants, the risk for children in the home declines.
  • Limit outings with your baby, especially if your community infection rates are high. Utilize delivery services and carryout whenever available.
  • Limit visitors to your home. Any unvaccinated individuals invited into your home should wear a mask while inside and while holding your infant.
  • Breastfeed or provide human milk, if you’re able.
  • Keep sick people away from your baby. This includes siblings and other care providers.
  • Continue routine pediatric in-person well visits. Pediatric offices across the country have taken steps to ensure their office environment is safe for patients and their families. At infant well visits, physicians can identify and treat growth and development issues, as well as ensure routine infant vaccinations are administered on time.

Tips for Caring for Your Baby if You Have Coronavirus

  • If you’re positive for COVID-19, take special care of yourself and your infant.
  • Talk with your personal physician about the risks of caring for your infant while infected.
  • Wear a mask at home and while caring for your infant.
  • Do not place a mask or face shield on your infant.
  • Wash your hands frequently, especially just before breastfeeding. Routinely clean commonly touched surfaces.
  • As you are able, maintain a distance from your infant while not providing direct care or feeding, until your isolation period is complete.
  • Continue to offer human milk, if able.
COVID safety for babies

To mask, or not to mask?

If you’re going out in public, you know by now to grab a mask for yourself. For infants, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says to avoid masking and focus on keeping a six-foot distance from others instead. “It would be best to keep the baby out of public as much as possible, but if a trip somewhere is necessary, the parents should keep him or her in a stroller, covered with a light muslin blanket. Just be careful not to do this in the car or any place without air conditioning, as it can get warm for baby.”

Family frenzy

“If it were my newborn baby, I would be nesting for a minimum of one month, but probably closer to three months, and there would be no visitors except for immediate family members who have quarantined appropriately,” said Dr. Maione. “Visitors would need to wear an effective mask, wash their hands, and definitely not kiss the baby. I personally would not feel comfortable until a person tested negative for COVID twice. This is extreme, I know, but if parents are looking for the safest recommendations out there, these are the ones.”

Introducing your infant

If you plan to allow people to visit your new baby, Dr. Maione suggests moms and dads make sure those guests:

  • Have not experienced COVID-19 symptoms in the last 14 days.
  • Have not brought along smaller children, who tend not to cover coughs or sneezes.
  • Have brought an appropriate mask.
  • Have washed their hands thoroughly before touching the baby.
How to Parent a Newborn During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Keep Your Well-Baby Visits

A video visit is more ideal than a phone call, says Dr. Dougherty, because it allows the doctor to see the interaction between the parents and the baby, ask questions, and even assess any roadblocks with breastfeeding, if needed.

But your pediatrician can schedule a more thorough in-office follow-up if they notice anything concerning over video, such as a respiratory problem, says Dr. Dougherty. Otherwise, they can continue to monitor problems, such as diaper rash, feeding and/or forceful spitting up, through subsequent video check-ins.

How to Handle Vaccine Appointments

Even if your well visits have moved online, you’ll likely still need to bring your baby into your doctor’s office to get their vaccines. Delaying them usually isn’t advised because the timing is critical to protect them against diseases like meningitis and whooping cough, explains Dr. Dougherty.

Still, given the current level of risk (especially for a baby born prematurely or with another health condition), he adds, some vaccine appointments may need to be delayed. You and your pediatrician can discuss and make the safest timeline for your little one.

Stay Safe When Stepping Outside

Now is the time to lean into staying home and safe while enjoying extra snuggle time. When you need to go out, enjoy solo walks in the fresh air with your baby while making sure to keep a six-foot distance from others. These are great for your mental health as well. Dr. Dougherty says the risk to your baby is low because they will be in their stroller and not touching any surfaces. However, he says it’s best to avoid bringing your baby into the grocery store and pharmacy since it may be harder to maintain distance from others.

If you are starved for parent-to-parent interaction, look to see if any local parent groups in your area have moved to online meetings.

Get the Supplies You Need

If you can’t find what you need in the store or online, try reaching out to the supplier or manufacturer directly. They may have more in stock and could send it directly to you. If you’re in a pinch, you can also ask your pediatrician’s office if they have extra samples or if there’s an alternative brand that will work for your baby for the time being.

Always Ask for Help When Needed

Getting help for child care isn’t likely right now. That’s why careful planning is more important than ever to make sure you have what you need to get through the day, says Dr. Singh.

If you have a partner, make an effort to split responsibilities. “Partners sharing responsibility would be critical at this time so that one parent does not get overwhelmed,” she says. “Make a list of things each one will do, and times of the day when one person can get a break, including shifts overnight.”

Coronavirus (COVID-19): How to Protect Babies and Toddlers
How Can I Protect My Baby or Toddler From Coronavirus Infection?

You can protect your little one by avoiding large crowds and keeping a safe distance (at least 6 feet) from other people when out of the house.

  • At home and in public, do all you can to help stop the spread of the virus:
  • Avoid people who are sick.
  • Wash your hands well and often, and teach others in your home to do the same. This is especially important: when you go back into your home from being outside before handling your child before breastfeeding or preparing a bottle or food
  • Clean surfaces and objects that people touch a lot (like doorknobs, countertops, and cellphones).
  • Try not to touch your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Sneeze or cough into a tissue or your elbow, not your hands.
  • Wear a mask at home if you are sick. Try to limit contact with your child until your symptoms have stopped.
  • If you take your child out in an infant carrier, you can place a blanket over the carrier while it’s within your view. Make sure the blanket doesn’t touch the baby. Wipe down the carrier or stroller when you get home.

Can I Take My Child to the Doctor’s Office for Vaccines and Other Care?

During this time, stay in touch with your child’s doctor about:

Vaccines and well visits.

Keeping your child’s vaccines up to date is a key way to keep your child healthy. Ask how your health care provider is giving vaccines and doing regular checkups. Some do well visits through telehealth while others might postpone an in-person visit. For newborns or children with complex medical conditions, they may want to schedule an in-person visit right away. They will work with you to answer your questions and make sure your child gets any needed vaccines and checkups.

Sick visits

If you think your child is sick, don’t wait to get care. Call your doctor for advice or instructions.

How Can I Protect My Baby From Coronavirus?

Until infants are able to be directly protected from coronavirus through vaccination, there are ways to protect your baby from COVID-19:

  • Get vaccinated with any available COVID vaccine as soon as possible. By vaccinating adults who care for infants, the risk for children in the home declines.
  • Limit outings with your baby, especially if your community infection rates are high. Utilize delivery services and carryout whenever available.
  • Limit visitors to your home. Any unvaccinated individuals invited into your home should wear a mask while inside and while holding your infant.
  • Breastfeed or provide human milk, if you’re able.
  • Keep sick people away from your baby. This includes siblings and other care providers.
  • Continue routine pediatric in-person well visits. Pediatric offices across the country have taken steps to ensure their office environment is safe for patients and their families. At infant well visits, physicians can identify and treat growth and development issues, as well as ensure routine infant vaccinations are administered on time.

Tips for Caring for Your Baby if You Have Coronavirus

If you’re positive for COVID-19, take special care of yourself and your infant.

  • Talk with your personal physician about the risks of caring for your infant while infected.
  • Wear a mask at home and while caring for your infant.
  • Do not place a mask or face shield on your infant.
  • Wash your hands frequently, especially just before breastfeeding.
  • Routinely clean commonly touched surfaces.
  • As you are able, maintain a distance from your infant while not providing direct care or feeding, until your isolation period is complete.
  • Continue to offer human milk, if able.
5 Ways to Protect Your Newborn During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Don’t put a mask on your baby but wear your own if you’re around others.

Children under 2 years old should not wear face coverings. Babies are squirmy, and this movement could cause a mask or faceshield to block their nose and mouth, increasing the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) or suffocation. But, don’t forget to wear yours when you leave the house to protect yourself and your baby.

Limit visitors for the time being.

New babies usually mean celebrations— but try to hold off on those for now. Bringing visitors into your home can increase the risk of COVID-19 to you, your baby, and your family. Opt for a virtual celebration, and gather when it’s safe to do so.

Social distance your baby.

Other than healthcare visits and childcare, limit taking your baby to places outside of your home as much as possible. If you must, keep your baby atleast 6 feet away from those outside your household. Also, ask your childcare facility what steps they’re taking to protect you, your family, and their staff.

Stay up-to-date with your baby’s routine checkups.

Routine healthcare is always important— but it’s even more critical during a pandemic. Don’t skip baby’s healthcare appointments. When possible, do newborn visits in person, so your child’s pediatrician can do important screening tests to check development.

Know the signs of COVID-19 in babies.

Monitor your baby for signs of COVID-19, including:

  • Fever (100.4°F or higher)
  • Runny nose
  • Cough
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrheas
  • Poor feeding
  • Being overly tired
  • Trouble breathing
View Sources

https://www.forbes.com/health/family/dear-pediatrician-protect-my-baby-from-coronavirus/#q_how_can_i_protect_my_baby_from_coronavirus_section

COVID safety for babies

https://www.baptistjax.com/juice/stories/covid19/covid-safety-for-babies

How to parent a newborn during the COVID-19 Pandemic

https://www.parents.com/baby/care/how-to-parent-a-newborn-during-the-covid-19-pandemic/

Coronavirus (COVID-19): How to Protect Babies and Toddlers

https://kp.qumucloud.com/view/22iB7oGSR0p

How Can I Protect My Baby From Coronavirus?

https://www.forbes.com/health/family/dear-pediatrician-protect-my-baby-from-coronavirus/#q_how_can_i_protect_my_baby_from_coronavirus_section

5 Ways to Protect Your Newborn During the COVID-19 Pandemic

https://www.childrensomaha.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/Childrens-5-Ways-Protect-Newborns-COVID-IG.pdf