When students walk into Noah’s Ark Christian Preschool in Newburgh there’s one thing they must do before anything else: wash their hands. The young learners will continue to wash their hands throughout the day and the program director, Karen Miller, says this is in part to help fight diseases like hand, foot, and mouth disease.
At Deaconess Gateway, doctors say they have been getting a pretty solid stream of hand, foot and mouth patients in throughout the summer. Dr. Keith Tolar, who heads the pediatric urgent care at Deaconess, says that this year’s strain has been more potent.
The hand washing that goes on at Noah’s Ark is something Tolar approves of. He says the best way to prevent hand, foot, and mouth is by washing hands frequently. This is because the highly contagious virus is spread through fecal matter and oral secretions.
The disease shows up as red bumpy sores and rashes on the hands, feet and mouth, of course. Some sores can also show up in less desirable areas, like the mouth or buttocks. Doctors say if sores are in the mouth to stay away from acidic or salty foods.
The rise in hand, foot and mouth isn’t solely focused on kids. The disease which was once thought to only effect kids has been popping up in adults as well. Mets pitcher Noah Syndergaard has come down with hand, foot and mouth, but Tolar says that most adults don’t have anything to fear.