Coronavirus risks may seem low to some, but for the immunocompromised, they’re higher than ever

Why staying home during the coronavirus pandemic needs to be taken seriously.

Coronavirus risks may seem low to some, but for the immunocompromised, they’re higher than ever

The saying goes that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. As the coronavirus continues to spread across the globe, it's worth noting that while there's no cure or vaccine, there is a simple, effective form of prevention: stay home when you're sick, or if you've been told you might be.

The CDC wants people to stay home when they are sick and self-isolate to prevent the spread of the virus, but because reports suggest that most cases of COVID-19 are mild for the majority of healthy people this seems extreme to some people. But to families with immunocompromised or medically fragile children (my own included), or with elderly parents or grandparents, they're not extreme at all.


These vulnerable populations are depending on everyone else to take the coronavirus threat seriously. An otherwise healthy person who contracts coronavirus may recover just fine—but someone they inadvertently infect along the way may not be so lucky.

Parents and loved ones of those facing an elevated risk are pushing back against the idea that the virus is no big deal, and health officials are attempting to make the messaging clearer because one individual not abiding by self-quarantine recommendations can have a ripple effect on a community.

Recently a Missouri dad who says he didn't understand that he was supposed to self-quarantine went to a school dance with one of his daughters while another daughter was awaiting her coronavirus test results. When the test came back positive this father left the dance—but two schools had to be closed, according to the Washington Post and now many families' lives are disrupted. The CDC says it's still learning how the virus spreads, and it's possible that even those without active symptoms could pass it on to others—meaning that the father could have infected dozens of others, who in turn could have infected dozens of others as well.

As the number of coronavirus cases increases in the U.S., a growing number of them have been "community spread"—meaning the person who contracted the virus hadn't traveled or knowingly been in contact with another infected person. In light of those cases, there have been more calls to practice social distancing—described by The Atlantic as staying away from public places, avoiding big gatherings, and avoiding non-essential travel.

You've probably seen plenty of people questioning why the coronavirus has incited such fear, or saying that it's no more a threat the flu. But the facts don't seem to back that up. The Director-General of the World Health Organization says coronavirus causes a more severe course of illness than the flu, and there's no natural immunity to it since the COVID-19 strain is so new. But he says there is one key difference between the two: "We don't even talk about containment for seasonal flu–it's just not possible. But it is possible for COVID-19."

The flu isn't containable, but the CDC does ask (every year) for people to stay home when they have influenza. But people don't (for many unfortunate reasons) and sick kids get sicker. Moms with compromised immune systems end up hospitalized and miss time with their families. Grandparents that families rely on for childcare can't provide it, because they caught the flu from someone who couldn't or wouldn't stay home, and now they're hospitalized. Maybe COVID-19 will change how seriously we consider the risk to others that we take when we go out with a virus. Parents on social media are hoping it does.

Containing coronavirus—and by extension, protecting the immunocompromised, the elderly, and disabled—will take sacrifice. Missing a school dance, canceling a vacation, or rescheduling a big gathering can be incredibly disappointing—but when the upside is saving lives—it should be an easy call.

By its very nature, motherhood requires some lifestyle adjustments: Instead of staying up late with friends, you get up early for snuggles with your baby. Instead of spontaneous date nights with your honey, you take afternoon family strolls with your little love. Instead of running out of the house with just your keys and phone, you only leave with a fully loaded diaper bag.

For breastfeeding or pumping mamas, there is an additional layer of consideration around when, how and how much your baby will eat. Thankfully, when it comes to effective solutions for nursing or bottle-feeding your baby, Dr. Brown's puts the considerations of mamas and their babies first with products that help with every step of the process—from comfortably adjusting to nursing your newborn to introducing a bottle to efficiently pumping.

With countless hours spent breastfeeding, pumping and bottle-feeding, the editors at Motherly know the secret to success is having dependable supplies that can help you feed your baby in a way that matches lifestyle.

Here are 9 breastfeeding and pumping products to help you no matter what the day holds.

Customflow™ Double Electric Breast Pump

Dr. Brown's electric pump

For efficient, productive pumping sessions, a double electric breast pump will help you get the job done as quickly as possible. Quiet for nighttime pumping sessions and compact for bringing along to work, this double pump puts you in control with fully adjustable settings.


Hands-Free Pumping Bra

Dr. Brown''s hands free pumping bra

Especially in the early days, feeding your baby can feel like a pretty consuming task. A hands-free pumping bra will help you reclaim some of your precious time while pumping—and all mamas will know just how valuable more time can be!


Manual Breast Pump with SoftShape™ Silicone Shield

Dr. Brown's manual breast pump

If you live a life that sometimes takes you away from electrical outlets (that's most of us!), then you'll absolutely want a manual breast pump in your arsenal. With two pumping modes to promote efficient milk expression and a comfort-fitted shield, a manual pump is simply the most convenient pump to take along and use. Although it may not get as much glory as an electric pump, we really appreciate how quick and easy this manual pump is to use—and how liberating it is not to stress about finding a power supply.


Nipple Shields and Sterilization Case

Dr. Brown's nipple shields

There is a bit of a learning curve to breastfeeding—for both mamas and babies. Thankfully, even if there are some physical challenges (like inverted nipples or a baby's tongue tie) or nursing doesn't click right away, silicone nipple shields can be a huge help. With a convenient carry case that can be sterilized in the microwave, you don't have to worry about germs or bacteria either. 🙌


Silicone One-Piece Breast Pump

Dr. Brown's silicone pump

When you are feeding your baby on one breast, the other can still experience milk letdown—which means it's a golden opportunity to save some additional milk. With a silent, hands-free silicone pump, you can easily collect milk while nursing.


Breast to Bottle Pump & Store Feeding Set

After a lifetime of nursing from the breast, introducing a bottle can be a bit of a strange experience for babies. Dr. Brown's Options+™ and slow flow bottle nipples were designed with this in mind to make the introduction to bottles smooth and pleasant for parents and babies. As a set that seamlessly works together from pumping to storing milk to bottle feeding, you don't have to stress about having everything you need to keep your baby fed and happy either.


Washable Breast Pads

washable breast pads

Mamas' bodies are amazingly made to help breast milk flow when it's in demand—but occasionally also at other times. Especially as your supply is establishing or your breasts are fuller as the length between feeding sessions increase, it's helpful to use washable nursing pads to prevent breast milk from leaking through your bra.


Breast Milk Storage Bags

Dr. Brown's milk storage bags

The essential for mamas who do any pumping, breast milk storage bags allow you to easily and safely seal expressed milk in the refrigerator or freezer. Dr. Brown's™ Breast Milk Storage Bags take it even further with extra thick walls that block out scents from other food items and feature an ultra secure lock to prevent leaking.


Watch one mama's review of the new Dr. Brown's breastfeeding line here:

This article was sponsored by Dr. Brown's. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Motherly and mamas.

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