Our infant does not appear to be well. Based on spots around her mouth, hands and feet, we suspect hand, foot and mouth disease. We also think that she has a sore throat because suddenly she doesn't want to breastfeed or bottlefeed or drink from a spoon.

We brought our infant to the pediatrician. They told us that they suspect hand, foot and mouth disease, but because the symptoms were not typical, they gave our infant a blood test. Besides diagnosing a painkiller (ibuprofen) they did not give us any medicine.

While awaiting the blood test results, what can we do in the meantime to keep our infant fed and hydrated, if she doesn't want to eat?

  • If you suspect a virus, then you need to seek a proper medical professional. Curing a sore throat will never cure a virus. May 5, 2014 at 3:34
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    We did see a pediatrician, and get a blood test and a swab done, but are waiting for the results. In the meantime, baby still needs to eat and drink, but how do we help baby to drink if baby refuses to? May 5, 2014 at 13:28
  • Thanks for the clarification. Something like that would be great to put in the question at the beginning as it narrows it quite well to your immediate needs. Hopefully you also asked your pediatrician this particular question. May 5, 2014 at 13:29
  • I have done what you suggested. May 8, 2014 at 10:25

2 Answers 2


We discovered that in spite of a sore throat, our infant enjoys eating ice cubes. We thus freeze milk or water into thin ice cubes using an ice cube tray or a small cup, and break it into small pieces to feed the infant.

Here is a quote from an adult who tried this method (see link) to treat his own sore throat:

For day-time relief, ice-cubes have been a thing of the Gods. Grab a pint of water, stick a dozen ice cubes in. Sip the water, suck on an ice-cube. The coolness helps to keep the swelling under control and the swallowing helps lubricate the throat. To me, significantly better than any boiled sweet or lozenge. Make sure you go via the water, lest you stick the ice cube to the inside of your mouth.

Our infant also enjoys eating cold foods such as frozen blueberries.

I hope this is helpful to other parents in similar situations.


It's slow, but works. Suggested by our daycare provider (home-based) and later suggested by a pediatrician: spoon-feed the infant.

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