The measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine is the best way to protect against mumps. Some vaccinated people may still get mumps if they are exposed to the virus. But the risk of getting disease in a vaccinated person is much lower compared to an unvaccinated person.
Children should get two doses of the MMR vaccine:
- the first dose at age 12-15 months
- the second dose at age 4-6 years
The mumps vaccine is safe and effective. Most children don’t have any side effects from the vaccine. The side effects that do occur are usually very mild, such as a fever or rash.
There is also an MMRV vaccine, a combination vaccine that protects against four diseases: measles, mumps, rubella, and varicella (chickenpox). Talk to a healthcare professional for help deciding which vaccine to use.
Updated June 2020
Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention