Is Pneumonia Contagious?

If you have ever had pneumonia or come into contact with someone who does, you may have asked the question “is pneumonia contagious?” To answer that question, it is helpful to understand what pneumonia is, and what causes it.

Pneumonia is an infection of the lungs, caused by germs such as bacteria, viruses, and sometimes fungi. The infection in your lungs causes them to become inflamed, and may fill up with fluid or pus. This often causes one of the most common symptoms associated with pneumonia, cough. So, is pneumonia contagious?

Pneumonia Is Not Contagious, But Viruses and Bacteria Are

The most simple answer to the question “is pneumonia infectious?” is no. Pneumonia, in itself, is not contagious, but the germs that cause it often are. Germs and viruses that cause the flu, common cold, or bacterial infections are contagious and can lead to pneumonia.

Who is most likely to get pneumonia?

  • People with weakened immune system due to medications

  • People with pre-existing medical conditions

  • Children under the age of 2

  • Adults over the age of 65

Is Pneumonia Contagious?Prevent pneumonia and the spread of other contagious infections by:

  • Avoiding contact with people who have a virus or bacterial infection (ie. a cold or the flu).

  • Washing your hands frequently.

  • Not Smoking. Smoking weakens your lungs making you more susceptible to infection.

  • Strengthening your immune system by maintaining a healthy diet, exercising, and getting enough rest.

Pneumonia is one of the most common infections in the United States and is most often easily treated. In some cases pneumonia can become severe and requires immediate medical attention.

If you are experiencing symptoms and think you may have pneumonia, visit one of our FastMed Urgent Care walk-in clinicsWe have over 75 locations in North Carolina and Arizona. Our staff of trained professionals can help you answer questions like, “Is viral pneumonia contagious?” and any other medical concerns you may have.

The content presented on this page is not intended to diagnose health problems or take the place of professional medical care.