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How Long Does Strep Throat Last?

Strep throat is a type of throat infection caused by group A streptococcus bacteria. If you have symptoms of this infection, you may be wondering things like, "How long does strep throat last?" and "When will I start feeling better?"
Once infected with the bacteria, a person who goes untreated can pass the infection to others for up to four weeks, even if they don't have symptoms. However, if they do receive treatment with antibiotics, after 24 hours, the person will no longer spread the bacteria to others. Children can return to school and adults to work after 24 hours of taking antibiotics. After 24 hours, a person is no longer contagious.
During the first 24 hours, there should also be a drop in temperature. Other symptoms will start to improve around day two or three of treatment. Even if you are feeling better, make sure not to stop the treatment too early or skip a dose, as this could allow the bacteria to become resistant to the medication.
(Click Strep Throat Treatment for more details on how long strep throat lasts. This article discusses why it is important to seek treatment and describes several treatment options that are available.)
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