How Long Does the Flu Last? & Who is in the High-Risk Category?
How Long Does the Flu Last – The winter season comes with the risk of several viruses, including flu. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have already started recommending Americans get themselves vaccinated with flu shots as early as possible.
Similar to the COVID-19 vaccine, flu shots are also not 100% capable of preventing the infection. The risk of flu infection is always going to be there Regardless of your vaccination status. The best way to prevent the infection is by following the COVID protocol and the right knowledge regarding the virus.
Yes, the COVID protocol and the right knowledge together can help you prevent the infection as much as possible. That is what today we are going to discuss with you. We will also take a look at how long the flu lasts and what you can do to prevent it effectively.
The Time Frame of the Infection of the Flu
The duration of flu infection can be slightly different in every person, depending on their previous medical history. The flu duration is going to be shorter in healthy adults, while it can be a little bit longer in people who are already struggling with chronic conditions.
In Healthy adults and kids, the flu is going to last around three to seven days, as per the Centers for Disease control and prevention.
This is the time frame of general symptoms. Apart from that, symptoms like Weakness and fatigue can stay in your system for a longer period.
Usually, most people get better from the infectious flu within the given Time frame, but there is a category of people who are at high risk of developing severe complications, and they should not ignore the infection of flu under any circumstances.
- Sinus Infections
- Ear Infections
At the same time, people who are already struggling with any chronic condition should be staying cautious as the flu is known to worsen the existing medical conditions.
For example, people who are struggling with asthma or any other respiratory disease should be staying very careful during the infection.
The Whole Duration of Flu Infection
If you are worried about the flu infection, then take a look at the whole duration of the disease, as it will help you clear out all the doubts regarding the timeline of the virus.
Once you have been exposed to the influenza virus, it may take one to four days, depending on your immunity, to develop symptoms associated with the virus. We will talk about all the symptoms associated with influenza In the below-given sections.
The time frame between you getting exposed to a virus and developing symptoms is known as the incubation period. There might be some people who can experience some symptoms associated with influenza during this time, including cold.
Kindly remember once you have been exposed to the virus, you will become contagious one day before developing the symptoms and five to seven days after becoming ill.
After that, once you have started developing symptoms associated with a flu infection, you can get better within five to seven days.
Who is in the High-Risk Category?
Before we move ahead, let’s discuss the high-risk category of developing severe complications after getting infected with the general flu.
If you fall in any of the below-given categories, then you should call your healthcare provider as early as you get infected with the flu. Kindly do not underestimate the infection of the flu, as per the CDC.
- Everyone above the age of 65 is in the high-risk category.
- Everyone below the age of five is also in a similar risk category.
- All American Indian or Alaska native descents are also much more vulnerable to developing severe complications.
- Women who are pregnant or who just delivered a baby.
- Obese people or people with a BMI of 40 are also in the high-risk category of developing severe complications.
- People who are already struggling with chronic conditions, including cancer and HIV, or also in a similar category.
- People who have liver or kidney disorders are also in a similar category.
Apart from that, there can be several other categories that are also in the high-risk category. If you believe you are also in the high-risk category, then we recommend you consult with your healthcare provider anytime you want.
Symptoms of Flu Infection
Once you have started learning about the whole time frame of flu infection, it is also important for you to know more about the symptoms of the infection.
All the below-given symptoms associated with the flu infection have been recognized by the Centers for Disease Control and prevention of the United States.
- Low-grade fever
- Sore throat
- Stuffy nose
- Body pain
- Muscle pain
Apart from the above-given symptoms, some people might also experience symptoms associated with digestive issues. As a precautionary measure, you should isolate yourself as early as you find out about your flu infection.
You can transmit the flu to other family members by staying in the same house. Influenza virus can live on non-living things for 24 or more hours, depending on the material. You must make sure that you are following COVID protocol to prevent infection in your family.
When Should You Call Your Doctor for a Flu Infection?
Most people won’t even require any medicine or medical assistance to recover from the symptoms of the flu, as per the Centers for Disease control and prevention.
That is why a huge number of people get confused regarding the treatment of flu infection. The Centers for Disease Control and prevention do not bar anyone from consulting their healthcare provider regarding flu infection.
Everyone in the country is completely free to consult with their healthcare provider anytime they want. The Centers for Disease Control and prevention request everyone in the above-given higher-risk category call their healthcare provider right away to learn more about flu infection and treatment options.
- If you have been experiencing symptoms associated with the flu infection for more than a year, you should call your healthcare provider right away.
- If you are not feeling better even after two to four days of your infection, then you should call your healthcare provider.
- Flu infection is also known to cause breathing problems in some individuals. If you are one of those, then do not forget to call your healthcare provider right away.
- If you are experiencing chest pain, dizziness, or confusion, then you should call your healthcare provider right away.
It is also true that most people won’t even require any medicine or medical assistance to recover from these symptoms, But you should not ignore the infection under any circumstances.
Treatment of Flu Infection
Before we completely wrap this session up, let’s take a quick look at all the treatment options available for the flu infection.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggest everyone who has been infected with the flu infection to drink plenty of fluids and get as much rest as possible. At the same time, you can also take some over-the-counter pain and fever medications to reduce the intensity of both symptoms.
Prevention is the best medicine.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggest everyone prevent flu infection as much as possible in the first place. The United States did not record many cases of flu in the last two flu seasons.
The primary reason behind the low number of flu cases was the COVID protocol. A lot of people were following COVID protocol, and it is also known to be effective against several viruses, including influenza.
You can prevent flu infection this season also using the previous COVID protocol. First of all, you should make sure that you are not visiting any public places without using a high-quality face mask.
At the same time, you can also use social distancing and hand sanitizer to keep yourself away from viruses as much as possible. Flu shots are another effective way to prevent infection in the first place. We also recommend everyone follow the above-given guidelines to prevent the infection of viruses as much as possible.
How long does the flu last once you get infected with the virus?
Most healthy people will recover from the infection of the flu within three to five days Once they start developing symptoms. At the same time, it can take around 7 to 10 days to fully recover from the infection. The whole timeline of flu infection depends on the person and their previous medical history.