American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and the Association of Children's Hospitals (CHA) said that almost 94,000 coronavirus cases are children. In the United States, vaccinations are legal for children over 12 years of age, but many of those hospitalized are even younger.
We have collected the most common questions about the coronavirus strain in children and how to protect yourself from it. So:
How dangerous is the Delta strain for children?
The Delta strain is more contagious than Alpha and the original coronavirus. The virus's ability to spread rapidly is of particular concern. In the US, according to the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), only 30% of children who are eligible for vaccination are vaccinated.
Researchers from King's College London conducted a study and published their findings in the medical journal Lancet Child and Adolescent Health. It says that children who contract the coronavirus rarely suffer from "post-coccygeal syndrome" and recover in less than a week. There are exceptions, but most children tolerate the coronavirus easily.
How likely are vaccinated parents to infect a child?
Vaccinated parents who are infected will have some amount of the virus that they can spread, but less than if they had not been vaccinated. In addition, cases of infection among vaccinated are still rare.
What are the symptoms?
The most common symptoms in children are headaches and fatigue. Also called the sore throat, loss of smell, fever. Doctors did not find a single case of neurological symptoms, such as seizures or loss of consciousness.
On average, older children usually get sick for a little longer than elementary school children. For example, children between the ages of 12 and 17 take a week to recover, while in young children the illness usually lasted five days.
"Postcovid syndrome" and children
In April, at a congressional hearing, National Institutes of Health Director Francis Collins announced the figures: 11 to 15% of infected young people could "face such long-term consequences."
The New York Times writes that "postcovid syndrome" interferes with their studies, sleep, and other aspects of life.
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, a relatively small percentage of patients have been hospitalized due to multisystem inflammatory syndrome, which can appear in older children a few weeks after recovering from Covid-19. A Boston hospital named such post-covid symptoms in adolescents: fatigue, headaches, blurred consciousness, problems with memory and concentration, sleep disturbances, constant changes in smell and taste.
In neighboring Russia, where the Delta strain dominates, they noticed that babies after Covid-19 may develop a Kawasaki-like syndrome, Radio Liberty reports. For children under 5 years of age, rash, swelling of the hands and feet, conjunctivitis, bright crimson color of the tongue and lips, and enlarged lymph nodes are more typical. Older children usually suffer from damage to internal organs, heart muscle, manifestations of shock, gastrointestinal syndromes. We have three children with a post-ovarian complication.
How to protect children from Delta strain?
Sean O'Leary, Pediatric Infectious Disease Specialist at Children's Hospital of Colorado, says it's important to ensure everyone has access to the vaccine, and this also applies to children. It is also advised to wear a mask indoors and wash your hands. Families were encouraged to spend as much time as possible outdoors with babies.
By the way, the Ministry of Health of Ukraine on July 17 recommended vaccinating children over 12 years old with the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine if the child:
- has high risks of severe course and development of complications due to concomitant diseases;
- leaves for a country where a vaccination certificate is required to cross the border;
- leaves for training in a country where a certificate is required to cross the border;
- is a participant in international sports competitions;
- came from another country where he received the first dose of the Pfizer vaccine.
To get vaccinated, parents of children 12-15 years old or children themselves aged 16-17 years contact a pediatrician or family doctor. Children aged 12+ receive 2 doses of 0.3 ml of Comirnaty / Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine with an interval of 21-28 days.
Will this affect the return of children to school?
Should I worry about sending my kids to school on September 1st? In the US, the CDC and the American Academy of Pediatrics have advised everyone in schools to wear masks, especially because "it is impossible to check who is vaccinated and who is not." If everyone is wearing masks, the chances of spreading the virus are much lower.
In Ukraine, education in schools will begin in full format from September 1, said Minister of Education and Science Serhiy Shkarlet.
"At the beginning of the school year, we are considering a situation when it is still warm, when there are no concomitant seasonal diseases, that we will go to school in full-scale mode," the minister said.
Shkarlet added that in Ukraine, schools will be able to work in the "red", "orange" and "yellow" quarantine zones if 80% of the staff of educational institutions is vaccinated.