There are different types of disease presentation, based on the age of the person who is infected by SARS-CoV-2 virus, the virus which causes COVID-19. Luckily children and adolescents tend to have more mild disease, as compared to adults, informs Dr Maria Van Kerkhove, Technical Lead, COVID-19, World Health Organization, on its recent IGTV
Most people who are infected with SARS-CoV-2 virus have respiratory symptoms. They start to feel unwell. They get fever, cough or a sore throat or a sneeze. Some individuals may have gastrointestinal symptoms. Others may lose sense of smell or taste.
“Symptoms tend to be milder in younger children. They don’t have as many symptoms as adults do. Some children may have gastrointestinal symptoms like diarrhoea or vomiting, but tend to be more mild,” Dr Kerkhove asserts.
Most children tend to have asymptomatic infection, which means they don’t have any symptoms at all, she adds.
Dr. Kerkhove said that in terms of transmission, the virus variant that was identified in the United Kingdom, there was an increase in transmissibility across all age groups, including younger children. “In the areas where this virus variant was circulating, schools were open. The virus circulated amongst students and faculties. Studies are still underway with these virus variants. The studies in the UK do not indicate that the virus specifically targets young children.”
This means that the variants of the virus are not infecting children more than it would be likely of other viruses that are circulating in the area.