HFMD Symptoms & Causes: Hand Foot and Mouth Diseases (HFMD) in Children

HFMD Symptoms & Causes: Hand, foot, and mouth diseases (HFMD) are one of the most frequently found conditions in kids that causes nervous excitement. Hand, foot, and mouth diseases are reported to be contagious and can spread among children via playrooms, daycare centers, classrooms, and other places.

This disease is also reported to be having mild symptoms among grown-up kids but can lead to misery for babies. Here in this guide, there will discussion on everything about hand, mouth, and foot disease in children:

What is hand, mouth, and foot disease? 

This is a contagious disease that is often seen among young children. The report suggests that the major etiology for Hand, foot, and mouth disease includes the coxsackie virus. This virus affects on hands, mouth, and feet of children.

The symptoms of Hand, foot, and mouth diseases can range from mild to miserable. It includes sores in the mouth and rashes on the hands and feet of the infected children. It can make the toddler scream in anguish during eating food and dirking water. Children suffering from this disease can have lot of rashes all over their bodies along with sore inflection as well. 

Initial HFMD Symptoms (Signs) of hands, mouth, and feet disease in children  

The initial HFMD symptoms of the mentioned disease can be found in kids ranging from 6 months of age to 10 years of age. The initial signs include:

  • Children not drinking enough water
  • Basic early symptoms include fever, cold, throat pain, and weakness in the body.
  • Continuation of above-mentioned symptoms for more than 10 days
  • Extensive and severe fever

Note: Chances of the infection of hands, foot, and mouth disease s reported to be high in younger kids in comparison to comparatively old kids.  

Duration of hand, foot, and mouth diseases

The HFMD symptoms are seen in three to seven days and can last for ten days. After ten days, the blisters started dry, and the healing process start. 

How does HFMD spread?

HFMD is caused by the coxsackie virus. The major pathway of spreading the  HFMD includes contact with the blister fluid. It can also contaminate via the droplets produced during the sneezing as well as the coughing of the suffering children. This virus might stay present in the fluid released by the suffered kids several weeks after their recovery as well. 

HFMD symptoms disease in children
HFMD symptoms disease in children

Symptoms of hand, mouth, and foot disease 

Hand mouth and feet are viral infections. It causes a rash or blisters on the hands feet and around the mouth. It spreads easily by touching so we need to take care of children. There are some common symptoms seen in the hand, mouth and foot diseases that are listed below.

  • Common symptoms found in this disease include the common cold. HFMD can present with basic common early signs such as fever, sore throat, headache, and runny nose.  
  • You may also notice the small spots of sores on the tonsils and throat of children.
  • Children scream touching their sore palms and feet soles. 
  • Suffering kids might feel pain while swallowing food and water 
  • The skin may peel after healing of the rashes which is a harmless process. 

Treatment of HFMD

Generally, the symptoms of the mentioned HFMD disease is mild but can be severe depending on the immunity level of the children. The diagnosis is generally confirmed within 3 days. Clinicians recommend 10 days of treatment in order to completely cure the disease. Treatment as recommended by many the clinician includes:

  • Pain relievers such as acetaminophen and ibuprofen, and other medicines as per the level of the pain and situation of HFMD. 
  • Doctors also prescribe magic mouthwash for relieving the irritation of the rashes and pain around the mouth. 

What are the major complications faced in hand foot and mouth disease? 

Generally, the symptoms of the mentioned HFMD are mild but can be severe depending on the immunity of the kids. Children need care for five to six days until their fever and pain resolve. Following are the major complications in the case of HFMD: 

  • The kid might go through extensive pain preventing them from swallowing food and water as well. 
  • Extensive and severe fever can make the kid dull and down.  
  • The severe symptoms of HFMD can also impact the nervous system of the kids leading them to be lethargic, failing to focus on normal activities and sedation-like situation. 
  • There can be multiple blisters on the body along with extensive itching and pain.
  • In severe cases, children can lose their fingernails and toenails. 
  • The extensive hand foot and mouth disease can also lead to encephalitis among kids. This is a very rare complication.  
  • Dehydration among kids can also lead to major complications in HFMD. 

Prevention of hand, foot, and mouth disease

 This virus is very contagious. It is recommended to adopt some preventive measures for preventing the contamination of hand foot, and mouth disease in children. Parents need to take care of the following mentioned precautionary steps:

  • The basic yet most crucial preventive measure recommended includes regular and frequent washing of hands. Parents are recommended for monitoring whether their kids are washing their hands frequently before eating, after outdoor games, at school, etc.  
  • Parents are also recommended to use sanitizer before touching their young kids after arriving home.
  • Kids should be taught for developing the habit of covering their nose and mouth while coughing and sneezing. 
  • Parents/ other people should also cover their mouths and nose while coughing and sneezing.  
  • Parents should disinfect high-touch items such as toys, countertops, doorknobs, and other items. 
  • Don’t share the eating utensils, cups, towels, blankets, clothing, and other items. 
  • Parents should isolate the infected children. 
  • The clothes and essentials of children should be washed regularly.     

FAQs HFMD Symptoms & Causes

How long can the HFMD disease last in kids?

Generally, the mentioned HFMD disease last from 6 days to 10 days in kids. But the suffering time can be increased or decreased depending on the immunity of the children.  

What should I do, if my kid has HFMD?

In the case when the kid is diagnosed with HFMD, the parents are first recommended for isolating their suffering kid from the healthy ones. Basis pain relieving treatment along with the medicines and care as prescribed by the clinician is of utmost crucial. Home-made remedies for relieving blister pain as well as improving immunity are also recommended.     

How can my kid get HFMD?

HFMD is a highly contagious viral disease that can spread from blister fluid as well as fluid from sneezing as well as the coughing of the contaminated kid. Children can get contamination by their contaminated classmates, friends, and others during school time, playtime, etc. 

Is HFMD painful for kids?

Yes, the blisters as well as throat sores formed in the HFMD can be painful for the kids. It can be even more severe in the case of young children.  

How can we get rid of the HFMD?

Treatment as prescribed by the doctor, homemade cures for pain relief as well as for immunity improvement, along with preventive measures can help in getting rid of the HFMD. 

Can you be around someone with HFMD?

It is not recommended for the kids to be around someone with HFMD as it is highly contagious among kids.  

Can hand foot and mouth disease in adults?

Usually, it is seen among young children but it can develop in adults when they got exposer to the virus. There is no difference in the symptoms among adults, but the symptoms are reported to be mild among them.

Can parents also infect with hand foot and mouth diseases?

As mentioned above, adults can also get contaminated by this disease, yes, the HFMD virus can also contaminate parents as well. However, the immunity among adults is high, thus the chances of the occurrence, as well as the severity of the disease, are reported to be low among adults. 


Here in this guide, we discussed the extensive knowledge of hand foot, and mouth disease in children. I hope this article would help you to understand the symptoms, treatment, and prevention, of the virus. It is highly contagious. Parents should maintain good hygiene and take steps to keep it from infection. I hope this article gives enough information about hand foot and mouth disease and offers tips for a stay from such viruses and staying virus free.       

Source – https://www.cdc.gov/hand-foot-mouth/index.html

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