Mumps is primarily characterized by fever and tiredness. It is caused by the mumps virus. The illness progresses in several stages and the mildest of symptoms include fever, headache, muscle aches, fatigue and loss of appetite.
The next stage of the mumps infection leads to the swelling of parotid salivary glands (saliva secreting glands situated below the ear). The bilateral swelling becomes tender in due course of time. Mumps is an excellent example of infectious disease. It can spread from person to person. Currently, there is no treatment available for mumps. Children in their early ages can be given the measles-mumps-rubella vaccine to prevent the infection of the mumps virus.
Prevention and Cure:
- To what age group is the vaccine given?
- Children (and newborns) should definitely get the MMR (Measles-Mumps-Rubella) vaccine. The MMR vaccine comes in the form of two doses. The first dose is given at the age of 12 to 15 months while the booster dose is given to the children at the age of 4 to 6 years.
- The MMR vaccine is not given to children below the age of 1 year as the mother’s antibodies make the MMR vaccine less effective.
The vaccine is given at an interval of 28 days if an adult has not taken the vaccine in his/her childhood.
Also Read: Four Toothache Remedies for Children
What to do if you are already exposed to mumps virus?
If you are infected by mumps virus during an outbreak, the MMR vaccine is to be given within 72 hours of being exposed. This would lower the risk and illness caused by the virulent strain.
What to do if you have acquired mumps virus?
The following steps can be followed to combat the mumps virus:
- Consumption of plenty of fluid materials. Fruit juices should be completely avoided as they stimulate the production of saliva. This results in the excruciating pain of the salivary glands.
- Use frozen ice packs to relieve the swollen part and to reduce the pain caused by the same.
- Mushy and soft food can be eating. This avoids chewing which can again cause pain.
- Prepare a warm water and salt solution. This is the gargled in order to alleviate the pain caused due to the swollen glands.
- Use painkillers such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen.
How to decrease the spread of Mumps?
- One should always wear masks, if infected, by mumps virus. Sneezing and coughing transmits droplets which are responsible for the transmission of mumps.
- The cutlery and plates used by an infected person should be different and should be washed with utmost care.
- Food and drinks should not be shared with an infected individual.
- Wash hands with water and soap regularly.
What are the tests required to confirm mumps?
- Physical examination of tonsils can be examined. In case of an infected person, the tonsils get pushed to the side.
- The physician measures your body's temperature.
- Samples of blood, urine or saliva is required to confirm diagnosis.
- In severe cases the CSF (Cerebrospinal Fluid) is taken from the spine.
Tags: Mumps treatment, Mumps in adults, Causes of mumps
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