With unlocking happening in our country, people started to enjoy their lives again. People once they start going out become more and more normal and many a times forget all the precautions they were taking during lockdown. You can see them wearing their masks below the chin, having tea/coffee in groups with their masks down, meeting the friends without masks and social distancing. I see kids playing out in the gardens without social distancing or masks in our housing societies.

People think many of the affected people are asymptomatic. So, what is there to worry. Also, some have a thinking that kids are not going to get affected much. But hold on. Covid 19 is not just another flu. All these months doctors were just concentrating on respiratory and circulatory system to save lives as not much data was available. With the data coming up its really scary. Reports show that, some people hospitalized with COVID-19 were experiencing delirium i.e. they were confused, disorientated and agitated. Many reports are there around the world that some COVID-19 patients had swelling and inflammation in brain tissues. Many people are shown around the world affected by Acute Demyelinating Syndrome (ADS). What is ADS? Myelin is an insulating layer, or sheath that forms around nerves, including those in the brain and spinal cord. It is made up of protein and fatty substances. This myelin sheath allows electrical impulses to transmit quickly and efficiently along the nerve cells. ADS include health conditions that damage myelin, brain signals and affect a variety of neurological functions such as vision, muscle movement, senses, bladder and bowel movement etc., The researchers note that ADS is more common in children.

Also, there are several cases reported to have developed Guillain-Barre syndrome. It is a rare disorder in which your body's immune system attacks your nerves. Weakness and tingling in your extremities are usually the first symptoms. These sensations can quickly spread, eventually paralyzing your whole body. Epilepsy, encephalitis, Kawasaki-like disease, etc are the other health complications that children, who tested Covid-19 positive, are known to suffer from. These conditions may affect the long-term neurodevelopmental outcome of the kids. Interestingly, some patients did not experience any severe respiratory symptoms, making their neurological symptoms the first and major presentation of COVID-19.

Today AIIMS reported the first case of Covid-19-related brain nerve damage in a child. Corona virus induced brain nerve damage in a girl of age 11 years and resulted in loss of vision. AIIMS authorities informed that they are also treating another Covid-19-positive teenager girl after she had complained of fever and encephalopathy (swelling of brain).

All these reports are based on short term studies. We need to study further to understand long term issues as we still don’t know whether the covid 19 virus itself can cross blood brain barrier. If it can cross and stay in our nervous system it can bounce back and affect us anytime in future. There are few studies which showed virus can cause neurological disorders affecting quality of our life. So Covid 19 may cause increased mortality in elders but it may cripple the lives of our children even though the probability needs to be well studied.

So please follow all the guidelines and precautions to protect yourselves and our future generations. Enjoy unlocking and new normal but by following all necessary precautions. Unlocking is to boost our economy. It doesn’t mean everything is back to normal.

The least you could do is wear your masks properly , maintain social distance , maintain personal hygiene, avoid crowded places and protect yourself from Covid-19.