Mumps: Causes, Prevention & How Long to Last

Mumps is a contagious illness that is brought on by a virus that spreads by saliva, nasal secretions, and close physical contact.

Salivary glands, commonly known as parotid glands, are largely affected by the disorder. Saliva production is carried out by these glands. Each side of your face has three pairs of salivary glands that are situated behind and beneath the ear. Salivary gland enlargement is the defining characteristic of the mumps.

Symptoms of Mumps

Mumps symptoms typically show up two weeks after being exposed to the infection. The flu-like symptoms that may manifest first include:

  • fatigue
  • headache and body aches
  • reduced appetite
  • minimal fever [1]

Over the next few days, a 103°F (39°C) high fever and swelling of the salivary glands develop. The glands might not all enlarge at once. Most frequently, they periodically swell and hurt. From the moment you come into contact with the virus until your parotid glands swell, you are most likely to transmit the mumps virus to another person.

The majority of those who catch the mumps exhibit viral symptoms. Some individuals, however, exhibit none or very few symptoms.