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When Can I Go Back to School If I Have the Flu?

I think I have the flu. How long should I stay home from school?
– Bret*

Staying home as soon as you notice flu symptoms is the best way to stop the flu from spreading. It's also best for your health: Resting might help you recover faster.

People who have any type of flu should stay home until at least 24 hours after their fever has gone away on its own (without the help of fever-reducing medicines). Of course, if you still don't feel better even after your fever is gone, you'll want to keep resting until you do.

If it seems like you're taking a long time to get well, or if you're having trouble breathing, call your doctor.

*Names have been changed to protect user privacy.

Date reviewed: September 2018

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