Coronavirus in children
Children can get coronavirus (COVID-19), but they appear to urge it less often than adults and it’s usually less serious.
Symptoms of coronavirus in children
The main symptoms of coronavirus are:
- A high temperature
- A new, continuous cough – this suggests coughing plenty, for over an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours
- A loss or change to sense of smell or taste – this suggests they can't smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal
What to do if your child has symptoms
If your child has any of the most symptoms of coronavirus:
- Get a test to check if they have coronavirus as soon as possible.
- Stay at your home and do not have visitors until you get the test result – only leave your home to have a test.
- Anyone you reside with, and anyone in your support bubble, must also occupy home until you get the result.
Get full guidance from NHS 111 if you’re worried about your child or not sure what to do.
- For children aged 5 or over – use the NHS 111 online coronavirus service.
- For children under 5 – call 111.
What to try to to if your child seems very unwell
Children and babies will still get illnesses that can make them very unwell quickly. It’s important to urge medical help if you would like it.
Urgent Guidance: Call 111 or your GP surgery if your child:
- Is under 3 months old and features a temperature of 38C or higher, otherwise you think they need a fever
- Is 3 to six months old and features a temperature of 39C or higher, otherwise you think they need a fever
- Has other signs of illness, like a rash, also as a heat (fever)
- Has a high temperature that’s lasted for 5 days or more
- doesn't want to eat, or isn't their usual self and you’re worried
- includes a heat that doesn't come down with paracetamol
- Is dehydrated – as an example, nappies aren't very wet, sunken eyes, and no tears when they’re crying.
Immediate action required: Call 999 if your child:
- Has a stiff neck
- includes a rash that doesn't fade once you press a glass against it (use the “glass test” from Meningitis Now)
- Is bothered by light
- includes a seizure or fit the primary time (they cannot stop shaking)
- Has unusually cold hands and feet
- Has pale, blotchy, blue or grey skin
- includes a weak, high-pitched cry that’s not like their usual cry
- Is drowsy and hard to wake
- Is extremely agitated (does not stop crying) or is confused
- observe it hard to breathe and sucks their stomach in under their ribs
- Has a soft spot on their head that curves outwards
- isn't responding like they sometimes do, or not curious about feeding or usual activities