In an effort to combat the Zika crisis, the United States is offering a variety of ways for parents to prepare their children for the virus.
But some parents might find it difficult to accept that there is a higher chance of their children getting the virus than others.
“Parents who have children with a diagnosis of Zika, I would imagine, are more likely to see that their children are more vulnerable to this virus than people who are not,” says Michael J. Kiehl, a pediatrician at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.
Kiehl says that parents need to be aware of the possibility of the virus spreading to their children.
“We need to make sure that we are monitoring them, we are testing them, and we are keeping a close eye on them,” he says.
“When you see a child who has a fever or rash, I don’t think you want to make any decisions based on what they might be eating.
I think you need to get more informed.”
Dr. Robert Hsu, a physician at the University of Chicago Medical Center, is a pediatric infectious disease specialist.
In an article for the New England Journal of Medicine last month, Hsu said parents should consider what they are doing to protect their children from the virus, particularly if their child is in the hospital.
“I think you can be pretty conservative, but you should have some concern,” he said.
Hsu says parents need the ability to check on their children, but that they need to monitor their children at home and not rely on testing kits or other measures.
“The more you know about the virus and the more you see it, the more likely you are to be concerned about it,” he adds.
“It’s very important for parents, because you know, you’re keeping them safe, and that’s really important.”
Kiehls father, Dr. Mark J. Hsu , is the co-author of the New York Times best-selling book, The Zika Myth: How the World Misunderstands the Threat of Zika.
Kieshl says it is important to keep a close watch on a child, even if they have a fever, rash or other symptoms.
“Parents need to watch their child, and if they’re seeing a fever it’s important to check in with their child and make sure he’s OK,” he explains.
“You know, it’s a very dangerous disease and there’s no way to avoid it.
You just have to be prepared.””
If they have an elevated temperature, or you have a rash, it could be because you’ve been exposed to the virus.”
“You don’t want to wait until they’re having a fever.
And if they don’t have a temperature or rash it’s because they’ve had a fever,” Kiehles father adds.
The CDC and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are urging parents to monitor and treat their children with caution, as they have been doing for more than a decade.
“This is the second pandemic that’s been this bad, and the number of new cases has been this high, so parents need both time and resources,” Kieshl warns.
“If a child is having a rash or has an elevated fever, you need immediate medical attention, and also an assessment and follow-up.”
Parents are encouraged to be vigilant about what they eat, what they wear, and how they handle the weather.
Kietl said there is no one-size-fits-all approach to avoiding the spread, and parents can do a lot of things to make their kids feel safer.
“What we do as parents is, we try to give them as much of a window as we can of their environment, so they can get a sense of what they’re doing,” she says.
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends that parents limit the amount of time they spend with their children and stay home when they are not at home.
“For many people, that means that they’re spending all of their time in the house and not at school,” says Kiehs father.
“So we encourage parents to be very careful about what we do, because it may change how they’re thinking and feel about their kids.