How Long Is a Cold Contagious?


Quick Answer

WebMD states that people are contagious for the first three days that they have cold symptoms. However, people may be contagious as long as they have any symptoms of a cold, according to Healthline. Everyday Health states that people may even be contagious for several days after their symptoms resolve.

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Full Answer

Most cold symptoms appear one to three days after exposure to a cold-causing virus, according to Everyday Health. Colds usually have a slow onset, with only mild symptoms at first. The symptoms usually peak in intensity around four days after onset of symptoms. They start to get better by around day seven after onset of symptoms.

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