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Prevent Mumps: Know the Facts

An outbreak of mumps has developed in King County, mainly in the Auburn area, but the outbreak can easily spread to other schools and areas in King County. Get informed about how to prevent mumps, what the symptoms are, and what state vaccine requirements are for schools and students.

Mumps is a disease caused by a virus. It typically starts with a few days of fever, headache, muscle aches, tiredness, and a loss of appetite. Then a person with mumps may develop swollen cheeks or jaw.

Most people with mumps get well in a few weeks. Some people who get mumps may have a mild illness or may not even know that they have the disease. However, mumps can occasionally cause serious health problems, especially in adults. These health problems can include swelling of the brain or deafness.

How can you prevent mumps?
      • Get the mumps vaccine (included in the MMR vaccine).
      • Stay away from anyone who has mumps.    
      • Wash your hands often with soap and water.
      • Don’t share cups, spoons, forks, baby bottles, and other utensils.

What to do if you think you have mumps
      • Call your doctor if you or your child have the signs of mumps: fever, headache, muscle aches, tiredness, loss of appetite, and swollen cheeks or jaw.
      • Stay home and away from other people. This includes staying away from family as much as possible so they don’t get sick.

Learn more:
      • Information about mumps from King County Department of Health.
      • Updates on the mumps outbreak in King County on the Public Health Insider blog.
      • Read about Mumps Outbreaks: Why We Care About Mumps and Is the Vaccine Working? by Dr. Jeff Duchin, Health Officer for Public Health – Seattle & King County
      • Find information about state vaccine requirements and exemptions in schools on Highline’s Health & Wellness website.