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Hand, Foot & Mouth Disease. How to Prevent Outbreaks from Happening in Our Schools

The dreaded Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease always reminds me of its lethal cousin, Foot & Mouth. When my daughter was attending Seton Montessori School in Clarendon Hills, it always triggered mild panic when I would hear of some other child afflicted with HFMD in my daughters class.

What is Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease?

Hand, foot, and mouth disease (HFMD) is a viral illness that typically affects young children. It is characterized by a rash on the hands, feet, and mouth, as well as a fever and other symptoms. HFMD is highly contagious and can be spread through direct contact with an infected person or through contact with objects or surfaces contaminated with the virus.

How Can We Prevent the Spread of HFMD?

To prevent the spread of HFMD, it is important to practice good hygiene and take steps to prevent the virus from spreading. Some ways to prevent the spread of HFMD include:

  • Washing your hands frequently with soap and water, especially after using the bathroom, changing a diaper, or touching an infected person or surface

  • Disinfecting frequently touched surfaces, such as doorknobs, toys, and countertops, to kill the virus

  • Avoiding close contact with an infected person, such as sharing cups, utensils, or towels

  • Avoiding touching your mouth, nose, or eyes, as this can help prevent the virus from entering your body

  • Covering your mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing, and disposing of used tissues immediately

Go to School or Stay Home?

It is important to keep an infected child home from school or daycare until they have been fever-free for 24 hours. This will help prevent the virus from spreading to other children and adults. By practicing good hygiene and taking steps to prevent the spread of HFMD, you can help protect yourself and others from this viral illness.

As always, the trained staff at Downers Grove Immediate Care is here to help. If you suspect your child may have hand, foot, and mouth, we can provide testing and care to help your child get back to full strength again.

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