Flu Incubation Period: Influenza

Many people are concerned about the warnings of the Influenza season being very severe. While many chose to take the flu vaccine, others did not. Are we truly protected from flu and the agonizing symptoms that come along with it? Well, according to the experts (flu.gov) if you take the flu vaccine, you will be 60% less likely to need follow-up care for the flu and less likely to exhibit any secondary complications. It is advised to take the flu vaccine as soon as it comes available in your area, because it takes around two weeks to become fully effective against the influenza virus A, B, and C. Although, you may still have some signs and symptoms of the flu, after the injection, they will not be as severe.


Incubation Period


If you have begun exhibiting signs and symptoms of the flu or you have been diagnosed with it before, you are probably concerned, with how long the incubation period is. The influenza virus can make one feel extremely ill, but most of the symptoms are not life threatening, but the secondary complications can potentially be very serious, if not fatal in some individuals.

The incubation period, which is the time, when the individual in infected with the influenza virus and the onset of the symptoms. At the time of becoming infected with the virus, you are most likely not aware that you have been infected, but when the first symptoms begin to appear, you know that you have the influenza virus.

The incubation period is normally 1-4 days (CDC), but the average being around two days. The duration of the flu virus is between 5-7 days for adults, but in children, they may exhibit symptoms for the entire 7 days. The infectious period normally begins 1 day, before the symptoms begin to appear. This is the important time to stay indoors and isolate your self from coming into contact with others, in hopes of preventing the spread of the virus.



There is no true treatment for the influenza virus, because the virus takes over and begins to control the normal, living cells, the utilize them to multiply. This makes them safe from the powers of medications. However, you can still combat the signs and symptoms of the flu, with over the counter analgesics and antipyretics such as Tylenol or ibuprofen.

If you begin to experience more serious signs including cyanosis (blue coloring of the lips or skin), dyspnea (shortness of breath), high fever accompanied by a rash, unconsciousness, and inability to maintain normal fluid volumes, you should seek emergency care.