As parents, we all need to be extra careful with everything we give our children simply because we want them to be healthy and safe from certain diseases. However, we can’t guarantee that we can protect them at all times – since pathogens or disease-causing microorganisms are literally everywhere.
For parents who are fond of bringing their kids to the mall, daycare centers and playhouses, be wary about them being infected with various contagious diseases such as chicken pox and influenza or flu, among others.
A mother from the Philippines is warning other parents against bringing their children to crowded places, especially playhouses in malls and shopping centers. These places are always packed with people from all walks of life – which may include those who are currently harboring disease-causing pathogens.
On her Facebook post, Madelyn Bercasio Gurango detailed how her son, Clark, contracted Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease (HFMD), a viral infection that affects mostly children and may cause the appearance of rashes in certain parts of the body.
Madelyn said that after going to the pediatrician for Clark’s monthly check-up, she decided to give the boy his reward. They went to the mall and spent time in a playhouse. Clark had so much fun but a day after, he developed high fever and vomiting.
The next day, Clark developed rashes which started from his feet up to his hands and mouth.
The worried mother rushed Clark to the hospital to get checked and when the doctor saw the rashes, he immediately said that it’s HFMD.
The rashes have spread to his legs and thighs.
Clark’s hands have been affected, too.
In fact, the doctor said that this disease is caused by a virus and it’s the time of the year that most cases are reported.
It's contagious and Clark was advised to stay home and avoid going to crowded places.
“Today, it has already been a week that Clark feel’s better but he is still drinking his medicines. This post is sending awareness to parents for them to prevent their children being infected and to know what to do in case the illness emerges.”
Parents, here’s everything you need to know about Hand, Food and Mouth Disease (HFMD):
What is Hand, Food and Mouth Disease (HFMD)?
Hand, Food and Mouth Disease (HFMD) is an illness caused by a virus, which usually affects children below five years old. However, in some cases, it can affect even teens and adults.
Is it contagious?
Yes, since it’s a mild viral infection, it can be transmitted from one person to another. The virus that causes this infection is a coxsackievirus. This infection is prevalent in Asian countries such as the Philippines.
What are the signs and symptoms?
The common signs and symptoms of hand, foot, and mouth disease are high fever, feeling unwell, fatigue, sore throat, irritability among infants and children, loss of appetite and a distinct rash.
The rash associated with HFMD is reddish and itchy with small blisters that appear on the feet up to the hands. HFMD rash also appears on the palms, soles, and buttocks. On the contrary, you’ll know if it’s chicken pox if the palms and soles are spared by the blisters.
Also, there are painful, red, and blister-like lesions on the gums, tongue, inside of the cheeks and around the lips.
How is it treated?
Since the causative agent of HFMD is a virus, it’s self-limiting. This means that there is no needed treatment for the infection and it will go away on its own. The treatment used by doctors are usually geared toward relieving the various symptoms experienced by the child. Visit a pediatrician for a consultation before giving any medicine to your child.
HFMD is a mild disease but make sure to visit a doctor if the mouth sores keep the child from drinking fluids, if the child is dehydrated and if, after a few days, the signs and symptoms worsen.
Can it be prevented?
Yes, in fact, prevention is always better than cure. Avoid crowded places where children mingle in a common place without adequate ventilation such as playhouses, day care centers and playgrounds, until the outbreak season passes.
If you can’t avoid these places, it is important to educate your child on proper handwashing to remove the germs on their hands and reiterate that putting their fingers in the mouth is unhealthy.
Infected people should not go out and isolate themselves to prevent the spread of the virus. Also, day care owners should disinfect their surfaces regularly.