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Home :: Mumps

Mumps - Symptoms And Treatment

Mumps is a common viral illness, mostly of childhood, caused by a type of virus known as a paramyxovirus that infects the parotid glands-the salivary glands located at the jaw angles below the ears. The virus is contagious for about a week before the disease breaks out, which can make it difficult to track down the source of infection.

Mumps is transmitted from person to person by means of infected droplets of saliva or direct contact with contaminated materials. It can be contracted through sneezing, coughing, kissing, talking, breathing, drinking out of the same glass as an infected person, and sharing utensils. The incubation period of the virus can vary from fourteen to twenty-four days (the average is eighteen days). A person with mumps is contagious any time from forty-eight hours before the onset of symptoms to six days after the symptoms have started. This illness is not as contagious as measles or chickenpox, and one attack usually affords lifetime immunity. Mumps is most common in children between the ages of three and ten, although it can occur through teenage years and, in rare cases, in adulthood. If it does occur after puberty, the ovaries or testes may become involved and sterility may result. If the testicles are affected, they become swollen and painful; if the ovaries or pancreas is affected, abdominal pain results. Other organs that can be affected in rare, severe cases include the brain, pancreas, and kidneys-possibly with serious complications.

Information on the symptoms of mumps

Symptoms include swelling of one or both glands plus headache, fever, chills, decreased appetite, sore throat, and pain when swallowing or chewing, especially when swallowing acidic substances such as citrus juices. Often, one of the parotid glands swells before the other, and as swelling in one gland subsides, the other begins to swell.

In some cases, signs and symptoms of mumps are so mild that no one suspects a mumps infection. Doctors believe that about one in three people may have a mumps infection without symptoms.

Vitamins and nutrients for mumps

Suggested dosage
Vitamin C with bioflavonoids 500 mg every 2 hours until improvement is noted, up to 3,000-10,000 mg daily
Destroys the virus and eliminates toxins. For children, use sodium ascorbate form to lessen diarrhea.
Kelp 1,000-1,500 daily Contains essential minerals, iodine, and vitamins.
Lactobacillus bitidus As directed on label "Friendly" bacteria contain antibiotic substance that inhibit pathogenic organisms
Vitamin E For children, 200 IU daily for 1 week. For adults, 400-800 I U daily for 1 week Use d-alpha-tocopherol form.

Herbs for mumps treatment

  • Taken as a tea, dandelion cleanses and supports the liver. Ground into a powder and combined with a little aloe vera gel in a poultice, it helps to reduce swelling.
  • Elder flower tea helps to reduce fever.
  • Lobelia extract is good for pain. Take 1/2 teaspoon every three to four hours.
  • Yarrow reduces fever and inflammation and is a good lymphatic cleanser.
  • Mullein poultices are good for relieving pain and swelling of the salivary glands.
  • Drink plenty of pure water and fresh juices to keep the body well hydrated and to flush the system clean.
Considerations and prevention tips
  • Stay warm and dry, and get plenty of rest.
  • If testicular swelling and pain occurs, support the scrotum by means of an adhesive tape bridge& between the thighs and use cool compresses to help relieve pain.
  • Do not consume coffee, dairy products, tobacco, or white flour or sugar. Avoid acidic foods, such as pickles and citrus fruits or juices, as they are likely to cause discomfort.
  • If nausea and/or pain on swallowing is so severe that a person with mumps becomes unable to eat, intravenous administration of dextrose and fluids may be required.
  • A doctor may advise the use of corticosteroids to diminish testicular pain and swelling. These are powerful drugs, and should be used with caution.

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