Due to the recent pandemic, the world as we know it has changed drastically. Governments around the world have implemented mandated national self-isolation for non-essential workers. The World Health Organization (WHO) has strongly encouraged people to comply with physical distancing and stay indoors for the time being.

Although a wide range of age groups have been affected by the spread of COVID-19, it has been determined by health officials that people with underlying health conditions and the elderly are more susceptible to the virus. Everyone wants to make sure that they’re loved ones are safe and well, especially during this time of chaos.

This begs the question: Is it safe to visit your grandparents during the COVID-19 pandemic? The short answer is no. It is not safe to visit your grandparents in person at this time. While you may be worried about your isolated elderly relatives, it’s imperative that we all practice measures to ensure elder safety during COVID-19.

If Your Grandparents Live Separately From You

It’s likely—and completely understandable—that you may be worried about your grandparents’ health and safety during the pandemic. Your first instinct may be to rush right over to go check on them, but that may not be the best idea. Visitations to most nursing homes have been restricted for the protection and well-being of their residents.

As mentioned, older adults run a higher risk of becoming infected with COVID-19due to the fact that a number of them may have a chronic condition which makes them more susceptible. Additionally, the immune system changes as people age, so it may most likely be related to that factor as well. With regard to young children in particular, if they contracted the virus, they tend to have experienced a milder case of it and can often be asymptomatic.

This is another reason why it would be better for children to see their grandparents by virtual means in the meantime. While pharmaceutical companies are still working on finding a cure and vaccine, it would be advisable to check up on your grandparents through phone and video calls. For now, it is the safest and most practical way to stay in touch with them while practicing physical distancing.

An elderly couple speaking to their family virtually

If You’re Living in a Multi-Generational Household 

Direct contact with your grandparents is clearly unavoidable if you’re living in a multi-generational household, which can make them more vulnerable to coming into contact with the virus. In situations like this and whether or not there is a senior citizen in your home, it is essential that you continue to adhere to the rules of hygiene. Wash your hands properly and on a regular basis and avoid touching your face. 

It may sound simple, but if you stay indoors and frequently disinfect your hands and household, you are significantly minimizing the risk of contracting and transmitting the virus.

A multi-generational household sitting on a couch together

Elder Safety During COVID-19 

There are many ways to keep your loved ones safe during this time. Stay updated on the news, comply with government safety measures, practice additional hygiene habits, and keep in touch with loved ones through virtual means. This way we can all come together in solidarity to flatten the curve of the pandemic and ensure your grandparents will remain safe and healthy during COVID-19.