February 17, 2023
Dear Parent or Guardian:
Stricker Elementary School is experiencing an occurrence of Hand, Foot & Mouth Disease. In effort to take a proactive approach, we are notifying all parents and guardians of Kimberly School District. Additionally, maintenance and custodial staff will be increasing the frequency of disinfecting high traffic surface areas, and teachers are being provided CDC guidelines on appropriate handwashing. HFMD is a common viral infection that most often causes outbreaks in the summer and fall. Although the name of this illness sounds similar to hoof-and-mouth disease of cattle, HFMD is a completely unrelated disease.
What are the symptoms of HFMD?
Despite its scary name, this illness generally is mild. Symptoms include tiny blisters in the mouth and on the fingers, palms of hands, buttocks, and soles of the feet. Common cold signs and symptoms with fever, sore throat, runny nose, and cough may also be present. The most troublesome finding often are the blisters in the mouth, which make it difficult for the child to eat or drink.
How is HFMD spread?
The virus is spread through coughing and sneezing, through the fluid from blisters on the hands and feet, or through contact with the infected person’s stool (feces). Children with HFMD should be kept home until after the fever is gone and sores have healed. This will help reduce the spread of illness, but it won’t eliminate it completely.
How is HFMD diagnosed and treated?
A health care provider can identify HFMD by the symptoms reported and the appearance and location of the blisters. No specific treatment is available. Symptoms may be treated to provide relief from fever or pain from the mouth blisters. Offer your child plenty of cool fluids to help with sore throat. Cold foods such as flavored ice pops and ice cream also may help.
How do you control the spread?
• Make sure adults and children wash hands frequently and thoroughly with warm water and soap
• After using the bathroom, wash hands thoroughly with warm water and soap.
• After changing a diaper, wash both your hands and the baby’s hands with warm water and soap.
• Teach children to cover their noses and mouths with a tissue or their arm when coughing or sneezing.
• When using a tissue, wash hands well afterwards. Dispose of tissues that contain nasal secretions after each use.
For more information about Hand, Foot & Mouth Disease, contact your healthcare provider.
Kimberly School District