Hand, foot and mouth outbreak

HAND, foot and mouth disease is thought to be circulating around schools in Worthing.

The viral infection, that can affect young children, does not usually pose a serious threat to a child’s health, but is highly contagious.

Typical symptoms of the disease include cold, loss of appetite, cough, a moderately high temperature of around 38-39 degrees Celsius and a non-itchy red rash that develops on the hand and the feet and can develop into painful blisters.

The NHS advice says: “Hand, foot and mouth disease is a self-limiting condition, which means that it will get better on its own without treatment.

“Speak to your GP or call NHS 111 if you’re unsure whether your child has hand, foot and mouth disease.

“You should also contact your GP if your child isn’t drinking any fluid or their symptoms last longer than seven days.

“There is currently no cure for hand, foot and mouth disease, so treatment involves making your child feel as comfortable as possible while waiting for the infection to take its course.”

Paracetamol, ibuprofen and mouth gels can be used and plenty of fluids should be consumed to bring down a temperature.

A person with the disease is contagious until a week after the symptoms begin.