- Diseases, Disorders & Conditions
How Long is the Swine Flu Incubation Period?
I visited Mexico right around the time of the first swine flu cases, so I did a lot of research about the swine flu incubation period after I returned home. I figured other people might be wondering the same thing, so here's what I've found:
Swine Flu Incubation Period
In general, the incubation period for the influenza virus (all types of flu) is 2 days, but can range from 1 to 5 days. In most US cases, the incubation period for swine flu seems to range from 2 to 7 days.
Obviously, the exact swine flu incubation period is still disputed. It would be wise to keep a close eye on symptoms for about a week, and up to 10 days to be safe.
Swine Flu Symptoms
Symptoms for the swine flu are similar to regular flu: fever, cough,
sore throat, body aches, headache, chills, and fatigue. Some people have
reported diarrhea and vomiting. See the CDC for more information.
Swine Flu Locations and Dates
The swine flu outbreak began in La Gloria, Mexico on March 9, 2009. Starting around April 13, more cases were reported in Mexico, most of them in Mexico City. Students from New York caught the swine flu in Cancun,
while on spring break between April 9 and 20. There have been confirmed
cases in most countries.
This map is reguarly updated with confirmed swine flu cases from around the world.
How Does Swine Flu Spread?
Swine flu spreads like regular flu: from an infected person through coughing or sneezing. The virus can live on surfaces for a short while, so you can catch it by touching something an infected person touched and then touching your nose, mouth, or eyes. (See the CDC for more information.)
Take the same precautions as you would with regular flu: wash hands regularly, use hand sanitizer, and don't touch your nose, mouth, or eyes unless your hands are really clean. If the flu spreads, you may want to wear a mouth guard to protect against inhaling germs. Look for an "N95" mask, which is designed to keep out germs and viruses.
Swine Flu Vaccine
The 2010-11 seasonal flu vaccine will protect against 3 strains of flu -- including swine flu. If you're wondering about whether or not to get the swine flu vaccine you can visit my other hub to learn more about the vaccine, where to get it, who should get it, and if it's safe.