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Mumps Causes and Risk Factors

Mumps Causes and Risk Factors
Causes and Risk Factors

What causes the mumps?
Mumps was common until the mumps vaccine was licensed in the 1960s. Since then, the number of cases has dropped dramatically. Mumps is caused by the mumps virus, a member of a family of viruses known as paramyxovirus.

Mumps is about as contagious as the flu (influenza). The virus is in the saliva of an infected person and is spread from person to person through the air by coughing, sneezing or simply talking. You can contract mumps by breathing in saliva droplets of an infected person who has just sneezed or coughed. You can also contract mumps from sharing utensils or cups with someone who has mumps.

Risk factors
A number of different factors can combine and make it more likely that a person will experience the mumps. For example, children aged 2-12 are the most common people who get the mumps. Tell your doctor if you experience any of the following risk factors. These factors increase your chance of developing mumps:

Age - Mumps most commonly occurs in children ages 2 - 12. However, the infection can occur at any age.

Exposure to the virus - Being exposed to unvaccinated people or to people who have mumps puts you at greater risk of developing the viral infection. The risk is greatest for international travelers or people in contact with international travelers.

Immune system – People with a weakened immune system are more likely to develop the mumps, even if they have been vaccinated for the mumps.

Season - People are more likely to contract mumps in winter and spring.

Travel - Mumps occurs in the United States but is more common in other parts of the world. Anyone traveling outside the United States should be vaccinated for mumps.

Vaccination - Anyone who has not had two doses of a mumps vaccine after a first birthday (usually measles-mumps-rubella, or MMR) is at risk for getting the mumps. Also, people born before 1956 who were not vaccinated against mumps may be more likely to contract the virus.

The mumps occurs when the viral infection is passed from one person to another. During a severe attack, a person can even become sterile. But how can you be sure that you are experiencing the mumps? Learn to identify the symptoms of mumps here.

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Tags: vaccination, contagious, vaccinated, infection, infected, sneezing, symptoms, coughing, vaccine, Flu, flu vaccination, about children, air traveling, become doctor, about viruses, flu symptoms, being strong, age factors, Flu Vaccine, air health
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