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What is Social Distancing?

As the global pandemic COVID-19 continues to rapidly spread, many are hearing the term social distancing. But what does social distancing actually mean, and what does it mean for our families and our KSD Community?

Social distancing is staying away from crowds or congregations of 10 or more people with the intent of minimizing transmission of infectious disease outbreaks.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention defines social distancing as “remaining out of congregate settings, avoiding mass gatherings and maintaining distance ­— approximately 6 feet— from others when possible.” Social distancing is recommended because medical professionals know that the virus that causes COVID-19 can travel at least 3 feet when coughed or sneezed and can live on surfaces for hours to days.

One of the most important roles we all play at this time, even during the prolonged school closure, is continuing to practice everyday preventive actions, this includes:

  • Covering coughs and sneezes with a tissue and washing your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • If soap and water are not available, use a hand sanitizer that contains 60% alcohol.
  • Cleaning frequently touched surfaces and objects daily using a regular household detergent and water.

Here are some key social distancing tips from the CDC:

Social distancing – Don’ts

  • Play dates for your children.
  • Meeting small groups for dinner or drinks.
  • Non-essential doctor and medical appointments, including dental and therapies.
  • Hair and nail appointments.
  • Non-essential help around the house (cleaning, cooking). 
  • To better help children understand about social distancing and how germs travel, walk with them around the house and point out fingerprints, which may help them understand that each point of contact is an opportunity for transmission.
  • Encourage family and friends to create a plan for their elderly or older parents/grandparents to stay put for a while if they are accepting and inform them of the risk and concerns of COVID-19.
  • Cancel current travel plans and trips.

 

Social distancing – Do’s

  • Facetime your friends and family often.
  • Keep a daily routine.
  • Participate in activities, but remotely, such as virtual workout classes, book clubs or streaming activity options for your kids.
  • Continue to pay your household staff such as a housekeeper or dog walker even though they will no longer come to your house; this will allow these individuals to stay home and safe with their families and support their own family members who may be at elevated risk.
  • Consider drive-through takeout if your family is low on food.

 

Additionally, it is important to take care of the emotional health of your household members. Outbreaks can be stressful for adults and children. Children respond differently to stressful situations than adults. Talk with your children about the outbreak, try to stay calm, and reassure them that they are safe.