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Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease

hand foot mouth disease

Hand foot mouth disease - learn more about this illness.

Remember how I escaped to Blissdom for a few days away and I left the husband ALONE with all 4 kids? Well mom leaves town and the 2 younger kids got sick, with foot hand and mouth disease.

Hand, foot and mouth disease – doesn’t that sound like some type of epidemic you would hear on the news? As terrible and nasty as it sounds, it’s not fun but thankfully short-lived and non-deadly.

Here is what you should know about hand, foot and mouth disease: (HFMD):

What is Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease?

Hand, foot, and mouth disease (HFMD) is a viral illness that affects mainly infants and children. Symptoms include fever, skin rash, and red spots or sores in the mouth.

How is Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease Spread?

HFMD is commonly spread by contact with an infected person’s stool, nose and throat discharge, blister fluid, or saliva. Virus is often passed when an infected person’s unwashed hands touch someone else or contaminate a surface. The viruses that cause HFMD can survive for long periods on environmental surfaces.  A person with HFMD is most contagious during the first week of illness, but may continue to be contagious for several weeks after their symptoms are gone.

Neither of our kids are currently in daycare. Come to find out, there was an outbreak in the church nursery. We try to go to church and we get infected… I kid people. It could happen anywhere!

What Does Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease Look Like?

Here are a few photos of Zeke. He has such a sweet temperament, even when dealing with this ailment!


  • Sore around the mouth 1 of 5
    Sore around the mouth
    We noticed a few sores around Zeke's mouth, 2 days into him being sick.
  • Little digits with sores 2 of 5
    Little digits with sores
    Zeke is a finger sucker, but these are an obvious sign of HFMD.
  • Leg ulceration 3 of 5
    Leg ulceration
    This was our first hint at more than just a cold and fever. This ulceration is a week old and is still not completely healed.
  • Skin rash 4 of 5
    Skin rash
    Zeke's little cheeks became red and slightly rashed. This lasted 3 days.
  • More fingers with sores 5 of 5
    More fingers with sores
    Zeke's other hand was covered in sores as well. Poor thing looks terrible!

Who Can Catch Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease?

HFMD is common in infants and children under age 10, but can also affect older children, teenagers and adults. A person can be infected if they are exposed to a type of enterovirus that they’ve never been exposed to before. However, some people who are infected do not get sick.

A few years ago foot and mouth disease (or hoof and mouth disease) was in the news, this is NOT the same as hand, foot and mouth disease!  I remember a grandparent freaking out when we told them about one of our kid’s having HFMD, and them thinking they had foot and mouth disease!

How to Treat Hand, Foot & Mouth Disease:

There is no specific treatment.  Almost all children with HFMD recover on their own.  People with HFMD should rest and drink liquids to prevent dehydration. A health care provider may also recommend medications to control fever and pain.  Sores in the mouth can make swallowing painful and difficult, and some children may refuse to drink fluids for this reason. If reluctance to drink causes serious dehydration, treatment with intravenous fluids may be needed.

Lots of love, tylenol and warm baths were given this past week.

For more information download this Hand, foot and mouth information sheet from state of California’s Health and Human Services.  The information above was obtained through this resource.

Both our baby and toddler first came down with fevers, vomiting, fatigue, ear pain and diarrhea. Not fun, when my husband is alone having to deal with this and I am trying to give advice, love and attention via Facetime!

After I returned home (I was gone for a total of 59 hours), both babies started breaking out with weird ulcers. We had first thought it was a boil on Zeke’s leg, but soon he had random spots all over his body. His little hands had sores. The area around our toddler’s mouth broke out in a weird rash. We had experienced this before with our first set and knew right away what was going on.

We had a crazy week juggling the 2 sick kids. Then I got sick, then another child got sick. UGH! I think we are all *knock on wood* well now.

Has Your Baby Had Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Molly blogs about technologymom style and iPhone tips and tricks at Digital Mom Blog.
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