If you’re a parent with young children, chances are you’d have heard of hand, foot and mouth disease, more commonly known as HFMD. While some might already be familiar with the disease, it’s always important to take precautions to ensure that your kids stay healthy and HFMD-free. Here’s what every parent needs to know in order to be prepared!
What is HFMD?
A common but highly infectious childhood illness, hand, foot and mouth disease is caused by a large family of viruses known as Enteroviruses, which is responsible for a wide spectrum of viral infections that affect millions of people in the world. HFMD is most common in children younger than the age of 10, but older children and adults can contract it too.
What are the common symptoms to look out for?
The initial telltale signs can look a lot like flu at the start – fever, sore throat, and an overall lack of appetite are some of the first few symptoms to develop. The fever usually lasts for 2 to 3 days, followed by painful mouth sores or a blister-like rash that appears on the palms of the hand and soles of the feet. It can also show up on the knees, elbows, buttocks as well as genital area.
While it’s a generally mild disease that usually goes away on its own in about a week, it can sometimes lead to severe infections in the brain, lungs or heart in serious cases. If you suspect that your child has HFMD, you’re advised to consult a doctor for proper treatment and minimise the risk of further complications.
It’s also important to note that there are currently no vaccines available for HFMD in Singapore.
How does HFMD spread?
The disease is spread through direct contact with respiratory droplets, saliva, or fluid from the blisters of an infected individual. It can be transmitted through stools as well, so it’s important to wash your hands right away after changing diapers or soiled underwear. In addition, parents should avoid intimate contact such as kissing, hugging or sharing utensils with your child. You can also risk getting infected if you come into contact with contaminated objects or surfaces like children’s high chairs, toys and clothes.
HFMD is the most contagious in its first week, so we advise you to refrain from visiting crowded settings such as schools, daycare centres and shopping malls for at least 10 days after the symptoms have appeared.
Tip: If you’re a caregiver, we recommend taking preventive measures by disinfecting your home regularly with BioCair to safeguard yourself and other family members who have not been exposed yet. For those with two or more children in the household, try to separate the infected child from the other kids in two different rooms – and make sure to keep both areas clean and well-disinfected. This will help to keep bacteria levels to a minimum, and ensure a safe environment for everyone.
Safeguard your child against HFMD with BioCair
Aside from practicing good hand hygiene, parents need to remain vigilant and step up disinfection efforts to prevent the spread of HFMD – be it indoors or outdoors.
At home, it’s important to keep your environment clean, disinfected and germ-free with our BioCair Dry-Mist Disinfection Machines. Use it with the BioActive Anti-HFMD Air Purifying Solution to keep the HFMD nasties at bay. To reap the optimal benefit, turn on the machine for at least more than an hour per day, either before or during sleep. If there’s someone who contracted HFMD at home, it’s highly recommended to keep the machine running for more than an hour for better prevention.
Don’t forget to disinfect high-touch areas like potty chairs, crib rails and diaper-changing mats with the BioActive Anti-HFMD Pocket Spray! Non-toxic, non-irritant and contains zero alcohol, this child-friendly disinfectant is formulated to eliminate 99.999% of HFMD germs in less than a minute. What’s more, it’s proven to be safe for ingestion and inhalation so you can even spray it onto their pacifiers and bottles without worrying about any harmful effects.
You can also bring it out to disinfect in a pinch when you’re outdoors, keeping you and your tot safe at all times.
With BioCair, you can do your part to protect you and your loved ones from HFMD.