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Hand Foot Mouth Disease

What is Hand Foot and Mouth Disease?

Hand, foot and mouth disease is an infectious disease that is especially common in children under the age of 10. It usually spreads in epidemics during the summer and fall months. The main causative agent of Hand, Foot and Mouth disease is the coxsacki virus, a virus from the Enterovirus family. This virus is easily transmitted, especially among children, and determines the course of the disease. Here is more information about Hand Foot and Mouth disease:

How is Hand Foot and Mouth Disease Transmitted?

Hand Foot and Mouth disease is easily transmitted through saliva, coughs, sneezes and feces secreted by a sick person. It can also be transmitted by contact through skin lesions. With the opening of the pool season in the summer months, the likelihood of the virus being present in pool water increases. Mixing the virus into the water through urine and feces and swallowing infected pool water can contribute to the spread of the disease. Therefore, it is important to pay attention to hygiene rules, especially in pools.

What are the symptoms of hand, foot and mouth disease?

Symptoms of Hand, Foot and Mouth disease usually start within the first three days after infection with the virus. Here are the main symptoms of the disease:

High Fever: The first symptom after infection is usually a high fever. This is why parents often take their children to the doctor for a temperature check.

Rashes: One of the most characteristic symptoms of the disease is the formation of water-filled blisters around the hands, feet and mouth. These blisters have a chickenpox-like appearance, but they do not appear on the body, but mainly on the hands, feet and around the mouth. These blisters can be painful, oozing and itchy.

Sore throat and canker sores: Sores in the throat called canker sores can occur in Hand, Foot and Mouth disease. These can cause swallowing problems and loss of appetite.

Tonsil Redness: Redness of the tonsils is also a common symptom.

Other Symptoms: General symptoms such as fatigue, ear and throat pain may also be seen in children with the disease.


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What are the Treatment Methods for Hand-Foot-Mouth Disease?

There is no specific treatment or vaccine for Hand-Foot-Mouth Disease. Treatment is aimed at alleviating the symptoms of the disease. Here are the treatment methods for this disease:

Anti-Itching Lotions: Anti-itch lotions can be used to relieve itching caused by blisters on the hands and feet.

Sore Throat Treatment: Painkiller sprays can be used for sore throat with the advice of a doctor.

Fever Reducers: Doctor-recommended antipyretics can be used to reduce high fever.

Nutrition and Rest: Attention should be paid to the nutrition of the sick child, soft foods should be preferred. Foods that will not worsen the sores in the mouth should be chosen. Plenty of fluid intake should be provided and the child should be rested.

The disease usually resolves spontaneously within a week to ten days. The blisters on the hands and feet dry up and turn into spots over time and then disappear.

What are the things to watch out for with this disease?

The most effective way to prevent the disease is to pay attention to hygiene rules. Therefore, the following important points should be considered:

  • Hands should be washed frequently and dirty hands should not be applied to the face and mouth.
  • Close contact with sick people should be avoided.
  • Sick children should not be sent to school until the lesions have healed.
  • If there are siblings in the household, they should be taught the habit of covering the mouth with a handkerchief when coughing and sneezing.
  • Separate toilets can be used at home as it can be transmitted through urine and feces.

Hand, foot and mouth disease is a common infectious disease among children. To prevent this disease, it is important to follow hygiene rules, limit contact with patients and seek symptom-relieving treatments. Caution should also be exercised when using pools and care should be taken not to swallow infected pool water. It usually resolves spontaneously within a week, but children may need support and care to relax and recover.