Hand, Foot, and Mouth Disease

  • Caused by a virus.
  • Common in young children in summer and fall seasons.

Signs and Symptoms

May cause very mild or no symptoms. Some that may occur include:

  • Mild fever
  • Headache
  • Sore throat
  • Lack of appetite or energy along
  • Small, painful blisters in the mouth
  • Skin rash of red spots, often topped by small blisters on hands, soles of the feet


  • Coughing, sneezing or direct contact with articles used by the infected person.

The virus can live for a long time in feces (stool).


There is no medical treatment, only comfort measures:

  • Give your child soft, lukewarm or cold foods if mouth blisters reduce appetite.
  • Provide lots of fluids to avoid dehydration (not enough water) (e.g., popsicles.)

Exclude children if symptomatic. They can return when they are fever free, have no other symptoms for a minimum of 24 hours, and feel well enough to attend and participate in activities.


  • Wash hands with soap and water after coughing, sneezing, changing a diaper, eating or preparing food
  • Cover mouth when coughing
  • Do not share drinks or eating utensils with others