Mumps vs Measles
June 29, 2021 | Farah Jassawalla

Mumps vs Measles

Mumps and measles are two common childhood illnesses (prevalent among children aged 5-14). These ailments have been drastically reduced in number in recent decades with the MMR vaccine, which prevents both of these infections (the effectiveness of the immunization increases when two separate doses are administered).

These two infections are highly contagious and can spread quickly among unvaccinated children who have been exposed to the virus. Here, we identify mumps and measles to tell them apart and take necessary precautions to contain them.


You can contract the mumps virus by breathing in the saliva droplets of an infected person that they might have sneezed or coughed. You can also acquire it by sharing the utensils of an infected person.


Symptoms of the mumps virus become apparent 2 to 3 weeks after exposure to the virus. The most obvious sign of being infected with mumps is swollen salivary glands on one or both sides of your face (causing your cheeks under your ear to swell up). Other symptoms include:

      Pain and difficulty in chewing and swallowing



      Weakness and fatigue

      Loss of appetite

      Muscle aches

What to do:

If you contract mumps, you can try relieving these symptoms at home using over-the-counter pain medications such as Paracetamol, Ibuprofen, Advil, etc., and cold compress. It is necessary to get lots of rest.

Mumps is highly contagious for about nine days after symptoms appear, so it is important to be careful during this time period and avoid spreading the infection to other people.


The best way to prevent mumps is to get vaccinated against the infection. The mumps vaccine is usually given in conjunction with the measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine. Before starting school, children are recommended to get two doses of the MMR vaccine. Children should receive those vaccines when they are:

      Twelve to fifteen months of age

      Four to six years old

MMR vaccinations are strongly recommended for college students, international travelers, and healthcare workers in particular. There is no guarantee that a single dose will completely protect against the mumps.


Measles is a formerly common but dangerous viral infection among children. It can even be fatal for small children, so it is important to be careful around possible exposure and to be vaccinated. By doing so, you prevent contracting the virus and passing it to other people. The infection is spread when infected droplets are inhaled.


It is important to recognize measles, so you can take relevant precautions and prevent it from spreading. The symptoms of measles start becoming apparent 10-14 days after initial exposure. Here are the most common symptoms of measles:


      Dry cough

      Runny nose

      Sore throat

      Conjunctivitis (inflamed eyes)

      Tiny white spots with blue centers in the inner cheek lining, known as Koplik's spots.

      A rash consisting of large flat blotches that flow into one another.


While treating symptoms of measles at home, it is important to:

      Stay hydrated and drink water rich in electrolytes.

      Get lots of rest.

      Use a humidifier and steamer to relieve cough and sore throat.

      Bring fever down, which can be done by using over-the-counter medicine such as Tylenol and paracetamol. Book an appointment with Shifa4U to get your required medications.


Similar to mumps, the best way to prevent measles is to get vaccinated. The first dose of the measles vaccine is given to infants between the ages of 12 and 15 months, and the second dose between the ages of 4 and 6 years.

Recommended Packages

Farah Jassawalla

Farah Jassawalla is a graduate of the Lahore School of Economics. She is also a writer, and healthcare enthusiast, having closely observed case studies while working with Lahore's thriving general physicians at their clinics.