COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — As kids head back into the classroom over the next few weeks, their risk of contracting COVID-19 — especially for young, unvaccinated kids — will increase.

Per CDC guidelines, if a child is exposed to COVID-19 they will be notified to quarantine, to get tested for COVID-19 themself, and then, to isolate if they receive a positive diagnosis.

Columbus Public Health Commissioner Dr. Mysheika Roberts says she knows quarantining is difficult for younger children but there are ways to mitigate the spread while also being there for your child.

“Those who can, should be wearing a mask around that young person when they have to be with them, and you should limit the number of people who have to be with that person,” Roberts said. “So as best you can, that person should stay in their bedroom or their room as often as they can.”

Addition measures can be taken as well, she said.

“Do the best you can make sure you clean up in the bathroom after the sick person has used the restroom… When you’re dining or you’re eating and you can’t be masked up try to separate individuals so that the people who are eating are in one part of the home or maybe outside if possible, and the people who who haven’t been exposed who weren’t quarantined or in another part of the house where they’re just eating at different times. They just have to be creative and try to do their best to separate the individuals,” Roberts said.

Listed below are the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines for COVID-19 exposure quarantine and isolation.

CDC quarantine guidelines:

  • Stay home for 14 days after your last contact with a person who has COVID-19.
  • Watch for fever (100.4◦F), cough, shortness of breath, or other symptoms of COVID-19.
  • If possible, stay away from people you live with, especially people who are at higher risk for getting very sick from COVID-19.

CDC isolation guidelines:

  • Monitor your symptoms. If you have an emergency warning sign (including trouble breathing), seek emergency medical care immediately.
  • Stay in a separate room from other household members, if possible.
  • Use a separate bathroom, if possible.
  • Avoid contact with other members of the household and pets.
  • Don’t share personal household items, like cups, towels, and utensils.
  • Wear a mask when around other people if able.