General

What can you do to help children cope with a disaster?

Setting a good example for your children by managing your stress through healthy lifestyle choices, such as eating healthy, exercising regularly, getting plenty of sleep, and avoiding alcohol, is critical for parents and caregivers. When you are prepared, rested, and relaxed you can respond better to unexpected events and can make decisions in the best interest of your family and loved ones.

Are antibiotics effective in preventing and treating COVID-19?

No. Antibiotics do not work against viruses, they only work on bacterial infections. COVID-19 is caused by a virus, so antibiotics do not work. Antibiotics should not be used as a means of prevention or treatment of COVID-19. They should only be used as directed by a physician to treat a bacterial infection.

Are there any medicines/homemade therapies that can prevent or cure COVID-19?

While some traditional or home remedies may provide comfort and alleviate symptoms of COVID-19, there is no evidence that current medicine can prevent or cure the disease. We do not recommend self-medication with any medicines, including antibiotics, as a prevention or cure for COVID-19. However, there are several ongoing clinical trials that include both western and traditional medicines.

Are the symptoms of COVID-19 different in children than adults?

No. The symptoms of COVID-19 are similar in children and adults. However, children with confirmed COVID-19 have generally presented with mild symptoms. Reported symptoms in children include cold-like symptoms, such as fever, runny nose, and cough. Vomiting and diarrhea have also been reported. It’s not known yet whether some children may be at higher risk for severe illness, for example, children with underlying medical conditions and special healthcare needs. There is much more to be learned about how the disease impacts children.

Should children wear masks?

No. If your child is healthy, there is no need for them to wear a facemask. Only people who have symptoms of illness or who are providing care to those who are ill should wear masks.

What steps can my family take to reduce our risk of getting COVID-19?

Practice everyday preventive actions to help reduce your risk of getting sick and remind everyone in your home to do the same. These actions are especially important for older adults and people who have severe chronic medical conditions:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when you are sick, except to get medical care. Practice social distancing at least 2 meters.
  • Cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue and throw the tissue in the trash. Avoid touching your face.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing; going to the bathroom; and before eating or preparing food.
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and objects (e.g., tables, countertops, light switches, doorknobs, and cabinet handles).

What should I do if someone in my house gets sick with COVID-19?

Most important thing in this case is to follow the government guidelines, you can call DHA hotline on 800 342 and ask for guidance. For people who are recovering at home and their caregivers,

  • Stay home when you are sick, except to get medical care.
  • Use a separate room and bathroom for sick household members (if possible).
  • Clean hands regularly by handwashing with soap and water or using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
  • Provide your sick household member with clean disposable facemasks to wear at home, if available, to help prevent spreading COVID-19 to others.
  • Clean the sick room and bathroom, as needed, to avoid unnecessary contact with the sick person.
  • Avoid sharing personal items like utensils, food, and drinks.

Can women with COVID-19 breastfeed?

Yes. Women with COVID-19 can breastfeed if they wish to do so. They should:

  • Practice respiratory hygiene during feeding, wearing a mask where available;
  • Wash hands before and after touching the baby;
  • Routinely clean and disinfect surfaces they have touched.

What is the risk of my child becoming sick with COVID-19?

Based on available evidence, children do not appear to be at higher risk for COVID-19 than adults. While some children and infants have been sick with COVID-19, adults make up most of the known cases to date.

How can I protect my child from COVID-19 infection?

You can encourage your child to help stop the spread of COVID-19 by teaching them to do the same things everyone should do to stay healthy.

  • Clean hands often using soap and water or alcohol-based hand sanitizer
  • Avoid people who are sick (coughing and sneezing)
  • Clean and disinfect high-touch surfaces daily in household common areas (e.g. tables, hard-backed chairs, doorknobs, light switches, remotes, handles, desks, toilets, sinks)
  • Launder items including washable plush toys as appropriate in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions. If possible, launder items using the warmest appropriate water setting for the items and dry items completely. Dirty laundry from an ill person can be washed with other people’s items.

Should I let my child play without a routine or have my child stick to a schedule?

It is important to have a routine in place that can serve as a guide for all members family and reduce anxiety and boredom at home. It is important to add a fixed time for free play, thus allowing the child/children to explore their feelings through play.

I have noticed my child seems anxious lately. What can I do to help?

Give opportunities to play out their feelings using toys, drawings, Lego or more sensory materials like play-dough or clay. Activities that put the body in movement also help to calm down a busy mind.

My child will only play computer games alone. What can I do?

Make time on the schedule for ‘family time’. Choose a fun interactive card or board game and join in with your child, and include all family members.

My child wants his friends to come to his birthday party. How can I tell him he can’t bring friends home at the moment?

Explain to your child that as this is a very special and unique time, he can still invite all his friends to his party virtually using video conferencing applications. Create a challenge on how to make the most unique and best virtual birthday party.

How can I entertain my children at home?

Sit with your child/children and work together to think of fun activities including a home school schedule, cooking sessions, imaginary play, building tents with furniture, making shops out of cardboard boxes, and making up stories and acting them out. Most importantly, have fun with your children.

Mental Health

How can parents explain COVID-19 to their children?


  • Be calm: Make sure that you get the information from reliable sources and check it no more than once a day. Reliable sources include official announcements from the Ministry of Health and Prevention — UAE. This is specifically important in the era of widespread of social media that largely includes inaccurate information and often fake news that is sometimes deliberately engineered to trigger fear and lead to irrational behaviour.
  • Open up about the topic: It is quite likely that your child has already heard about Covid-19 so do not hesitate to discuss this topic. It is better that they get reliable information from you as a parent.
  • Assess what they already know: A good starting point is to ask them about what they already know, and how they got this information. This will give you an opportunity to hear their interpretation and emotional state. When doing so, it is essential that you validate their feelings and minimise their fears.
  • Use age-appropriate language: What you tell your kids, and how you communicate this, varies widely depending on their age. Pre-schoolers need to hear basic reassuring messages. School age children may be able to grasp more information about the outbreak. However, it is essential that you avoid talking about people dying.
  • Monitor screen time: Anxious kids sometimes attempt to reassure themselves by searching, and end up feeling much more anxious due to inaccurate and exaggerated information online. If they are doing so, remind them to check one reliable source, and inform them about the spread of fake news. It might be useful to search reliable sources together. Switch off the TV and do a fun joint activity instead.
  • Give them tools: Teach them how to prevent the spread of the virus. The most effective is proper hand hygiene and you can make this fun by practising together, singing while hand washing, or have them teach their siblings. They will feel empowered.

How can mindfulness help you and your child during COVID-19?

Life can be more challenging during this stressful period. With the ongoing changes people can easily feel overwhelmed. Intense anxiety can have a negative impact on you as well as your child’s daily life. Mindfulness helps us find calmness even when we feel overwhelmed. Focusing on the present moment also helps us feel less depressed and less anxious.

What is mindfulness?

Mindfulness means being attentive to your feelings, thoughts, and sensations at the present moment. Accepting your current experience without judging as either good or bad can help in feeling calmer. By regulating your emotions during stressful circumstances, you can cope and solve problems more efficiently.

How can I be a more mindful parent?

It is not always easy to focus your attention at the present moment. Our attention often wanders into being preoccupied by the past, or worried about the future. Distractions interfere with our ability to give our full attention to what we are doing or to the people who we are with. Our minds often jump from one thing to another, however, with practice we can become more focused and more present with our children.

What strategies can I start practicing?

  1. Listen with your full attention
    • This involves paying attention to what is being said verbally and nonverbally.
    • Your child’s nonverbal language includes facial expressions, tone of voice and posture.
    • Paying full attention is very important in order to understand your child’s emotional state and respond accordingly.
  2. Accept your child’s feelings
    • Try to understand your child’s feelings even the difficult ones like fear or anger.
    • Accept how your child is feeling even if you’re not happy with how they are behaving.
    • Do not judge their feelings, however, allow them to express appropriately and provide support.
  3. Support your child in labeling their thoughts and emotions
    • Explain to your child that it is normal to have emotions.
    • Help your child to verbalize them and pay attention to the associated physical sensations and thoughts.
  4. Take breaks with your child
    • Sit comfortably, pause, take a deep breath and experience how your body feels.
  5. Be kind
    • Encourage your child to be forgiving of their mistakes.
    • Help your child focus on the efforts and learn from the experience.
    • Respond to your child’s behavior with understanding and compassion.

How can I bring mindfulness to everyday life?

  1. Give your full attention to your child
    • Keep devices that may distract you away.
    • Your thoughts may wander, however, gently guide your attention back to the present moment.
  2. Seek moments of connection
    • Read with your child.
    • Make meals together.
    • Engage in common hobbies.
    • Play games.
  3. Be cautious of multitasking
    • Try to focus on one thing at a time.
    • We are generally more productive and less stressed when we pay attention on just one activity. Help your children to do the same.
    • For example, during mealtime, focus on the food and the people around the table, and leave mobile devices in another room.
  4. Limit screen time
    • Decrease time spent in passive activities, e.g. excessive screen time.
    • Engage in active play and exercises with your child.
  5. Pay attention to feelings
    • Help your child notice and label their feelings.
    • Reassure them that it is normal to have emotions.
    • For example, it is okay to feel sad for not being able to meet with friends at present, however, you can utilize new ways of connecting.
  6. Practice mindfulness exercises with your child
    • Breathe deeply and pay attention to the air going in and out.
    • Mindful walking.
    • Mindful coloring.
    • Listen to online guided meditations.

Nutrition

How can we strengthen our immunity with diet during this pandemic?

Good nutrition is essential to a strong immune system. No one food or supplement will help protect against coronavirus but there are ways to keep your immune system functioning optimally such as proper handwashing, maintaining good nutrition, being physically active, meditating and managing stress and getting adequate sleep. One of the best ways to stay healthy is to eat a nutritious diet. Include the following superfoods for a stronger immunity:

  • Carrots, spinach and apricots for Vitamin A
  • Oranges, strawberries and broccoli for Vitamin C
  • Eggs, cheese, fatty fish and mushrooms for Vitamin D
  • Almonds, vegetable oils, peanut butter for Vitamin E
  • Beans, nuts, whole grain products and seafood for zinc
  • Milk, eggs, nuts and meats for protein
  • Probiotics and prebiotics help boost the health of the microbiome, which in turn supports our immune system
  • Water, fruit, soup and more for hydration

How can we prevent obesity during the COVID 'stay home' directive?


  • Get moving. Do house chores, use the indoor stairs or try free workout videos for a sound stay-at-home fitness.
  • Brighten your meal by filling half your plate with fruits and vegetables. Also focus on whole grains, lean proteins and reduced fat dairy products.
  • Have healthy snacks in between to avoid overeating during mealtimes. These include homemade popcorn, unsalted nuts, vegetables sticks with yogurt dips, fruit kebabs, etc.
  • Limit sugar sweetened beverages, fast foods and junk snacks. Adopt healthy cooking methods such as grilling, steaming and baking.

Questions from kids

When will Corona let us go back to school? 
Mila, 4 years old
@jessytrends

Unfortunately we don’t know yet, however everyone is working very hard to stop the spread of the virus so that you and your friends can go back to school again 🙂.

Answered by
Dr. Deena Wafadari
General Paediatrician
Al Jalila Children's

How many weeks does it take to recover from #covid19?

There is a wide range. Some patients don’t have much symptoms from the beginning, while others may take as long as 3 to 6 weeks to feel better.

Answered by
Dr. Deena Wafadari
General Paediatrician
Al Jalila Children's

My toddler is asking if we can stay this way forever? @rhian_adams_athlete

Please reassure your toddler that everyone is working very hard to limit the spread of the virus so that our lives can go back to normal soon

Answered by
Dr. Deena Wafadari
General Paediatrician
Al Jalila Children's

Why did it happen and how can we prevent something like this in the future? @yaseenelkasabi

Covid-19 is believed to have started from a “wet market” in Wuhan which sold both dead and live animals. The best way to prevent rapid spread is strict hygiene standards and social distancing.

Answered by
Dr. Deena Wafadari
General Paediatrician
Al Jalila Children's

Do they think it will come back again?
Aoibhie, 7 years old
@mylittlelovesblog

It is hard to predict that, which is why governments, front line workers, and others around the world are tirelessly working to limit the spread of the virus and to prevent such a peak in the future.

Answered by
Dr. Deena Wafadari
General Paediatrician
Al Jalila Children's

How long will we be in quarantine because I’m really missing all my friends.

Unfortunately we don’t know yet. It must be tough to stay away from your friends, however that is the best way to keep you and your friends safe during this time. Thank you for helping us stop the spread of the virus, and we hope that you are reunited with your friends very soon!

Answered by
Dr. Deena Wafadari
General Paediatrician
Al Jalila Children's

Why does the corona exist?

Covid-19 is believed to have started from a “wet market” in Wuhan which sold both dead and live animals. The best way to prevent rapid spread is strict hygiene standards and social distancing.

Answered by
Dr. Deena Wafadari
General Paediatrician
Al Jalila Children's

Hi, I always wonder, can kids get the corona virus?

Covid-19 can affect children as well, however it is generally known to cause milder symptoms in children. The best way to stop the spread is by staying home and staying safe with your family.

Answered by
Dr. Deena Wafadari
General Paediatrician
Al Jalila Children's

I wonder if I’m still going to go on vacation this summer?

The airports will reopen again once it is safe for you and your family to travel and enjoy your summer vacation. Let us all contribute so that this happens soon, by staying home and staying safe!

Answered by
Dr. Deena Wafadari
General Paediatrician
Al Jalila Children's

My little cousin yara asked, “how do they treat people who have corona?”  @leap.of.hope

 There is no specific treatment or cure for the virus as of the moment. People are treated based on the symptoms or on how the patient is feeling.

Answered by
Dr. Walid Abuhammour
Consultant – Paediatric Infectious Disease
Al Jalila Children's

My 7 years old has two questions: 1. Where does the corona virus come from? 2. When will this end and when can we go out again? @m_for_mama

Coronaviruses are family of viruses that cause animals to be sick and it made a jump to humans. We do not know the exact source of the outbreak. The Covid-19 is thought to come from animals but the animal source has not yet been identified though the original host is  believed to be bats. Frontliners - healthcare workers, police, scientists and everyone is helping each other to help stop this so we can go out again.

Answered by
Dr. Walid Abuhammour
Consultant – Paediatric Infectious Disease
Al Jalila Children's

Why did it happen and how can we prevent something like this in the future? @yaseenelkasabi

It was believed that it started in a wet market in China where hygiene standard is difficult to maintain and so it help the virus to jump from animals to humans. We can prevent this from happening in the future by preparing adaptive, holistic approaches to the detection, prevention, control, cure and to keeping an eye of emerging infectious diseases that covers the complex link among species, ecosystems and human society. This means that we are all responsible for our actions on how to maintain respect and balance between human beings, their environment and the ecosystem. We recommend to stay home, practice personal hygiene, hand hygiene, social distancing and cough etiquette.

Questions from my daughter age 7: ‘are all the kids in the UAE ok’ and ‘if animals gave this to people can people give it back to animals?’ @justtwomums

The frontline workers are doing our best to keep all children and everyone safe. That is why we are requesting everyone to help us by staying home.

Answered by
Dr. Walid Abuhammour
Consultant – Paediatric Infectious Disease
Al Jalila Children's

Who got it first? @dubai_mama

The first human cases of COVID-19 were identified in Wuhan City, China in December 2019. At this stage, it is not possible to determine precisely how humans were infected nor determine the first patient.

Answered by
Dr. Walid Abuhammour
Consultant – Paediatric Infectious Disease
Al Jalila Children's

1. How long can covid-19 virus remain on our hands or body? 2. Can it stay on the hair and for how long? @mira_almuhairi

The COVID-19 virus is mainly transmitted through droplets when an infected person coughs, sneezes, or speaks.  You can be infected by breathing in the virus if you are within 1 metre of a person infected by the virus. This could be by touching a contaminated surface and then touching your eyes, nose or mouth before washing your hands. It is not sure how long the virus could stay on surfaces though studies show that coronaviruses may last on surfaces for a few hours or up to few days and may depend under different conditions like temperature and type of surfaces.

Answered by
Dr. Walid Abuhammour
Consultant – Paediatric Infectious Disease
Al Jalila Children's

Thank you for this initiative : my kids have been worried asking if animals can catch covid-19, especially dogs? @d_onnab08

At this point in time, pets are safe and will not be infected from humans.

Answered by
Dr. Walid Abuhammour
Consultant – Paediatric Infectious Disease
Al Jalila Children's

Does the virus live only inside the human body or does it affect other living beings? @dubai_mum_on_the_run

So far, it’s human to human transmission only.

Answered by
Dr. Walid Abuhammour
Consultant – Paediatric Infectious Disease
Al Jalila Children's

I want to ask you why does the corona have spiky sides? – by Alaa

This is the structure of the virus. This virus has a piece of RNA-this is the genes for how it functions. This is then enclosed in a membrane (the circle part) and sticking out of this membrane are the viral proteins (the spiky sides) which is responsible for how it directly engages and interacts with the cells of our body.

Answered by
Dr. Walid Abuhammour
Consultant – Paediatric Infectious Disease
Al Jalila Children's

Can Covid-19 spread through food from the supermarket?

Potentially yes, through contaminated services.

Answered by
Dr. Walid Abuhammour
Consultant – Paediatric Infectious Disease
Al Jalila Children's

How long does the corona virus last on surfaces?

It is not sure how long the virus can stay on surfaces though studies show that corona virusess may last on surfaces for a few hours or up to few days and may depend under different conditions like temperature and type of surfaces.

Answered by
Dr. Walid Abuhammour
Consultant – Paediatric Infectious Disease
Al Jalila Children's

When can I take my doggie on a walk?

As we are still on a period of studying about the virus, we are still not certain when we can have a walk outside with our pets. At this moment, we urge everyone to stay at home as we combat this virus.

Answered by
Dr. Walid Abuhammour
Consultant – Paediatric Infectious Disease
Al Jalila Children's

Anything we can do as a country to stop the virus from spreading?

Please stay at home and practice hand hygiene to stop the spread of the virus.

Answered by
Dr. Walid Abuhammour
Consultant – Paediatric Infectious Disease
Al Jalila Children's

How can we convince our kids they can't even see their neighbors, cousins and friends? They are getting really bored now. @mumztalk

Always start with validating your loved ones’ feeling: “we know it’s very frustrating to not be able to see your friends. We share the same feelings.” Since COVID-19 is a virus that we cannot see with the naked eye, it can be quite a challenge to explain to children that we are fighting an invisible enemy. The Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress recommends the following for younger children:

  • “If Maria has the germ and coughs on Sebastian, then Sebastian could get the germ. Then, Sebastian could spread the germ to his family and friends by sneezing near them.”
  • “Even though the germ won’t hurt you, it could hurt older people like Grandma and Grandpa.”
  • “The more we stay inside, the safer people like Grandma and Grandpa will be.”
  • “Not everyone has the germ, so don’t be scared. People are working on medicines to kill the germ, but this can take some time.”

Let your child know that even though it is hard for us to not be able to go out or see others as freely as we used to, this is something necessary that we must do in order to limit the spread of the virus and keep everyone in our community as safe as possible. You can also show them alternative ways that they can meet their neighbors and friends virtually, such as using applications like Zoom and other social media platforms. Reassure them that this situation will not last forever, and that as long as we maintain social distancing, we are fighting this virus and weakening it until we can go back to our regular daily routines safely. Balance your response to center around being careful, but not being scared, as things will change, and soon enough, they will be able to go out again.  

Answered by
Dr. Fady Serry
Psychologist
Al Jalila Children's

“I really wish that COVID19 didn’t exist. However, I also do really know that this will come to an end & we will be back at school with our friends again.” From Jana, 10 years old @mrsposetivity

A shift in routine can be difficult for anyone to get used to, for both adults and children alike. Always validate their feelings: “I know this is very hard to not be able to see your friends.” Remind them that you are also not able to see your friends, and that their friends are experiencing the same thoughts and feelings. Explain to your children that by going to school, the virus would spread quickly from person to person (as it is invisible), even though as a young person, they may not get sick. However, the spread puts others at a much greater risk, especially people like grandma and grandpa. It can also be helpful to try to assist your child in connecting with their peers and school teachers virtually, whether it’s through the e-learning system that your child’s school is using or through other media platforms such as Zoom.

Answered by
Dr. Fady Serry
Psychologist
Al Jalila Children's

One of the most common questions my kids ask me is why they can’t go back to school. They miss their teachers and classmates. @mummyofthree_dxb

A shift in routine can be difficult for anyone to get used to, for both adults and children alike. Always validate their feelings: “I know this is very hard to not be able to see your friends.” Remind them that you are also not able to see your friends, and that their friends are experiencing the same thoughts and feelings. Explain to your children that by going to school, the virus would spread quickly from person to person (as it is invisible), even though as a young person, they may not get sick. However, the spread puts others at a much greater risk, especially people like grandma and grandpa. It can also be helpful to try to assist your child in connecting with their peers and school teachers virtually, whether it’s through the e-learning system that your child’s school is using or through other media platforms such as Zoom.

Answered by
Dr. Fady Serry
Psychologist
Al Jalila Children's

How can we explain to kids what social distancing is and why it is important? @drminacharopeme

Always start with validating your loved ones’ feeling: “we know it’s very frustrating to not be able to see your friends. We share the same feelings.” Since COVID-19 is a virus that we cannot see with the naked eye, it can be quite a challenge to explain to children that we are fighting an invisible enemy. The Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress recommends the following for younger children:

  • “If Maria has the germ and coughs on Sebastian, then Sebastian could get the germ. Then, Sebastian could spread the germ to his family and friends by sneezing near them.”
  • “Even though the germ won’t hurt you, it could hurt older people like Grandma and Grandpa.”
  • “The more we stay inside, the safer people like Grandma and Grandpa will be.”
  • “Not everyone has the germ, so don’t be scared. People are working on medicines to kill the germ, but this can take some time.”

Let your child know that even though it is hard for us to not be able to go out or see others as freely as we used to, this is something necessary that we must do in order to limit the spread of the virus and keep everyone in our community as safe as possible. You can also show them alternative ways that they can meet their neighbors and friends virtually, such as using applications like Zoom and other social media platforms. Reassure them that this situation will not last forever, and that as long as we maintain social distancing, we are fighting this virus and weakening it until we can go back to our regular daily routines safely. Balance your response to center around being careful, but not being scared, as things will change, and soon enough, they will be able to go out again.  

Answered by
Dr. Fady Serry
Psychologist
Al Jalila Children's

My daughter asks why she can't go out to the playground. She is 3 years old. I try to explain that it's closed. But next day she asks again. @health_and_beauty_uae

Children are naturally inclined to ask questions and follow their curiosity, especially when a big change happens in the world that has directly affected them. When a child asks repetitive questioning it is most likely not due to any lack of understanding, but due to an increase in their anxiety and distress. We recommend modeling a calm and positive outlook. Remind her that during this time, we have a list of “Safe” activities” and “Not Safe” activities. It may even be helpful to print them out and post them in her room as a fun activity. It can also be very effective to practice some mindfulness techniques and deep breathing exercises together. Belly breathing for children, even as young as 3, can be very helpful as a family exercise. Deep breathing is excellent for coping with anxious thinking and calming the nervous system.

Be mindful as well about how you discuss COVID-19 at home and around your children, as this can increase or decrease your child’s anxiety. Keep reminding them that you are all safe and healthy at home, and that what you are doing is important to maintain that as well as the health and safety of everyone around you. If your child seems anxious, listen to them carefully and allow them to express their concerns with you, so you can respond to them honestly and with reassurance. It is especially important to remind her that this will not last. The “Not Safe” list will change as soon as doctors find a cure for the new virus.

Answered by
Dr. Fady Serry
Psychologist
Al Jalila Children's

How can we as a family cope during this difficult time? Can you please share a routine or timetable? @meenah_31

A daily routine will most likely look different in each household, but every home will be trying to maintain a certain balance between the usual family life at home as we all know it in addition to now working and studying from home. We recommend having a schedule to follow for classes and/or working hours, and it can be even more helpful to have designated work station areas to focus in without being distracted by things like the TV or the presence of other family members. Keeping a routine also helps provide a sense of stability and insight into what the coming day may look like, which can be very reassuring and calming in times of such unpredictability. One particular problem is keeping a good sleep routine because “there is no school.” However, it is very important for children to maintain a bedtime, and it is very helpful for adults as well. Among the most important factors for maintaining a good immunity is obtaining sufficient sleep.

  • Keep a routine for eating times
  • Maintain bedtime routine and time
  • Model good habits – ex. Showering in the morning and/or before bed
  • Continue to limit screen time!

Answered by
Dr. Fady Serry
Psychologist
Al Jalila Children's

Our kids’ wellbeing remains a priority through this situation. What we do after this whole crisis is resolved is as important as what need to do during. What are we doing as a country to be prepared for post covid days? @alissar.nasr

Just as you mentioned in your question, our children’s and loved ones’ wellbeing is the priority. The answer to that may not be rooted in what we as a country need to do, but in what every individual person is responsible to do instead. COVID-19 has proven to us how much influence one person can have over hundreds of others around them, and in much the same way, it is important for us to come together and put health as the number one priority – always. After we are able to surpass this phase with God’s grace, we must have learned from it, and emerge stronger than before and better prepared for any such situation that could happen again. The best thing we can do for our kids is to move forward with courage, to be resilient and to adapt to these difficult conditions with healthy coping mechanisms. If we want to emerge stronger as a country, we must take personal responsibility and create positive memories for our children during their time with us – this will create children who will be ready to take on the next challenge ahead with resilience and grit!

Answered by
Dr. Fady Serry
Psychologist
Al Jalila Children's

Why does covid-19 exist? @emankashlan

Covid 19 is caused by small funny germs called viruses. Viruses are so small and minute that we can’t see them by the light microscope. They need a special type of microscope called Electron Microscope for visualization.  Viruses cause many infections like flu and common cold. The virus that causes COVID 19 is called SARS CoV 2 virus.  Scientists believe that SARS CoV 2 did not exist before December 2019.  It is actually virus from Bats called bat Coronaviruses that changed it genes so that it can enter the human body. 

In addition to COVID 19, viruses from bats are also responsible for causing SARS, MERS, Ebola, Hendra, Nipah. It is believed that these viruses jumped from one bats to humans by an event called “Zoonotic Spillover”.

When bat habitats are disrupted, it stresses the animals and causes them to shed huge quantity of virus in their saliva, urine and faeces that can infect humans either directly or by infecting other animals who in turn can then infect humans. Currently scientists believe that COVID 19 might have spread to an intermediate host called Pangolins, which in turn lead to human infections.

Answered by
Dr. Rubina Lone
Microbiologist and Assistant Director of Laboratory Medicine
Al Jalila Children's

“How long do scientists think this will last for?” 
Cadhla Rose, 11 years old
@mylittlelovesblog

It’s hard for scientists to project the duration of the Covid 19 Pandemic. It is said that 1 infected person can infect 3 more people who in turn can infect 9 people and so on. The only way we can decrease the level of infectivity is if we develop antibodies from a previous infection or through vaccination

This is called “Herd immunity”- a situation when a large percentage of the population becomes immune to a disease and thus the spread of that disease slows down or stops.

However, how soon we develop the herd immunity for Covid 19, either due to natural infection or by developing a vaccine, is still too early to say.

Answered by
Dr. Rubina Lone
Microbiologist and Assistant Director of Laboratory Medicine
Al Jalila Children's

Why is there no cure?
From my 9 year old
@vickiashlindxb 

Viruses including the SARS CoV 2 virus are strange but very intelligent germs. Using few molecules, they have the ability to organize into tiny shapes and travel between people through air, water, food and droplets. There are a number of reasons why it’s difficult to develop an antiviral or vaccine against viruses.

  • Viruses do not have the ability to replicate on their own. They enter our cells and use our cellular machinery to make copies of themselves. SARS CoV 2 virus, like other viruses, also uses human cellular machinery to replicate and make its own proteins. So it’s hard to find drugs that kills the virus but don’t damage our cell as well. We need to develop a drug that’s able to kill the virus without killing the human cell.
  • Viruses are highly adaptive. Because they reproduce so rapidly, they have plenty of chance to mutate (change their genetic information) with each new generation. This can also delay development of drug or vaccine for the virus
  • Having said that, there are a number of drugs that are experimentally being used to see the effect on the Covid 19 virus. In addition, vaccines are being developed and soon we will hear some good news.

Answered by
Dr. Rubina Lone
Microbiologist and Assistant Director of Laboratory Medicine
Al Jalila Children's

When will they able to open the borders cause my dad lives abroad and I won’t be able to see him?

The Government of UAE is taking all measures to protect you and your family, and I assure you that they will open the borders as soon as they make sure that you and your dad will be safe to meet and go back to your normal lives. For now, please help us by staying home and staying safe with your family.

Answered by
Dr. Mohamed Al Awadhi
Chief Operating Officer
Al Jalila Children's

Why do some countries have more cases than others?

There are many reasons for some countries to have more cases than others, but to make it simple, it depends on how many people live in each country, and are these people staying home and staying safe.

Answered by
Dr. Mohamed Al Awadhi
Chief Operating Officer
Al Jalila Children's

I wonder if the corona virus goes to Bangladesh because a lot of my friends are there?

Unfortunately, the virus can go anywhere and all countries. Our advice is, send your friends a word and tell them to stay home with their families and stay safe like you are doing here, this is how we can stop the spread of the virus, and we are sure that you will be able to travel to Bangladesh soon and meet all your friends.

Answered by
Dr. Mohamed Al Awadhi
Chief Operating Officer
Al Jalila Children's

I wonder in Sri Lanka do you they have corona virus?

We are very sorry to say that the corona virus has reached almost all countries in the world, including Sri Lanka, but I am sure that they are taking all precautions there to stop the virus like we are doing here in UAE. So don’t worry and stay safe.

Answered by
Dr. Mohamed Al Awadhi
Chief Operating Officer
Al Jalila Children's

I was wondering if the 24 hour lockdown will be that effective that I can go skating?

Glad to hear you love skating. My children love skating too. The 24 hour lock down is very important to fight the spread of the virus, if we all implement it the virus will go away, and very soon you will be able to skate again, see you in the skating ring 😊.

Answered by
Dr. Mohamed Al Awadhi
Chief Operating Officer
Al Jalila Children's

@ هل الكورونا يصيب الكبار في السن فقط !؟  babyjoory

فيروس كورونا أو كوفيد19 يصيب الأشخاص من كل الأعمار كباراً وصغاراً

Answered by
Dr. Deena Wafadari
General Paediatrician
Al Jalila Children's

بنتي عندها أسئلة كثيرة منها هل في أطفال مصابين بالكورونا في الامارات؟ و شنو بيصير لو طفل لاسمح الله طلع تحليله إيجابي؟dubai_arab_ladies_group

فيروس كورونا أو كوفيد19 يصيب الأطفال أيضاً، ولكن بشكل عام تبقى إصابة الأطفال محدودة وبأعراض خفيفة

Answered by
Dr. Deena Wafadari
General Paediatrician
Al Jalila Children's

هل هناك شريحه من المجتمع يستهدفها فيروس كوفيد-١٩ أكثر عن غيرها من الشرائح؟ (راشد ولدي يوجه لكن هالسؤال😊) mira_almuhairi@

COVID-19 can affect everyone but it will be more severe in elderly and patients who have other chronic diseases like diabetes, heart and kidney problem, immunocompromised and those pregnant. فيروس كوفيد19 قد يصيب كافة شرائح المجتمع، ولكن تأثيره يكون أكبر على الفئات العمرية الأكبر أو المرضى بأمراض مزمنة أخرى مثل السكري وأمراض القلب والكلى وأمراض نقص المناعة بالإضافة إلى الحوامل.

Answered by
Dr. Walid Abuhammour
Consultant – Paediatric Infectious Disease
Al Jalila Children's

امتا كورونا فيروس بيخلص ؟

فيروس كورونا بيخلص عن قريب انشالله، بجهود حكومة الإمارات وبجهود العائلات والأطفال من خلال بقائهم في البيت واتباع كل نصائح السلامة وانشالله سنمنع انتشار العدوى وتعود الحياة إلى طبيعتها

Answered by
Dr. Walid Abuhammour
Consultant – Paediatric Infectious Disease
Al Jalila Children's

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