How Risky Is Having A Sleepover Right Now?

In our series "What's the Risk?" experts weigh in on what risks different scenarios pose for transmitting COVID-19.

How Risky Is Having A Sleepover Right Now?

When it comes to getting sick with COVID-19, you might be thinking about this, and we have too. Here’s a question we’ve got: 

"My 16-year-old granddaughter lives with us. Her friend lives down the street. What is the risk of my granddaughter and her friend having a stay over?"

We asked the experts: Dr. Mark Esper, a pediatric infectious disease specialist at The Cleveland Clinic; Katie Cary, vice president of infection prevention for HCA Continental Division; and Dr. Nipunie Rajapakse, a pediatric infectious diseases physician at the Mayo Clinic.

Their take: Contracting COVID-19 from having a sleepover is medium-risk.

"Right now, I would not recommend it. I would say that's a higher risk than you probably would want. Everybody that you invite into the house is a person that could be someone who is potentially infectious. They may be sick or they may not be sick, and they can still have this virus to spread this virus. One of the insidious things about this virus is that it can sneak under the radar," Esper said.

"The risk right now very, quite significantly, depending on where you live. There definitely are rural areas that have had large numbers of cases of COVID. Obviously, we've seen some large outbreaks in some other urban areas and metropolitan areas in the country. I would be very cautious in a situation like this and recommend against it unless you're very sure that they have been physically distancing themselves. " Rajapakse said.

"As long as you could rule out, you know, that there had not been any known contacts with anybody that have been ill, then I would say that the risk would be lower. But certainly letting somebody into your house that is not normally with you during a time of, you know, self-isolation, it will increase risk," Cary said.

If you have a question about your risk, send us a video to whatstherisk@newsy.com. You can see answers to other questions here