Not Sure If You Have COVID-19? Here’s How To Tell

Not Sure If You Have COVID-19? Here’s How To Tell

With an increasing number of recent coronavirus cases in the United States, panic has set in once again for most Americans. The constant worry and stress about catching COVID-19 can make you panic after experiencing the subtlest tickle in your throat or nasal drip. Since COVID-19, the illness caused by the novel coronavirus, can be life threatening, this fear is understandable.

According to scientific research and testing statistics, most people who contract COVID-19 experience a mild version with little to no symptoms. What makes coronavirus tricky to self-diagnose is the fact that many symptoms overlap with symptoms of the common cold, flu, and allergies. If you have a runny nose or itchy eyes, you may not have COVID-19. If you have a cough and fever accompanied by fatigue, you may have COVID-19. Take a gander at the chart below to find out the difference between COVID-19 symptoms and related symptoms of other conditions.

Key Symptoms Of COVID-19

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and World Health Organization (WHO) have put together a list of 11 primary symptoms of COVID-19. It’s also possible for people who become infected to remain asymptomatic. The primary symptoms are as follows:

  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fever or chills
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Fatigue
  • Congestion
  • Sore throat
  • Diarrhea
  • Headache
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Nausea or vomiting

COVID-19 Compared To Other Common Conditions

SymptomCOVID-19Common ColdFluAllergies
Dry CoughCommonMildCommonSometimes
Loss of smell and tasteSometimesCommonCommonCommon
Shortness of breathSometimesXXCommon
Muscle and body achesSometimesMildCommonX
Sore throatSometimesCommonSometimesX
Diarrhea and vomitingSometimesXSometimesX
Runny noseRareCommonSometimesCommon
Chills or repeated shaking  Sometimes  RareCommonX
Swollen toesRareXXX

What If You’re Sneezing?

According to health experts, you probably don’t have COVID-19 if you are sneezing. Runny nose and sneezing are more closely related to colds or allergies. Research highlights that only 4.8% of coronavirus cases experience congestion. The WHO report of 56,000 Chinese patients found that 87.9% of cases included fever, 67.7% of cases had dry cough, and 38.1% of cases had fatigue.

Despite the overlap of symptoms, COVID-19 is not the flu, common cold, or allergies. Ultimately, the only way to confirm whether or not you have COVID-19 is to take a test. Most cities offer free testing in the form or nasal or throat swabs. It is important that you should only go get tested if you really feel that you have a combination of COVID-19 symptoms.

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