Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease in Adults – What To Expect

Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease in Adults. Recently my daughter (aged 3) contracted Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease which prompted me to read everything I could find on HFMD

Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease in Adults

Recently my daughter (3 years of age) contracted Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease which prompted me to read everything I could find on symptoms of HFMD.

If you are lucky enough to have never heard of HFMD before here is some information from Wikipedia.

Hand, foot and mouth disease (HFMD) is a common human syndrome caused by highly contagious intestinal viruses of the picornaviridae family typically characterized by a mild fever followed by a rash of flat discolored spots and bumps that may involve the skin of the hands, feet, and oral cavity. HFMD mainly affects infants and children, but can occasionally occur in immunocompetent adults.

[8] Contaminated objects can also spread the disease.[8] Coxsackievirus A16 is the most common cause, and enterovirus 71 is the second-most common cause.[6] Other strains of coxsackievirus and enterovirus can also be responsible

Rash on hand and feet of a 36-year-old man Rash on the soles of a child’s feet Cause[edit] The viruses that cause the disease are of the Picornaviridae family. Coxsackievirus A16 is the most common cause of HFMD.[6] Enterovirus 71 (EV-71) is the second-most common cause

[12] Complications[edit] Complications from the viral infections that cause HFMD are rare, but require immediate medical treatment if present. HFMD infections caused by Enterovirus 71 tend to be more severe and are more likely to have neurologic or cardiac complications including death than infections caused by Coxsackievirus A16.[18] Viral or aseptic meningitis can occur with HFMD in rare cases and is characterized by fever, headache, stiff neck, or back pain.

[8] No antiviral medication or vaccine is available, but development efforts are underway.[13][14] Most cases require no specific treatment .[5] Simple pain medication such as ibuprofen or numbing mouth gel may be used

My daughter had a skin rash and a fever but overall the disease did not have a serious affect.

HFMD Symptoms

She did not have some of the normal symptoms like a sore throat, runny nose and cough which is normal for young children.

She was tired but not overly cranky.

At first I thought her molars were coming in. I never suspected she had a viral infection Hand, foot, and mouth disease also known as HFM according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

People are often infected by close contact or direct contact with an infected person or hard surfaces.

Hot spots tend to be child care centers in summer and early fall seasons.

Some research suggested that Adults and older children have a milder form of the disease but that was not my case.

I read that people over the age of 10 are more susceptible to the disease with a weakened immune system.

Symptoms Hand-foot-and-mouth disease may cause all of the following signs and symptoms or just some of them. They include: Fever Sore throat Feeling of being unwell (malaise) Painful, red, blister-like lesions on the tongue, gums and inside of the cheeks A red rash, without itching but sometimes with blistering, on the palms, soles and sometimes the buttocks Irritability in infants and toddlers Loss of appetite The usual period from initial infection to the onset of signs and symptoms (incubation period) is three to six days. A fever is often the first sign of hand-foot-and-mouth disease, followed by a sore throat and sometimes a poor appetite and malaise. credit Mayo Clinic

I did not find any detailed information regarding risk to pregnant women or very much info on Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease in Adults.


Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease in Adults – What To Expect

I Contracted HFMD

About two days after my daughter contracted Hand, Foot, Mouth Disease I contracted it as well.

HFMD is MUCH worse in adults.

The blisters all over my hands, mouth and feet were very painful.

The pain was so intense I was choking back tears while helping my daughter get dressed (we were both quarantined at home for one week).

Walking was also extremely painful and the painful mouth sores prevented me from eating or drinking (note: I could eat cheese and I drank as much water as I could). Cold foods like ice cream and smoothies relieve some pain.

I would not wish HFMD on anyone.

Especially if you have a small child at home you need to care for at the same time.

The upside – HFMD does not last very long and in my case the pain was only great for about 3 days.

The disease also progresses quickly.

The downside – The after effects last a long time.

My hands and feet are covered in dry skin from where the blisters have peeled off so my skin is raw.

It has been 2 weeks since I have ‘recovered’.


Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease in Adults


What I have Found that Helps with the Dry Skin

1) I cut my nails as short as possible. This helps as you cannot ‘pick’ at the skin as easily.

2) Aveeno Intense Relief Hand Cream. I found Aveeno Intense Relief to be the only moisturizer to have an impact on the dry skin.

This is not a sponsored post but it is seriously the only thing I found to help so I wanted to share it with you.

3) Time. Every day my hands are looking just a smidgen nicer.

Books are too hard to read with dry fingers so I reclined on the couch and watch a lot of TV. 

Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease in Adults is nasty.

There is really no other way to put it but it does not last forever and most people recover without complications.

Have you had HFMD?

What worked for you?

*I have a B.A. after my name not a MD. None of this is medical advice. Please see a doctor if you need medical advice*

Additional Reading, When Getting Pregnant is Not Easy,  The Distracted Child: an Infographic and How to Prevent SIDS.

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