Babies and toddlers under the age of 3 years should not wear face coverings, as there is a serious risk of choking and suffocation. Some retailers are selling masks for babies and toddlers, however, Public Health England are very clear that these should not be used because of the significant risks.
Young children under the age of 11 are not required to wear face masks.
Tricia Pease, Associate Chief Nurse Safeguarding, Child Death, Berkshire West, said:
“Whilst the wearing of masks for any child under the age of 11 is not compulsory, we’ve noticed some shops have been selling masks aimed specifically at babies and toddlers. We are very concerned about this and want to alert parents and carers to the dangers around masks and face coverings for these infants.
“The best way to protect young children is to follow the guidelines around frequent hand washing, keeping equipment and surfaces in the home cleaned, wiping down toys and baby changing mats and maintaining the social distancing rules.
“If a child starts to show any symptoms of concern – a high temperature and/or constant cough, parents and carers should go onto NHS 111 online or ring their GP surgery for advice”.