Reblog: How Long is the Flu Contagious?


When Contagiousness Begins

By the time you’re contagious, you’ve usually already been sick for a while without knowing it. Within 24 to 72 hours after contracting influenza, you will begin to spread the virus. It depends on your immune system’s constitution going in. When symptoms begin, you can remain contagious for as long as five days. Sometimes you won’t be contagious longer than 48 hours after symptoms begin. Either way, you’re looking at three days to a straight week of being contagious with the flu.

Dealing With Those Who Are Sick Without Getting Sick Yourself

Did you know you can pick up doctor’s masks and latex gloves in bulk, and relatively cheaply? With a single purchase, you could have enough supplies to cover cases of influenza in your family for many years. Influenza is passed through fluid, primarily. But fluid is exhaled in micro-droplets of moisture which can be inhaled by someone who is not contagious. Ergo, though fluid is transmitted through fluid, it has an “air” component as well. You want any part of your body that may be in contact to fluid from another’s body to be protected. Washing hands after using doorknobs and avoiding touching your face too often are also great ways to ensure that you keep any contagions from afflicting you. Cover all wounds with bandages, and be sure to sterilize them with hydrogen peroxide, hand sanitizer, alcohol, or whichever means are most preferable to you. Drink lots of fluids as a regular operational measure. Eat lots of fruits and vegetables, and avoid processed foods. Exercise regularly. By keeping yourself healthy and hygienically motivated, you’ll avoid most sicknesses including the flu.

What To Do If You’re Contagious

Be considerate of others. You hate feeling sick, don’t spread the pain. A nice warm shower of steam and heat can help get you clean. Wash your hands and face thoroughly, and expurgate as much phlegm as possible, being sure to clean up after yourself if you make a mess. Find a place where you can remain separate from the rest of the household for the duration of your illness. Avoid going out in public when you can. If you can wear gloves in public and carry a rag for sneezes and coughs with you, this helps as well. When the coughs come, cover your mouth. But don’t use your hand; you’re probably going to touch someone with that hand. Cough into your sleeve or jacket, and try not to hug too much. Also, don’t share drinks, food, cigarettes or other smokable things like a hookah. Kissing is right out.

Avoiding Areas Of High Contamination

Contagions are more likely to take place in areas where there is substantial diverse traffic. Public places are very guilty. Libraries, bus stations, airports, train stations, post offices, the DMV–anywhere the majority of the population may filter through on a regular basis will have statistical instances of infected individuals passing amongst the rest either knowingly or unknowingly spreading their sickness. Be sure not to touch your face in the crowd, try to keep your hands away from surfaces like rails and armrests where those who’ve contracted sickness may have left influenza germs. One way to get what you need to done with lowered instances of risk is to finish your appointments either just as a business opens, or just as it closes. Wherever you can encounter fewer numbers of people, or avoid the crowd, you’ll do yourself and your immune system–and your immediate acquaintances–a huge favor by evading avoidable infection areas.


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