Most children have to take the bus to and from school every day. With the rise in infections in many cities and neighbourhoods keeping them safe while travelling to and from school and while they are at school has become a major concern for parents. How do we keep them safe?

There are a number of things we can do to minimise the risk of getting infected. First of all, tell your children to stay away from other people as best as they can. Obviously that will not always be possible, so it is crucial to always wear a mouth mask or a face mask – for children and teens as well. Put a flask with sanitary gel in their school bags and make sure they understand how important it is to wash their hands as often as possible. If they run out of sanitary gel please make sure they understand to wash their hands using water and soap instead. They should always wash their hands when returning home. And once they are home again after school they best stay at home, as to further minimise the chance they get infected when playing with other children or visiting a store for example.

But that is not all. It is crucial to understand that fever is an early warning signal that a person might be infected with Covid-19. So use your thermometer or – if you do no possess one – buy a thermometer and start checking your children’s temperature. But also your own temperature and the temperature of any other people that live with you in the same house.

The best way to check body temperature is by measuring body temperature twice daily. Why? Because your body temperature rises during the day. The difference between your body temperature in the early morning hours and at the end of the day can be quite significant: up to 0,9 oC. That is perfectly normal. Doctors call this the circadian cycle of humans. It is important to be aware of this circadian cycle because if you check your temperature at – say – 8 AM and your temperature is okay (that means: not a fever), your temperature will rise during the day and may be 0,9 oC higher later in the afternoon. So that might mean that you have developed a fever during the day. The reason for this fever might very well be because you have been infected with Covid-19. So always check twice!

Now what is the best way to check body temperature? Please do not use one of these Chinese made non-contact infrared thermometers (IR guns). They are very inaccurate because it is very hard to aim the IR gun at exactly the right spot on the forehead. Also they are very fragile and break often. In-ear thermometers are not very accurate either. The reason is that you have to push the sensor head of this thermometer into the ear canal of your child or your grandma. Because anatomically we all have a different ear canal it is very hard to position the sensor head in the right way inside their ear. That means there is a big chance you push the thermometer not far enough inside (which often leads to a low and thus inaccurate reading) or you push it in too far which hurts and might even damage their ear drum.

Your best choice for a thermometer is a temporal artery thermometer. When using a temporal artery thermometer all you have to do is gentle swipe the sensor head of the thermometer across the forehead. The sensor will perform a measurement of the blood in the temporal artery on the forehead, which is a perfect spot for a very accurate measurement of the body temperature. What makes it even better is that these thermometers are non-invasive so kids will not be scared of you performing a measurement. You can even measure their body temperature when they are asleep. Because they do no have to be awake for you to be able to perform a perfect measurement of their body temperature.