What you need to know about Hand Foot & Mouth Disease

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WAHOO, Neb. (WOWT) -- Back to school time is prime time for colds and flu. It's also peak season for the virus - Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease.

In this month's Health Check - what to watch out for and how to prevent your kids from getting it.

Mason Kloke is typically a happy, healthy kid. So when he got fussy and a fever earlier this summer., "We called the doctor," his mother Jill Kloke said.

"They looked in his throat and he had all these little legion type white spots in his throat," Kloke added.

"And he had some red dots around his lips - and when we took off his socks and he had them on his feet."

All signs of Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease.

Fremont Health's Dr. Sarah Grauman says children under seven are most at risk. Kids like Mason, who attend daycare, are an even bigger target.

"It's common where there are areas where there's fecal - oral transmission. It's very common in daycare centers because of the potty training and changing of diapers," said Dr. Grauman.

"Everyone is putting stuff in their mouth, touching toys. I mean it's just constant. It's kind of hard not to avoid," Dr. Grauman added.

So when Mason got it, his big brother Haden got it, too. Again.

Serese Cole: "How many times have you experienced this in your house?"

"Probably five times," Jill said.

So how do you avoid getting it? Washing your hands is your best defense. Doctors say if you have or work with kids - wash your hands often. Treating Hand Foot and Mouth... well, that's not as simple.

Dr. Grauman said, "There's not really a whole lot you can do. Tylenol and Ibuprofen for the fever and then just fluids."

Fluids are critical. Because of those mouth sores, kids may not want to eat or drink and can easily become dehydrated.

"He would kind of scratch at his throat a little bit," Jill Kloke shared.

Popsicles and Pedialyte are a good and soothing alternative.

Mason's hands and feet are now looking good. But mom isn't taking any chances. They're washing hands all the time. Hoping this time - it works.

Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease symptoms usually last about a week - and your child should stay home during that time. But kids can be contagious even after those symptoms wear off. And parents - Beware! Adults can get get Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease, too.