NWCH encourages residents to receive mumps vaccine
Outbreaks of mumps are being reported in Colorado and other states, according to a news release from Northwest Colorado Health. Mumps is a contagious virus that causes painful swelling in the cheek and jaw area. The disease typically starts with a few days of fever, headache, muscle aches, fatigue, and loss of appetite, followed by swollen salivary glands.
Those concerned they or their children may have mumps should contact a health care provider, the news release advised. Being vaccinated is the best way to prevent mumps. Though the disease is rare in the United States, it is still common in other parts of the world. Outbreaks occur when travelers who have not been vaccinated against mumps contract the disease and bring it to the U.S., where it spreads to others who are not protected.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends children receive two doses of MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) vaccine, starting with the first dose at age 12 to 15 months and the second dose at age 4 to 6. Colorado requires children have the MMR vaccine to enter child care or school.
Teens and adults should also be up-to-date on MMR vaccination. It is especially important for those who plan to travel internationally to receive the vaccine.
For more information, visit vaccines.gov. Northwest Colorado Health provides vaccines for all ages. To make an appointment or for more information about the vaccine, call 970-824-8233.