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How Do You Get Strep Throat?

Although you may be aware that strep throat is caused by bacteria, you may still find yourself wondering, "How do you get strep throat?"
This infection is typically spread through contact with infected throat mucus, nasal discharge, or saliva. This can happen in one of a couple of different ways:
  • When a person infected with group A streptococcus sneezes or coughs, and infected droplets spray into the air. The infected mucus can land in another person's nose, throat, or eyes and enter their body.
  • By touching a surface or object that has infectious fluids on it. If a person touches their mouth, nose, or eyes after touching something that has these fluids, the bacteria can be passed on to that person.
When someone becomes infected with group A streptococcus, they do not immediately have any signs or symptoms of strep throat; it takes about two to four days on average for symptoms to start.
(Click Strep Throat Transmission for more details on how people get strep throat. This article discusses how this throat infection is transmitted and how long the condition lasts.)
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