Flu Germs are Spread from Person to Person
This website is archived for historical purposes and is no longer being maintained or updated. For updated information on the current flu season, see the CDC Seasonal Flu website.
December 5, 2009, 6:00 AM ET
The flu is thought to spread mostly from person to person through coughs and sneezes of people who are sick with the flu.
Flu viruses may also survive for a few hours on surfaces such as doorknobs, phones, and cups. You may also get the flu if you touch these surfaces and then touch your eyes, mouth, or nose before washing your hands.
How to keep yourself and others healthy during flu season
- Talk to your doctor about whether you need both seasonal and H1N1 flu vaccines.
- Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after you cough or sneeze. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub.
- Stay away from sick people as much as possible.
Get email updates
To receive weekly email updates about this site, enter your email address:
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
1600 Clifton Rd
Atlanta, GA 30333
TTY: (888) 232-6348
- Contact CDC-INFO