Parents know how easy it is for their kids to get sick, especially when an illness is spreading through a school or a daycare. A cough, a cold, the flu… this time of year, many kids are sure to get sick. The scary thing is, there is an illness spreading that is a lot worse then a cold. Doctors are urging parents to learn about hand, foot and mouth disease in order to recognize the symptoms.
WHAT IS HAND, FOOT AND MOUTH DISEASE ?
Hand, foot and mouth illness is a viral health problem that almost all commonly affects infants and kids younger than 5 years old. It also can occur in adults. The illness affects about 200,000 Americans each year. It always starts with a fever, reduced appetite and a sore throat. A day or 2 after the fever starts, painful sores will begin to develop within the mouth. they begin in the back of the mouth as little, red spots. The spots then begin to blister and may turn into ulcers. A skin rash additionally develops with red spots and blisters, sometimes on the palms of the hands and soles of the feet. it may also spread to the knees, elbows, buttocks or genital area.
Hand, foot and mouth disease will lead to dehydration once water is too painful to swallow because of the mouth sores. The disease is extremely contagious. It will spread simply from contact with mucus or saliva, which is why it’s so common in schools. It may be spread through a sneeze, a kiss or even a shake.
Experts at the West Central Health District in Georgia are warning folks that we might be looking at a record-breaking year for the disease. It’s already causing outbreaks among both kids and college students. A large outbreak has been making its way through Georgia, and it should affect the south eastern states. Florida State University experienced an outbreak in September, as did at least four schools across New Jersey.
COMMON SYMPTOMS OF HAND, FOOT AND MOUTH DISEASE TO WATCH OUT FOR!
- A red rash with blistering on the palms and soles
- Loss of appetite
- Painful, red, blister-like lesions on the tongue, gums and inside of the cheeks
- Sore throat
- Irritability in infants and toddlers
FOOT, HAND, AND MOUTH DISEASE PREVENTION
You can lower your risk of catching hand, foot and mouth disease by being extremely vigilant with your hygiene and your kids hygiene.
- Wash your hands often, particularly after changing diapers or going to the bathroom.
- Clean and disinfect surfaces that are frequently touched.
- Clean and disinfect children’s toys regularly.
- If you suspect hand, foot and mouth disease, be sure to keep your kids home from school until they have been cleared by a doctor. There is no specific treatment for the illness, but rest and plenty of fluids are usually recommended.
WATCH THE VIDEO BELOW FOR MORE INFORMATION ON HOW TO SPOT THE ILLNESS!