What is roseola?
It is a very common illness, especially in children less than two years of age. Roseola is caused by a virus. It usually lasts for a week with:
High fever, often up to 104 degrees for three to five days
Then a skin rash of pink patches over the entire body for several days
How does roseola spread?
It's not clear how roseola spreads. It may spread by contact with saliva or mucus from the nose.
When is roseola contagious?
Probably several days before the symptoms until the end of the fever.
After exposure, it can take five to 15 days to develop the illness.
How do I know if my child has roseola?
If the child has symptoms, see your doctor. Roseola is diagnosed by the typical symptoms.
What should I do if my child has roseola?
Treatment: Follow your doctor's recommendations:
Help the child recover by encouraging rest, nutrition, and plenty of fluids to drink.
If the baby is uncomfortable with the fever:
dress the baby lightly
give lukewarm baths
the doctor might recommend acetaminophen
Should my child stay home?
Children can attend when they feel well enough to participate. Notify your Head Start program.
To limit the spread:
Wipe noses with clean tissues, throw them away, and wash your hands.
Cough and sneeze into your elbow and away from people.
Don't share food, pacifiers, bottles, or toothbrushes. Wash eating utensils, drinking cups, and mouthed toys well between uses.
Don't kiss children on the mouth.
Click here to download the printable PDF version.