What is hand, foot and mouth disease?

Hand, foot and mouth disease is an illness that creates the sores in the mouth or sometimes on mouth and on the hands and feet. This disease also appears on buttocks and legs. The sores are painful and this illness doesn’t last more than a week.

This hand, foot and mouth disease is common in children but this can also occur in adults but not in many cases, this disease can occur at any time but most common time is summer and fall. This disease is not same as the other diseases that have the same name such as foot and mouth disease and sometime this disease is called as hoof and mouth disease or it is called as mad cow disease. This type of diseases usually occurs in animals.


What causes the hand, foot and mouth disease?

The hand, foot and mouth disease is caused by the virus called an Entero virus.

This virus spreads easily through coughing and sneezing it also spreads through the infected stool, such as when you change s diaper or when the young child gets stool on his or her hands and then touches the other objects and that objects are touched by other children or if they put that in their mouths. Often this disease spreads through with the community. It will take 3 to 6 days to get the symptoms of hand, foot and mouth disease after being exposed to the virus and this is called incubation period.

What are the symptoms?

At the beginning stage your child may feel very tired and get sore throat or your child get fever around 101° F to 103° F and then after two days sores or blisters may start appearing in or on the mouth, on the hands and feet sometimes even on the buttocks. Sometime in some cases the skin rashes may appear before the blisters. Then the blisters may break open and crust over and this sores and blisters go away in week. In some cases the symptoms are very mild and very difficult to recognize.

How is hand-foot-and-mouth disease diagnosed?

A doctor can find out that your child has hand, foot and mouth disease by knowing the symptoms you describe and also by looking the sores and the blisters and tests are not needed to find out.

How is it treated?

Hand, foot and mouth disease usually doesn’t need any treatment. You can use home care medicines to help and relieve your child from the symptoms.

  • Give plenty of cool fluids to your child to help withsore throat. Even flavored ice pops and ice cream also may help.
  • Don’t give acidic or spicy foods and drinks, such as salsa or orange juice. These types of foods can make mouth sores more painful.
  • For pain and fever, giveacetaminophen such as Tylenol or ibuprofen such as Advil. Do not give your child aspirin. It is linked to Reye syndrome, a serious illness.
  • Children are most likely to multiply this disease during the first week of the illness. But virus can stay in the stool for more than a few months and it may spread to others to help prevent the disease from spreading:
  • If your child goes to the day careor school, talk to the staff about the disease when your child can return.
  • Wash your handsoften it is especially very important to wash your hands after you touch a blister or change the diaper of an infected child.
  • Teach all your family members to wash their hands often. It is especially important towash your hands after you change the diaper of an infected child.
  • Don’t let your child share toys or to give kisses while he or she is infected.