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Flu Transmission Facts

Flu Transmission Facts

Flu is contagious the day BEFORE you develop symptoms. See more flu facts in this list from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Did you know you could spread the flu virus a day before you develop symptoms? Get more flu info with this list compiled by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and make sure to see our Vaccine Q & A for more information on the benefits of getting vaccinated this flu season.

  • Flu is responsible for approximately 22 million missed school days each year.
  • Five to twenty percent of Americans get the flu every year, causing around 200,000 hospitalizations.
  • The flu virus can survive up to 72 hours on surfaces like doorknobs and desks. (As a preventive measure, Clorox recommends using Clorox® disinfecting products to help kill 99.9% of the flu virus* found throughout your house.)
  • Adults can spread the flu virus up to a day before developing symptoms and 3 to 7 days after symptoms start. Children can pass on the virus even longer.
  • People who have flu often feel some or all of these symptoms: fever or feeling feverish/chills, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, muscle or body aches, headaches, fatigue (tiredness) and some people may have vomiting and diarrhea, though this is more common in children than adults. It’s important to note that not everyone with the flu will have a fever.
  • Antibiotics are only designed to kill bacteria, so they can’t cure the flu virus. The best medicine is plenty of rest and a lot of liquids. And if your illness gets worse, be sure to see your doctor.
  • A recent study found a strain of the flu virus was present on 60% of common household items in homes with just one sick kid. Clorox® disinfecting products are designed to kill the cold and flu viruses* that many cleaners cannot.

Source: paraphrased from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention,

* Use as directed on hard, nonporous surfaces. See labels for organisms.