Due to the “I am untouchable” type of mentality, cases of C-19 are increasing rapidly among teenagers. However, are they really exempt from getting sick or developing severe symptoms?
It is accurate that most teens present mild symptoms or are asymptomatic, but we know of cases of teens getting very sick, and sadly some of them end up dying. We have to consider that here in the US, we are facing a serious obesity problem among our youth. These make them prone to many health problems. We also know that health conditions such as kidney disease, asthma, or hypertension put you at risk to develop severe symptoms from C-19, regardless of your age.
The lack of concern about the virus among the young population is alarming as they can easily spread the disease.
It is problematic that teenagers are not concerned about taking preventive measures towards C-19. The risk of them infecting other family members, especially the most fragile is worrying. However, it is not entirely the adolescent’s fault. Teenagers’ brains take longer to fully mature, therefore some can not grasp the consequences of their acts yet.
Social interaction is a real need for teens. How can we help to keep them safe?
It is not a “one size fits all” solution in this case. As a parent of a teenager, and knowing that teens may not follow health protocols, I avoid events with other teens. In my family are high-risk individuals that can develop serious symptoms from C-19.
Here some suggestions on how to keep your teenagers safe:
- Explain to teens how even people that don’t present symptoms can pass along the virus to others. Because you look healthy doesn’t mean you are not carrying the virus.
- Encourage the use of tools like Zoom or FaceTime to chat with their friends.
- If meeting friends is inevitable, limit interactions to a maximum of two friends at a time, and press on the importance of keeping 6 feet apart.
- Emphasizes that face masks are useful in preventing spreading or picking up the virus. For their and other people’s health, they must wear a face mask.
- Point out the great value in keeping good hygiene. Washing or disinfecting hands often. Covering coughs or sneezes at all times. All of these measures are a great help in stopping the spread of the virus.