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Recovery Time for the Flu

By Elizabeth Streeter ; Updated July 27, 2017

The flu is a term for a group of influenza viruses that infect the respiratory system. Once your system is infected, recovery time from the illness varies.


The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that between 5 percent and 20 percent of Americans will catch the flu each year.


Symptoms of the flu include high fever, fatigue, headaches, sore throats, body aches and, in children, stomach problems.

Recovery Time

The fever and muscle pain associated with the flu alleviates within three to five days. The fatigue, however, can last longer than two weeks, notes the University of Maryland Medical Center.


If you see a physician within two days after developing influenza symptoms, he may prescribe antiviral drugs such as zanamivir (Relenza) or oseltamivir (Tamiflu). These medicines can shorten recovery time.


Prevent dehydration by drinking plenty of water and juice. Also, give your immune system a boost by getting adequate rest and sleep, says MayoClinic.com.


Contact your health-care provider immediately if you have problems breathing, develop chest pain, become confused or experience dizziness.

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