How long are healthy adults contagious with the flu?


For up to seven days according to health officials.


Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

DC Department of Health

Maryland Department of Health

Virginia Department of Health

Eric Brenner M.D., Medical Epidemiologist at Arnold School of Public Health, University of South Carolina


Coughing and sneezing co-workers have you considering sporting a surgical mask?

Our Verify team found several of you taking to Facebook and Twitter complaining about co-workers with the flu who refuse to take-off.

Looks like they didn't get the memo.

Healthy adults begin to infect others the day before they ever develop symptoms, the Centers for Disease Control says.

Once you are sick, you have plenty of time to spread germs.

"Most people are maybe infectious only for about 3 or 4 or 5 days, perhaps a week at the most and people start to become infectious even the day before they start to become sick," Medical Epidemiologist Eric Brenner said. "That's a bit tricky because they don't know that they are sick and maybe they aren't taking precautions then."

Even trickier, the CDC says some people can be infected with the flu virus but not show any symptoms, and according to a recent study from the University of Maryland, you can pass it on to someone just by breathing the same air.

Best advice? Stay home for at least 24 hours after you have a fever to cut down on the chances of spreading the virus.


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