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Navigating the Coronavirus as a Parent

Navigating the Coronavirus as a Parent

Keeping yourself and your family safe (and sane) during the coronavirus pandemic

As we get used to changes to our daily routine, it can feel overwhelming. Children, work, having everyone at home – it’s going to be tricky to manage! Thankfully, there are lots of small steps you can take to keep yourself and your little ones safe (and sane), during these uncertain times.

As we learn more about the coronavirus and how it affects us, it is heartening to note that children do not seem to be at higher risk than adults.

We know you’ve heard it a lot lately, but now is the time to practice social distancing and stay a minimum of 2 meters away from anyone outside of the people you live with. Limit leaving the house and practice good hygiene for all the family. Wash your hands for at least 30 seconds, avoid touching your face and take care to cough into your sleeve or elbow if you are feeling unwell. There are lots more helpful tips and guidance on www.gov.uk where advice is constantly being updated, so do make sure you have the latest facts day by day.

And for the Owlet community here in the UK, we’ve prepared some additional words of wisdom to help right now. 

KEEP YOUR LITTLE ONE NOURISHED 

If you’re currently breastfeeding, keep going! There are still a lot of unknowns about coronavirus and how it is spread, but the CDC offers lots of helpful guidance here.

We know breast milk can provide protection against many diseases and during the coronavirus outbreak, parents need to be extra vigilant with hygiene when feeding. Thoroughly wash and sanitise all bottles, nipples and other feeding equipment in hot, soapy water after each use and allow to air dry. Don’t forget to wipe down high-touch surfaces like sinks, counters and the often missed refrigerator door handle!

STAY CALM IF YOU’RE PREGNANT 

Pregnant mums: We know you’re already dealing with the stress of staying healthy, and concerns of the spread of a new virus is the last thing you need. There are still a lot of unknowns, but at this time, current advice is that pregnant women should follow extra vigilant social distancing measures. If you have specific concerns about your risk of contracting coronavirus, contact your healthcare provider. Many practices are doing telephone appointments as a means to stay connected while avoiding unnecessary exposure.

STAY HOME WHEREVER POSSIBLE

The message is pretty clear: stay home. Even if it’s driving you bonkers! Decreasing your social interactions and following the guidelines about social distancing will help stop the spread of the virus. Additionally, staying home helps alleviate the strain on the NHS. 

ENCOURAGE REST AND RECHARGING

Help little ones navigate the changes to their normal routine and encourage regular naps and rest time. Put your mind at ease and use the Owlet Smart Sock during naps and for overnight sleep to track your baby’s oxygen and heart rate. Keep an eye on your little one while they sleep and maybe even get some rest yourself knowing the Smart Sock will notify you if needed.

While we’re all social distancing, take advantage of the increased time at home to establish new traditions with your kids and let your (and their) imaginations flourish. Explore new areas of the house, build an awesome couch fort, or look through old photo albums to keep everyone entertained. Right now, Instagram is rich with ideas for fun activities and ways to keep your little ones engaged.

KEEP HANDS AND SURFACES CLEAN

Remind everyone in your house to practice “good hand hygiene” and wash hands often with soap and water, or use an alcohol-based hand sanitiser (if you can find it!). Make a game of it with the little ones and wash for 20-seconds or more. In the evening, a super-sudsy bubble bath for your baby or toddler is perfect! Take time each day to disinfect high-traffic and high-touch surfaces, like doorknobs, tables, switches, remotes, and bathrooms. And don’t forget the soft items! Launder onesies, swaddles and “lovies” in the warmest possible water a bit more often than you usually do.

RETHINK CHILDCARE ARRANGEMENTS 

Many of us are now working from home and spending more time together as a family! While there is a silver lining to all the togetherness (making memories, witnessing milestones etc.), there will still be times when you’d love an extra set of hands to take care of your little ones.

Because we know the coronavirus greatly impacts the older population, don’t ask older family members or grandparents to watch your kids. Stay connected when over FaceTime instead. You could even send videos back and forth to share highlights of your day! Use your Owlet Cam to include everyone in bedtime routines - all you need to do is share your login credentials for the Owlet app with grandparents or other family members, and they can sign on to sing a bedtime song or help read a story before saying goodnight!

There’s a lot going on right now and while it can feel overwhelming, these little actions will make you feel more empowered. Lean on the amazing technology that makes us feel so connected, search for inspiration on social media and ask questions on your favourite online forum.

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