Strep Throat | Overview


What is strep throat?

Strep throat is an infection caused by bacteria. It is called "strep" because the bacteria that causes the infection is called streptococcus.

Can other people catch my strep throat?

Yes. You can pass the strep infection to other people until you have been treated with an antibiotic for 1 to 3 days. Children who have strep throat should not go back to school or day care until their fever has gone away and they have taken an antibiotic for at least 24 hours.

You can also prevent the spread of strep throat by frequently washing your hands, covering your mouth when you cough or sneeze and avoiding sharing food utensils (such as drinking glasses) while you are sick.

Can people get strep throat from their pets?

This could happen, but it is very rare.


Management of Group A Beta-Hemolytic Streptococcal Pharyngitis by CS Hayes, MD, MHA; H Williamson, Jr, MD, MSPH (American Family Physician April 15, 2001,

Written by editorial staff

Reviewed/Updated: 05/14
Created: 09/00