If you have TB disease in the lungs or throat, you can spread your TB through the air when you cough, sneeze, talk, laugh or sing to other people. It is important for you to stay at home in isolation. This will stop the spread of TB and protect your family and friends. You will be in isolation precautions for a minimum of two weeks depending on how sick you are. You will need to stay at home in isolation until your public health nurse tells you that you are can no longer spread the disease to other people.

  • Young children and people with weak immune systems can get TB very easily.
  • Sleep in a room that is not shared with other people.
  • Open your windows to let out the TB germs.
  • When you cough or sneeze, cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve, then wash your hands.
  • You do not need to wear a mask at home with the people you live with, as long as there are no visitors present.
  • Do not invite visitors inside your home or visit other people.
  • Do not go to public places (for example work, school, libraries, places of worship, banks, community centres, restaurants, coffee shops, movies, grocery stores and shopping malls).
  • Do not ride on public transportation (for example buses, subways, trains, airplanes and boats)
  • If you need to buy food, ask a family member or friend for help or contact your public health nurse.
  • You can go for short walks outside. When you are outside, you do not need to wear a mask, but stay away from other people.
  • Wear a mask when you go to see your TB doctor or to get tests for TB. Speak to your public health nurse if you need transportation. Wear a mask if you take a taxi.
  • Tell your public health nurse if you have any other appointments before you go.
  • If you travel by ambulance, wear a mask and tell the people looking after you that you have TB.

The length of time for home isolation is different for each person. This depends on your TB test results and on how well you are tolerating your TB medications. It is important to take all your TB medications as instructed. This will kill the germs and cure your TB.

Your public health nurse will tell you when home isolation is no longer needed and when you may return to your regular activities.

This information is also available in the following languages. To request a copy, email us at targettb@toronto.ca or call 416-338-7600 and ask for the TB program.

  • አማርኛ / Amheric
  • العربية / Arabic
  • বাংলা / Bengali
  • 中文 / Chinese
  • فارسی / Farsi
  • Tagalog / Filipino
  • Français / French
  • ગુજરાતી / Gujara
  • हिन्दी / Hindi
  • Magyar nyelv / Hungarian
  • 한국어 / Korean
  • Português / Portuguese
  • ਪੰਜਾਬੀ / Punjabi
  • Romania / Romanian
  • русский / Russian
  • Español / Spanish
  • བོད་སྐད་ / Tibetan
  • தமிழ் / Tamil
  • ردو / Urdu
  • Tiếng Việt / Vietnamese

If you have any questions, please contact your healthcare provider or Toronto Public Health at 416-338-7600.