Ok, so today I’m going to tell you everything about HFMD in babies.
Allow me to introduce myself before I begin.
I’m Chandni, mom to a 13 month old baby boy – Devaj.
To help all the parents visiting this site, I decided to write about my first hand experience with HFMD.
Hand Foot and Mouth Disease in Babies and Kids
So what exactly is HFMD?
It is a contagious disease caused by a virus named Coxsackievirus A16.
I would like to share my experience with what I call, a mood killer disease which attacks our little champ’s hands, foot and mouth.
For the same reason, it is called the – Hands Foot Mouth Disease (HFMD).
HFMD mainly occurs in kids under the age of 10.
Why am I telling you about it?
I feel that all parents of babies and young children should be made aware of this disease.
Thus I have chosen SuperBaby as my platform to promote this awareness as I know you will definitely support me in this cause.
I will tell you my story in a little while, but first, let me share some important information about HMFD.
Characteristics of HFMD:
HMFD spreads from person to person, but do not misunderstand it with Foot and Mouth disease that is usually seen in animals.
Contact with infected discharge of mucus from throat, nose, saliva and fluids from ruptured blisters as well as infected faeces of the child are often the cause of transmission of this infection.
The first week of infection is the most contagious.
The incubation period is 3 to 7 days.
Don’t feel relaxed and be over confident as I was, if your baby doesn’t show any symptoms. Let’s call those seven days ‘Observation days’.
Oh! Hey, I am not trying to frighten you, I am simply trying to make you vigilant.
Children (below 10 years) are most vulnerable to this infection.
This is mostly spread in pre-schools.
Occasionally adults may also acquire the infection. But it will be milder than what it is in children because we are almost immune to Coxsackie A and B virus.
Other symptoms include:
- It usually begins with a fever
- Reduced appetite
- Sore throat
- Skin rashes with flat red spots (mainly on the palm)
When is HFMD most likely to occur?
Summer and early fall are the most common seasons for this infection but now-a-days it’s predominant throughout the year due to changing Global Climate.
Here’s my story – MUST READ:
Well, let me now share my experience with HMFD.
Devaj , my 13 month old son, was the victim.
We had an outing on a sunny Sunday and I must say, we had so much fun.
My baby has a good friend, his name is Anush and he is also a toddler.
They shared their food and juices and the outing was perky with the two active cuties.
The next day (Monday) evening I got a call from Anush’s mother.
The news was shocking.
Devaj’s friend was showing symptoms of HMFD.
The very next moment I fully scanned my baby only to conclude that he has no rash on his body and thought that he is safe by God’s grace.
I had a wicked smile. I might sound selfish. But I, like all other mothers, really didn’t wish to have that rash on my baby.
I ran for precautions to a Homeopathic clinic.
The doctor said that there was nothing to worry.
But she was wrong.
The fact is, Devaj got infected on that Sunday itself.
He had a high fever (above 100) by Wednesday night.
I gave him Fepanil to bring down the temperature.
On Thursday, we rushed to the pediatrician.
We talked about HMFD.
I saw a small blister when she examined his mouth.
DAMN! At that moment, I had nothing to say.
Unfortunately there is no specific therapy for this.
Acetaminophen and Ibuprofen may be prescribed for pain and fever.
Devaj was extremely restless on Friday.
Here’s a pic of blisters on his legs.
The doctor recommended giving him sweet soft cool foods.
That stupid blister inside my baby’s mouth was not allowing him to swallow any of his favorite dishes. This was the saddest part.
Another big problem was – he hates sweet foods.
Everything was a big challenge for me.
I gave him a warm soap less bath. Hygiene is very important.
On Saturday, the blisters came out one by one.
It was mainly on his buttocks, thighs, knees, some on his hands and foot. Surprisingly he was active as usual.
On Sunday some of them dried and some others popped. On Monday I noticed the blisters were calm and in a passive mode.
By Tuesday the blisters started drying up. Within one week all the blisters vanished. (Thank you almighty!)
Here’s how the dried up blister looks.
Experiences also vary from person to person. So please note that point.
In some kids, HFMD is very acute and they can have some of the worst experiences because of painful blisters.
These are my experiences with HMFD. Moms, it is better to cut short kisses and hugs as we don’t know who are unfortunate. Precautions are required for adults too.
Here is a picture I took. Hope this helps you identify HMFD quickly.
These red spots are the symptoms in the starting stage.
Blisters on the palm.
What to feed your child if he gets HFMD?
Well, I can help you in making the food menu during HMFD.
You have to give your child only soft sweet cool foods and lots of water.
- Fruit popsicles (don’t give citric fruits)
- Watermelon shake
- Cantaloupe smoothie
- Arrowroot porridge (best for infants)
- Rice porridge
- Ragi porridge (avoid multigrain).
Hope I succeeded in giving you an idea of what HMFD is all about.
My message to all Parents:
Dear Moms and Dads,
There is no need to panic. HMFD is not usually serious.
It is typically mild and your child will be ok in 7 to 10 days without any medical treatment! Keep him hydrated.
We can reduce the infection risk by practicing good hygiene, such as washing hands often. Disinfect frequently touched surfaces and objects especially if someone is sick.
Sometimes when your child is ill, it is easy to get angry and lash out at others or God. We feel like God is silent but he is indeed present and also by your side.
Your baby needs love and good care.
Two tiny feet,
That wave in the air…
Two tiny hands,
That tug at your hair…
And an adorable little face,
A bundle of joy to love & embrace. (Poet Unknown)
About the Author:
Chandni S Prakash is happily married since 11.11.12 . She was doing a course on company secretaryship. It was on 24th May, 2014 that she and her husband were gifted with their cute little boy, Devaj. She then spent her days looking after their little champ, who she claims keeps her very busy. Other than this, cooking, reading & singing are her other hobbies.