Your child’s classroom is where they learn, play and grow – while the school is meant to be a safe haven, it can oftentimes be a breeding ground for germs. As parents, we know all too well that children are especially prone to getting sick with all sorts of nasty respiratory infections – and these bugs can be pretty contagious and spread quickly. But how do you know if the symptoms are just a case of the common cold, or is it something else entirely? Besides COVID-19, young children can be exposed to a multitude of harmful bacteria and viruses that can cause them to become ill.
Ahead, read on to learn more about the most common viral respiratory diseases and how they are transmitted, as well as some useful tips on what you can do to protect your child and others from getting infected.
What is a respiratory infection?
A respiratory infection affects airways in the lungs and other parts of the respiratory system that are responsible for breathing. It can be divided into two types: (1) upper respiratory infections, which affect the upper part of your respiratory tract such as your sinuses and throat, and (2) lower respiratory infections, which tend to be more serious conditions that occur when there are infections in the lower airways and lungs.
Types of upper respiratory infections:
- Common cold
- Flu (influenza)
- Sinusitis (sinus infection)
Types of lower respiratory infections:
- Chest infection
Most common respiratory diseases are caused by viruses and are highly contagious, although the symptoms can be generally mild and self-limiting.
How do respiratory infections spread?
Understanding how respiratory diseases spread allows you to take precautionary measures to reduce your chances of contracting them. These viruses usually spread through airborne transmission when an infected individual talks, coughs or sneezes into the air. When exhaled, these small respiratory droplets contain infectious agents that may be inhaled by those nearby. It can also spread directly through close/person-to-person contact with someone who is sick, or by coming into indirect contact with contaminated surfaces such as door handles, electronic devices and toys.
Respiratory infections are incredibly common and can develop at any point in your life. However, it’s important to note that certain groups of people are more likely to be at risk, particularly young children and the elderly. Individuals with weakened immune systems or existing illnesses may also be susceptible to getting more severe infections.
What are the common symptoms to look out for?
Catching the symptoms early can help you to learn how to manage the condition before it gets worse. The good news is, most respiratory infections typically last for a few weeks and tend to go away on their own without much treatment. Some of the common symptoms include:
- Runny nose
- Sore throat
- Body aches
Tips to prevent respiratory infections
Take steps to protect yourself and others around you by following these easy prevention tips. Here’s what you need to do to keep your child safe and healthy.
- Practise good hygiene by washing hands often with soap and water, especially before eating, after using the bathroom or when handling toys.
- If you’re sick, wear a mask to help prevent the virus from spreading to others.
- Disinfect common high-touch surfaces regularly using the BioCair Pocket Sprays.
- Disinfect the air indoors to reduce the amount of airborne bacteria and viruses.
To reduce the risk of transmission within the household, make sure to disinfect the air indoors to keep germ levels at a minimum. Capable of eliminating airborne bacteria and viruses, the BioCair Dry-Mist Disinfection Machines convert the Air Purifying Solution into a form of dry-mist that is lightweight enough to be suspended in the air, killing up to 99.999% of the bacteria and germs in the air. We recommend using the machine for at least an hour per day on a daily basis for optimal prevention, keeping you and your child healthy and safe from respiratory viruses.