How Long Is The Flu Contagious For? - 2024, CLT Livre

How Long Is The Flu Contagious For?

How Long Is The Flu Contagious For

Is flu contagious without fever?

How long will you be contagious? – For most flu viruses, that window is about a week, starting from a day before your symptoms appear, to six or seven days afterward. For colds, even people who are feeling better can spread the virus to others for up to three weeks.

  1. If your stomach bug was caused by a rotavirus, you can spread it to others even before you develop symptoms — and up to two weeks after you’ve recovered.
  2. You could feel perfect and still be shedding virus,” says Doomun.
  3. But you can significantly reduce the risk of being contagious by waiting to return until you’ve gone 24 to 36 hours without a fever with no medicines on board.

Meaning, no fever-reducing medication such as Aleve or Tylenol,” For gastrointestinal illnesses, you should wait until you are symptom-free — no vomiting or diarrhea — for at least 24 hours.

Can you about avoid the flu if someone in your house has it?

Learn Strategies for Staying Healthy – One of the best ways to avoid becoming sick with the flu is by staying away from people who are ill. But if someone in the house has the flu, it’s not possible to avoid all contact with them. To stay healthy, follow these simple tips for preventing the spread of the flu virus:

Wash your hands frequently, especially after an interaction with the sick person. Use soap and water; if these are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub to cleanse your hands. Disinfect surfaces or objects that may harbor the flu virus, Use paper towels that can be thrown away or cloth towels you can launder easily. Avoid touching your mouth, nose, or eyes because the virus can enter your body in these locations. Keep your personal items separate from those of the person who’s sick, This includes clothing, eating utensils, and toothbrushes. Wash your towels and clothing with hot water. Hot water helps kill the flu virus. Wear disposable gloves if you’re cleaning up body fluids or contaminated items, such as tissues. Also, wash your hands with soap and water as soon as you’re finished with chores like this. Cover your nose and mouth when you sneeze or cough by tucking your face into your elbow or sleeve. Try to avoid sneezing or coughing into your hands.

How to cure flu fast?

Step 1: Start with home remedies for the flu – As soon as you notice symptoms, there are a few things you can do to treat the flu at home while you monitor the situation or wait to talk with a doctor:

Take it easy and get plenty of rest – Going to bed early and naps are highly encouraged. Rest helps speed recovery. Stay hydrated – Making sure you’re getting enough fluids (especially water) helps you get better faster and reduces risks of complications. Although you may feel like you don’t want to eat or drink, try taking small sips of water, juice or broth regularly throughout the day. Try saline nasal spray – If your symptoms include a runny or stuffy nose, a saline nasal spray can help relieve pressure so you can breathe easier. Use over-the-counter medications to help lessen certain symptoms – Acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Advil) are often recommended by doctors to help reduce fevers and provide treatment for headache relief, However, if you’re treating a child with the flu, it’s important to only give them medications that have been recommended by their doctor. You should never give aspirin (acetylsalicylic acid) to children or teenagers who have the flu since it comes with a small risk of causing the potentially fatal Reye’s Syndrome.

If you’re wondering what else you can take for the flu, there are antivirals like Tamiflu that can be effective. Do you need a prescription for Tamiflu or other antivirals? Yes – and we’ll get to that in Step 5.

Which flu type is not contagious?

There are four different types of influenza viruses: Influenza A, B, C, and D. Influenza A and B cause epidemic seasonal infections nearly every year, but A is more common. Influenza, known as ” the flu,” is a highly contagious respiratory virus. It’s most common during the fall and winter months.

  1. It typically spreads through respiratory droplets when a person with the flu sneezes or coughs.
  2. The family of viruses that influenza is a part of is large.
  3. You may have heard that there are different types of influenza viruses — particularly influenza A and influenza B,
  4. Influenza A can be found in many species, including humans, birds, and pigs,

Due to the breadth of potential hosts and its ability to genetically change over a short amount of time, influenza A viruses are very diverse. They’re capable of causing a pandemic, This happens when a virus that’s significantly different from circulating influenza A strains emerges.

  1. Influenza B is typically only found in humans.
  2. Influenza C mainly occurs in humans, but has been known to also occur in dogs and pigs.
  3. Influenza D is found mainly in cattle.
  4. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), it’s not known to infect or cause illness in humans.
  5. Influenza A is further divided into different subtypes.
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These subtypes are based off of the combination of two proteins on the viral surface: hemagglutinin (H) and neuraminidase (N). There are 18 different H subtypes and 11 different N subtypes. For example, the most common influenza A subtypes that go around seasonally in humans are H1N1 and H3N2,

  • In 2017, H3N2 spread to dogs in Florida.
  • In 2015, this same strain also infected dogs in an earlier outbreak in Chicago.
  • Influenza A viruses can be further broken down into strains.
  • Unlike influenza A, influenza B isn’t further divided into subtypes.
  • But it can be broken down further into specific viral lineages and strains.

The naming of influenza virus strains is complex. It includes information such as:

influenza type (A, B, C, or D)species of origin (if isolated in an animal)geographical originstrain numberyear of isolationH or N subtype for influenza A

It’s estimated that influenza A infections account for 75 percent of confirmed seasonal influenza infections overall. Influenza B infections account for the remaining 25 percent. While most confirmed infections during flu season will be influenza A, the occurrence of influenza B infections can increase late in the flu season.

This happened in the 2017 to 2018 flu season. Both influenza A and influenza B are extremely contagious. People who get either type can spread the virus to others from up to six feet away when they cough or sneeze. You can also contract the virus by touching a surface that has the virus on it and then touching your nose or mouth.

Treatment for an influenza infection is the same regardless of the type you’ve contracted. Unfortunately, there’s no treatment that can kill the virus. Treatment is focused around relieving symptoms until your body clears the virus naturally. Antiviral medications may decrease the amount of time that you’re ill, which may also reduce your symptoms.

zanamivir (Relenza) oseltamivir (Tamiflu) peramivir (Rapivab)

There is also an antiviral drug called baloxavir marboxil ( Xofluza ) that was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in late 2018. The zanamivir, oseltamivir, and peramivir medications noted above work by reducing the ability of the virus to release itself from infected cells.

  1. The newer drug, baloxavir marboxil works by reducing the ability of the virus to replicate.
  2. These antiviral medications are most effective when started within the first 48 hours of your illness.
  3. They’re ineffective in treating illness caused by influenza C.
  4. Over-the-counter medications can be taken to relieve nasal congestion, fever, and aches and pains.

Getting lots of rest, eating a healthy diet, and drinking plenty of fluids helps your body fight the virus as well. An uncomplicated infection with either influenza A or influenza B can cause symptoms that last around one week. Some people may still have a cough or feel fatigued after two weeks.

  1. Some influenza A subtypes can cause more severe disease than others.
  2. For example, in the recent past influenza A (H3N2) viruses have been associated with more hospitalizations and deaths in children and the elderly than in other age groups, according to the CDC,
  3. In the past, it was thought that infection with influenza A was more severe than infection with influenza B.

However, a 2015 study in adults with influenza A and influenza B found they both resulted in similar rates of illness and death. Additionally, in a Canadian study looking at children 16 years old and younger, influenza B infection was associated with a higher risk for mortality than influenza A.

  1. Influenza C is regarded as the least serious of the three types that humans can get.
  2. It typically produces a mild respiratory illness in adults.
  3. But there’s some evidence that it can cause serious respiratory illness in children under age 2.
  4. The CDC estimates that each year, from 2010 to 2018, influenza infection resulted in between 9.3 and 49 million illnesses, 140,000 to 960,000 hospitalizations, and 12,000 to 79,000 deaths.

Data for the 2017 to 2018 influenza season indicates that 84.1 percent of positive samples were influenza A, while 15.9 percent were influenza B. Among hospitalizations, 86.4 percent were associated with influenza A, while 13.2 percent were associated with influenza B infection.

The seasonal flu vaccine is developed many months in advance of flu season. The viruses selected for the vaccine are based on research into which strains will likely be most common. Sometimes the circulating influenza viruses can mutate from one season to the next. Since experts must select the viruses to include in the vaccine months before flu season, there may not be a good match between the vaccine and the circulating viruses.

This can lead to a decrease in the effectiveness of the vaccine. But even when this happens, the vaccine still offers some protection. Flu vaccines can be either trivalent or quadrivalent. A trivalent vaccine protects against three flu viruses:

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H1N1 influenza A virusH3N2 influenza A virusinfluenza B virus

A quadrivalent vaccine protects against the same three viruses as the trivalent vaccine plus protection against an additional influenza B virus. Influenza C virus isn’t included in influenza vaccines. There are several different types of influenza virus: A, B, C, and D.

  • Influenza types A, B, and C can cause illness in humans.
  • But types A and B cause seasonal epidemics of respiratory illness nearly every year.
  • Influenza A typically causes the majority of illnesses during flu season.
  • It has the potential to lead to pandemics due to its dynamic, faster changing nature and large host range.

Both influenza A and B are extremely contagious and cause the same type of illness and symptoms. While there’s no cure for influenza virus, antiviral medications, plenty of fluids, and rest can help your body fight the infection. Yearly vaccination can also help you prevent contracting influenza A or B.

How do I know when my cold is no longer contagious?

You can spread the common cold from a few days before your symptoms appear until all of the symptoms are gone. Most people will be contagious for up to 2 weeks. Symptoms are usually worse during the first 2 to 3 days, and this is when you’re most likely to spread the virus.

Can you be in the same room as someone with the flu?

Keeping the person with flu in a separate sick room can help keep others in the family from getting the flu. Take these steps to create a separate sick room: Try to give the sick person their own room. If there is more than one sick person, they can share the sick room if needed.

Can you avoid the flu if exposed?

Care Advice – Influenza Questions and No Close Contact in the Last 7 days

  1. What You Should Know About Flu Exposure:
    • For most healthy people, the symptoms of influenza are like those of a bad cold.
    • But, with flu, the onset is more abrupt. The symptoms are more severe.
    • Feeling very sick for the first 3 days is common.
    • The treatment of influenza depends on your child’s main symptoms. It is no different from treatment used for other viral colds and coughs.
    • Most children with flu don’t need to see their doctor.
  2. Influenza Symptoms:
    • The main symptoms are fever, cough, sore throat and runny nose.
    • Most often, fever is present. (Exception: Sometimes, no fever if the child has a weak immune system.)
    • Other common symptoms are muscle pain, headache and fatigue.
    • Some people also have vomiting and diarrhea, but never as the only symptom.
  3. Influenza Diagnosis and Flu Tests:
    • During influenza season, if your child has flu symptoms, he probably has the flu.
    • Your child won’t need any special tests.
    • You should call your doctor if your child is High-Risk for complications of flu. These are children with chronic diseases. Examples of such diseases are asthma or a weak immune system. See the High-Risk list in Causes. Also, healthy children under 2 years of age are High-Risk.
    • For Low-Risk children, you don’t need to see your child’s doctor.
    • If your child develops a complication of the flu, then call your child’s doctor. Examples of complications are an earache or trouble breathing. These problems are included in the “What to Do” section.
  4. Influenza Treatment:
    • For most children, the treatment of flu is based upon symptom relief. It’s no different than the treatment of other viral coughs and colds.
    • Tamiflu is the main antiviral drug used to treat influenza in some children.
    • The AAP recommends it be used for any patient with severe symptoms.
    • The AAP also recommends the drug for most High-Risk children. See that list in Causes. Mainly, it is used for children in the hospital or those with chronic diseases.
    • Treatment is not recommended for Low-Risk children with normal flu symptoms. (AAP)
    • Most patients recover without taking Tamiflu.
    • Antiviral treatment must be started within 48 hours of the onset of flu symptoms. After 48 hours of fever, starting the drug is not helpful.
  5. Return to School:
    • Spread is rapid and the virus is easily passed to others. The time it takes to get the flu after contact is about 2 days. The range is 1-4 days.
    • Your child can return to school after the fever is gone for 24 hours. (CDC).
    • The influenza virus is spread in the air from sneezing and coughing.
    • It also can be spread by the hands with flu germs on them.
  6. What to Expect:
    • The fever lasts 2 -3 days.
    • The runny nose lasts 1-2 weeks.
    • The cough lasts 2-3 weeks.
  7. Call Your Doctor If:
    • You have other questions or concerns

Influenza Prevention Questions

  1. How to Protect Yourself from Getting Sick:
    • Wash hands often with soap and water.
    • Alcohol-based hand cleaners work very well.
    • Avoid touching the eyes, nose or mouth. Germs on the hands can spread this way.
    • Try to avoid close contact with sick people.
    • Avoid ERs and urgent care clinics if you don’t need to go. These are places where you are more likely to be exposed to flu.
  2. How To Protect Others – Stay Home When Sick:
    • Cover the nose and mouth with a tissue when coughing or sneezing.
    • Wash hands often with soap and water. After coughing or sneezing are important times. Alcohol-based hand cleaners also work well.
    • Limit contact with others to avoid getting them sick.
    • Stay home from school or work while sick with fever. Your child can return to school after the fever is gone for 24 hours. (CDC).
  3. Flu Shot:
    • Getting a flu shot is the best way to protect your family from flu.
    • Influenza vaccines are strongly advised for all children over 6 months of age. (AAP)
    • Adults should also get the shot.
    • The flu shot most often prevents the disease.
    • Even if your child gets the flu, the shot helps to reduce the symptoms.
    • A new flu shot is needed every year. Reason: Flu viruses keep changing.
    • After the flu shot, it takes 2 weeks to fully protect from flu. But then, the protection lasts for the full flu season. An antiviral medicine only protects from flu while taking it.
  4. Antiviral Drug (such as Tamiflu):
    • The drug Tamiflu may help prevent flu after close contact. But, it is only advised for some very High-Risk patients (CDC). See the High-Risk list.
    • The CDC recommends early treatment if flu symptoms occur, not preventive treatment. Reasons: Even after close contact, some children don’t get flu. Also, Tamiflu is helpful only while your child is taking it. It won’t prevent flu once your child stops taking it. To prevent flu, you would need to take the medicine every day for months.
    • Most doctors also wait until flu symptoms start before treating with drugs.
    • If your child is High-Risk, call your doctor within 24 hours of exposure. Your doctor will decide if an antiviral is needed.
    • High-Risk adults with recent close contact should also call their doctor. The High-Risk adult group includes chronic disease, pregnant, or over 65.
  5. Call Your Doctor If:
    • You have other questions or concerns
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Tamiflu Prescription Questions

  1. Treating Influenza – Tamiflu:
    • Tamiflu is a prescription anti-viral drug. It can be helpful in treating the flu virus.
    • These drugs should be started within 48 hours of when flu symptoms start. After 48 hours of fever, starting the drug is not helpful. It’s taken for a total of 5 days.
    • When to Use: Severe symptoms OR underlying health problems (High-Risk group)
    • For High-Risk children, call your child’s doctor at the start of flu symptoms.
    • Most healthy patients have mild to moderate symptoms. Tamiflu treatment is not needed for these patients.
    • The benefits are limited. Tamiflu reduces the time your child is sick by 1 to 1.5 days. It helps reduce the symptoms, but does not make them go away.
    • Tamiflu also has side effects. It causes vomiting in 10% of children.
    • Also, it is not used to prevent flu. Reason: You would need to take the medicine every day for months.
  2. Personal Stockpiling of Tamiflu – Not Advised:
    • Some people want a prescription for Tamiflu for all family members. They want it on hand just in case they come down with flu. They currently are well and have not been exposed to flu.
    • Doctors and the CDC are opposed to this practice. The AAP and your State’s Public Health Department also do not support this.
    • The supply of Tamiflu is limited. It is used for those with severe symptoms OR who are High-Risk.
  3. Call Your Doctor If:
    • You have other questions or concerns

Influenza Close Contact Within the Last 7 Days but Low-Risk child

  1. What You Should Know:
    • Although your child was exposed to flu, your child does not have any symptoms.
    • Symptoms usually develop within 1-4 days of seasonal flu contact.7 days is an outer limit.
    • Even if your child gets the flu, your child most likely will do fine. Anti-viral treatment (Tamiflu) is not needed for Low-Risk children.
    • Healthy children get better from flu by treating the symptoms.
  2. Call Your Doctor If:
    • You have other questions or concerns

Influenza Minor Contact (same school) but No Close Contact

  1. What You Should Know:
    • To catch influenza, your child needs to have close contact with an infected person.
    • Close contact includes kissing, hugging, or sharing eating or drinking utensils. It also includes close conversations within 6 feet (2 meters) (CDC 2013). Being in the same child care group or car pool is also close contact.
    • Being in the same school, church or building is not close contact.
    • If there was no close contact, your child probably will not get the flu.
    • Anti-viral medicine (Tamiflu) is not needed for Low-Risk children.
    • Healthy children get better from flu by treating the symptoms.
  2. Call Your Doctor If:
    • You have other questions or concerns