How Do You Tell If You Have A Viral Or Bacterial Infection?

How long does a viral infection last?

The effects will last as long as the virus affects the body.

Most viral infections last from several days to 2 weeks.

Mononucleosis may last longer.

Virus infections can be more serious for older adults..

How do I know if my cough is viral or bacterial?

Small amounts of white mucus may be coughed up if the bronchitis is viral. If the color of the mucus changes to green or yellow, it may be a sign that a bacterial infection has also set in. The cough is usually the last symptom to clear up and may last for weeks.

Can you have the flu and a bacterial infection at the same time?

This so-called antiviral state doesn’t protect you against bacterial infections though. A lot of the deaths from flu are actually due to secondary bacterial pneumonia infections that can take hold while your immune system is busy fighting the flu.

Can a bacterial infection go away without antibiotics?

Even without antibiotics, most people can fight off a bacterial infection, especially if symptoms are mild. About 70 percent of the time, symptoms of acute bacterial sinus infections go away within two weeks without antibiotics.

What illnesses do you need antibiotics for?

Chest Cold (Acute Bronchitis)Common Cold.Ear Infection.Flu (Influenza)Sinus Infection (Sinusitis)Skin Infections.Sore Throat.Urinary Tract Infection.

How do you know if it’s bacterial or viral infection?

Diagnosis of Bacterial and Viral Infections But your doctor may be able to determine the cause by listening to your medical history and doing a physical exam. If necessary, they also can order a blood or urine test to help confirm a diagnosis, or a “culture test” of tissue to identify bacteria or viruses.

Can viral infections be cured?

For most viral infections, treatments can only help with symptoms while you wait for your immune system to fight off the virus. Antibiotics do not work for viral infections. There are antiviral medicines to treat some viral infections. Vaccines can help prevent you from getting many viral diseases.

How long is the flu contagious?

When Flu Spreads People with flu are most contagious in the first three to four days after their illness begins. Most healthy adults may be able to infect others beginning 1 day before symptoms develop and up to 5 to 7 days after becoming sick.

Can I get antibiotics without seeing a doctor?

About half of those who got antibiotics without seeing a doctor did have other medical bills, often for recent laboratory or home health services, which may have led doctors to prescribe antibiotics, authors of the new study said.

What are the symptoms of a viral infection?

Symptoms of viral infectionsFever.Muscle ache.Cough.Sore throat.Headache.

How do you know if flu is viral or bacterial?

One easy way to get an idea if a viral infection is now bacterial is to monitor symptom changes. If symptoms persist for more than 10-14 days, the fever is higher than that of a viral fever and the fever is getting worse before it’s getting better, it may have gone bacterial.

How do I know if I need antibiotics?

Your doctor may prescribe antibiotics if the symptoms are severe and include high fever along with nasal drainage and a productive cough. Antibiotics may also be necessary if you feel better after a few days and then your symptoms return or if the infection lasts more than a week.

Can you have a virus and bacterial infection at the same time?

Illnesses have a tendency to clump together. An attack of the flu can bring on bacterial lung infections; in the USA almost half of all cases of bacterial sepsis occur following viral infections in the lungs.

What happens if you take an antibiotic for a viral infection?

Antibiotics won’t treat viral infections because they can’t kill viruses. You’ll get better when the viral infection has run its course. Common illnesses caused by bacteria are urinary tract infections, strep throat, and some pneumonia.

What should I eat if I have a viral infection?

Foods to eatBroth. Whether you prefer chicken, beef, or vegetable, broth is one of the best things you can eat when you have the flu. … Chicken soup. Chicken soup combines the benefits of broth along with additional ingredients. … Garlic. … Yogurt. … Vitamin C–containing fruits. … Leafy greens. … Broccoli. … Oatmeal.More items…•