What is it?

Mumps is a contagious viral illness caused by the paramyxovirus which primarily infects the salivary glands

It is usually a childhood disease but can sometimes cause serious complications especially in adults

What are the symptoms?

Painful swelling of the salivary glands below the ears near the jaw line

Other symptoms include fever, headache, muscle aches, tiredness and loss of appetite

Up to 30% of people who are infected with mumps show very mild or no symptoms

Mumps symptoms begin 12-25 days after exposure to the virus

How can I contract mumps?

By coming into contact with the saliva of an infected person

Where can I contract it?


It’s a global problem

Epidemics occur every 2-5 years

What vaccines are available?

Children born in Canada receive the mumps vaccine as part of the measles, mumps, rubella (MMR) immunization

Since 1996 children get the MMR vaccine in 2 doses

The first at age 1, the second at age 5 If you are pregnant you should not get the vaccine because it contains a weakened version of live rubella virus which could pose a risk to your unborn child

How many shots will I need?

In British Columbia, it is recommended that people born after 1956 get 2 doses of the vaccine unless you know you had the diseases for sure

Will I need a booster?

No, providing you have had two doses of the MMR vaccine

How can I prevent mumps?

Avoid personal contact with anyone who has mumps

Wash your hands with soap and water thoroughly and often

Keep alcohol-based hand sanitizers available for times when it is not convenient to wash your hands

Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth

Keep shared surfaces clean and disinfected

Don’t share personal items such as utensils or drinks

What is the treatment?

There is no treatment except supportive and symptomatic care

In most cases, people recover from mumps with rest and care at home

You should stay home for at least 5 days after your glands swell

In complicated cases a hospital stay may be required

"The Burnaby location has very nice staff that makes your less than fun stay much better (who likes being stuck by one or more needles). They give vaccinations for basically anything that you could need wile out travelling the world. "
Mike G - Yelp