Using a mask is ‘strongly recommended’, says Anna Escobar – 10/06/2022 – Equilíbrio e Saúde

It is not only Covid-19 that worries parents, but also other respiratory diseases. According to pediatrician Anna Escobar, cases among children under the age of five have increased significantly, especially in the 0-2 age group.

In an interview given during the Brain Congress 2022 in Gramado (RS) earlier this month, the doctor also warned about the importance of wearing a mask, washing your hands and practicing social distance from the age of two.

Regarding the mask, he emphasized the importance of using the item. “The epidemic is not over and we are under new forms and subversives. [haverá] Others in lesser cases. When it is reduced, you can relax the use of the mask. Now it is strongly recommended to use masks in closed environments, including schools. “

Which respiratory diseases affect children the most at this time? All respiratory diseases are on the rise, especially in young children, under 5 years and especially between 0 and 2 years.

By 2022, children under the age of two have not been exposed to anything, so their immune systems have not been bombarded. What’s happening now? Everyone without a mask, they started going to school and their immune system was affected.

In addition to respiratory syncytials, there are different types of viruses such as rhinovirus, metapneumovirus, etc. that cause bronchiolitis.

At the same time, at this time, April, May and June, we have dry air and many more polluted cities like Sao Paulo. It increases the amount of environmental allergens, which trigger asthma.

Some doctors talk about environmental asthma. It’s the same thing. Asthma is a process of bronchospasm, when the bronchi close. What makes the Bronx stop? First, you must have a genetic predisposition; Second, an environment that triggers allergens.

These children with asthma need to use corticosteroids and inhalers. Are they harmful? Is it the only treatment for asthma? There are treatments for acute and chronic crises. Chronic is done with a bronchodilator and corticosteroid low inhaled dose, which has no systemic effect in children. The big problem is when you treat acutely with high-dose corticosteroids. Then it can have a systemic effect. Corticosteroids cannot be given for a long time because they block the hormonal axis.

Is Asthma Preventable? Yes, to the extent that we can reduce the triggers that lead to an acute crisis. For example, people who live in rural areas, eat well and sleep well, have no stress and live a healthy life are less likely to have seizures than people who live in the city, breathe dust and sleep poorly.

Is Covid-19 dangerous for children with asthma? Children with asthma have a higher risk of contracting an infectious respiratory disease because the lungs are compromised.

How to protect children from covid? According to the Brazilian Society of Pediatrics, children over the age of two must wear masks, maintain social distance and wash their hands.

The S সাo Paulo government has recommended that masks be discontinued. In your opinion, should it be an obligation or a recommendation? The epidemic is not over and we are the subject of new forms and variants. There will be times with more and [haverá] Others in lesser cases. When it is reduced, you can relax the use of the mask. Now it is strongly recommended to use masks in closed environments including schools.

Recommended or mandatory? In Brazil, it would be appropriate to use the strongly suggested expression, but for the Brazilian spirit it would mean “I will not use”. “Thank you” is not the best word, but it can be the most effective.

So, is it a must? That’s it.

In 2020, we heard that covid is not dangerous in children and they will rarely get the disease. Has the virus changed? We are beginning to understand the workings of the virus. In order for it to enter the cell, it needs a receptor. With the help of a small amount of receptors, children began to have mild cases of covid, because a small amount of the virus was able to enter the cell. The virus has the key and we have the cell lock. Only variant appeared. And what are their characteristics? The key has gotten better. Children tend to be infected.

At the same time, we understand that covid can lead to multicast inflammatory syndrome in children. It’s important. However, it affects only 0.6% of children. You may think this is a small amount, but if it is your child, then it is 100% for you. Want to see your child intubated? So, let’s start preventing covid in children. Another reason: children may also have long covids.

Do children have the same vaccine resistance as adults? It’s more or less the same thing. Immunity induced by the disease or vaccine lasts about four months – probably less than the disease.

Can children get covid vaccine with others? They could. We only interval between covid doses.

What to do when parents do not want their children to be vaccinated against covid without clinical justification. For example, should the problem be solved with fines and imprisonment? It depends on the case. I think the decision based on the clinical case depends on the judge. From a medical point of view, every child has the right to be vaccinated. It is in the ECA and we must respect it.

Do you think it is safe to go to school at this time? Face-to-face schooling is essential for children’s development. The online scheme served as the moment we learned about the epidemic, realizing the risk of disease. Children can and should go to school. Second, there will be worse and better times for the epidemic. In the worst case scenario, we must be responsible enough to send children over the age of two to school wearing masks. Third, everyone’s responsibility is huge. Is your child sick? Do you have any flu symptoms? Do not send to school. On the third day, check and if it is positive, adhere to the quarantine for at least seven days.

* Reporter Brain traveled at the invitation of Congress 2022


Anna Maria de Ulhoa Escobar

Pediatrician, full professor and coordinator of the Department of Preventive and Social Pediatrics at the USP School of Medicine’s Department of Pediatrics, as well as Ambassador of the Jô Clamente Institute (Ex-App) in Sওo Paulo


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