If you or your child has mumps, time and rest are the best treatments. There's little your doctor can do to speed recovery. But you can take some steps to ease pain and discomfort and keep others from becoming infected.
- Rest in bed until the fever goes away.
- Isolate yourself or your child to prevent spreading the disease to others. Someone with mumps may be contagious up to a week after the onset of signs and symptoms.
Take over-the-counter pain relievers, such as acetaminophen (Tylenol, others) or a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, others) to ease symptoms. Adults may also use aspirin.
Use caution when giving aspirin to children or teenagers. Children and teenagers recovering from flu-like symptoms should never take aspirin. This is because aspirin has been linked to Reye's syndrome, a rare but potentially life-threatening condition, in such children.
- Use a warm or cold compress to ease the pain of swollen glands.
- Wear an athletic supporter and use cold compresses to ease the pain of tender testicles.
- Avoid foods that require lots of chewing. Instead, try broth-based soups or soft foods, such as mashed potatoes or cooked oatmeal, for nourishment.
- Avoid sour foods, such as citrus fruits or juices, which stimulate saliva production.
- Drink plenty of fluids.
If your child has mumps, watch for complications. Call your doctor if your child develops:
Aug. 12, 2015
- Fever of 103 F (39 C) or greater
- Trouble eating or drinking
- Confusion or disorientation
- Abdominal pain
- In boys, pain and swelling of the testicles
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- Longo DL, et al., eds. Mumps. In: Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine. 19th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2015. http://accessmedicine.com. Accessed July 24, 2015.
- Cunningham FG, et al. Infectious diseases. In: Williams Obstetrics. 24th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2014. http://www.accessmedicine.com. Accessed July 24, 2015.
- Mumps vaccination. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/vpd-vac/mumps/default.htm#notvacc. Accessed July 24, 2015.
- Autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. http://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/autism/topics.html. Accessed July 24, 2015.
- AskMayoExpert. Mumps (adult). Rochester, Minn.: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; 2015.
- NINDS Reye's syndrome information page. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/reyes_syndrome/reyes_syndrome.htm. Accessed July 24, 2015.