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  Shelby Leith   May 16, 2017   Illness, Disease 0 Comments

Hand, foot and mouth disease

With the rising incidence of this disease in Louisiana and Arkansas, Velocity Care gives you the information you need to keep your family healthy.

Hand, foot and mouth disease is spreading throughout Louisiana and Arkansas.

What is hand, foot and mouth disease?

Hand, foot and mouth disease (HFMD) was once extremely rare in North America, with most cases occurring in Asia and Africa. A strain of this disease, however, has become quite common in the United States, with recent outbreaks occurring in the South. HFMD is contagious and usually affects children under the age of 5. A group of viruses from the enterovirus family causes HFMD, and it’s easily spread from person to person. You can transmit it by sneezing, coughing or through infected feces. It usually takes up to a week for the symptoms to appear after exposure to the virus, and they will last for about a week. Although uncomfortable, this illness is not serious and complications are unlikely.

What are the symptoms of this disease?

The most common symptoms for hand, foot and mouth disease are the following:

  • Lethargy, malaise and exhaustion for the initial three to six days.
  • Fever.
  • Loss of appetite.
  • Sore throat.
  • Skin rash.
  • Painful sores or blisters that form on the hands, feet, legs, inside or around the mouth area or in the buttocks.

What are my treatment options?

Currently there is no vaccine available for this condition, and because it’s a virus, there is no cure. HFMD will clear up on its own after a week. Your urgent care doctor should be able to diagnose this condition based on the symptoms present and will usually recommend acetaminophen or ibuprofen to help keep the fever down. Your doctor may also prescribe a topical preparation to help with the discomfort caused by the blisters. It’s important to give your child a bland, easily swallowed diet if sores are present in the mouth. Any acidic or spicy foods can make eating painful. Cool fluids and popsicles help soothe the mouth and throat and will keep your child from becoming dehydrated.

It’s important to follow good hygiene practices and wash your hands often, especially after going to the washroom or changing a diaper to ensure you don’t spread the virus to others. Your child should also stay home from school or daycare until your doctor has said it’s safe to return.

If you or a loved one is feeling unwell, Velocity Care Urgent Treatment Center is here to care for you. We offer a wide variety of services for all your health care needs and will have you feeling back to your old self in no time. Our walk-in clinics in the Little Rock, Shreveport and Natchitoches areas offer fast, efficient service with little to no wait time. We know how important the health of your family is to you and we take pride in providing the highest standard of care.

Medicine that should be in your medicine cabinet

Photo credit: 123RF Stock Photo

Medical disclaimer

This site offers medical, health, fitness and nutritional information and is designed for educational purposes only. General information found on this website is not intended to diagnose any medical condition or to replace your health care professional.  If reading after hours, one option for treatment is to seek an urgent care or  walk-in clinic for medical advice. 

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