Hand, foot and mouth

Hand, foot and mouth is very contagious and easily spread and is common in children under ten.

It is possible to catch the disease more than once but children are unlikely to catch it again during the same outbreak.

Generally, the disease is mild and short-lasting and will clear after about 7-10 days.


Symptoms start appearing three to five days after infection and last for seven to ten days. First symptoms will include fever, loss of appetite, sore throat or small red spot in the mouth, throat and skin.

After one or two, red spots in the mouth will develop into painful ulcers, particularly around the tongue, gums and inside of the cheeks. It may be difficult to eat, drink or swallow.

Any red spots on the skin will turn into a non-itchy rash over the next two days. The spots are flat or raised and will develop on the palms of the hands, soles of the feet and between the fingers and toes.

Exclusion period

Until symptoms have subsided.

Read more about this illness at the NHS website.