The new coronavirus caused the recent outbreak of COVID-19. What a lot of people do not know is that the new coronavirus is not the only one. Coronavirus refers to a family of viruses that affects both humans and animals.
These different types of viruses affect the respiratory system when they get into the body and have caused outbreaks such as the MiddleEast Respiratory Syndrome (MERS), as caused by the MERS-CoV, and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) as caused by the SARS-CoV.
In late 2019, a new coronavirus was discovered in Wuhan China, this new virus was called SARS-COV-2, and it led to the outbreak of a disease…
Like all other coronaviruses, the SARS-COV-2 attacks the respiratory system and cause symptoms such as difficulty in breathing and pneumonia. This article recognizes the signs of COVID-19 and how it is different from other illnesses. Should you notice any of these symptoms of COVID-19, call your doctor and wait for instructions on how to get tested.
Symptoms of covid-19
When you are infected with the SARS-COV-2, incubation can be from 2 days to 14 days, depending on the immune system of the patient. It is also important to note that not everyone infected will show symptoms. People like that are called asymptomatic patients and easily get others infected because they do not know they are infected due to their lack of symptoms. In cases of common symptoms, however, they include
Shortness of breath
Additional symptoms that show up after some time include the following
- Loss of taste and smell
- Repeated shaking
- Sore throat
- Runny or stuffy nose
- Muscle pain
Some symptoms become life-threatening in COVID-19. When a patient begins to show or experience these symptoms, they should get medical help immediately
- Shortness of breath
- Pain or pressure in the chest
- Bluish lips or face
According to observations, it has been noticed that the respiratory symptoms of patients become worse in the second week of infection, which is usually around the 8th day. Finally, it is only 1 in 5 people infected with the SARS-COV-2 that develop serious problems like pneumonia and respiratory failure.
Differences between covid-19 symptoms and cold symptoms
The virus responsible for the common cold is also a coronavirus, so it is not strange that there would be similarities in the symptoms of both the common cold and COVID-19. Symptoms of the common cold include the following
Runny or stuffy nose
To tell if you have the cold or COVID-19, study the symptoms. The first signs of a cold are usually sore throat and runny nose, and these are less common in COVID-19.
Differences between covid-19 symptoms and flu symptoms
Flu is a seasonal respiratory illness that shares a couple of similar symptoms with COVID-19. The difference between the flu and COVID-19 lies in the way their symptoms manifest. When you are sick with the flu, symptoms, manifest suddenly, but with COVID-19, it takes time and shows up gradually. Common symptoms of flu include
- Sore throat
- Body ache and pains
- Runny or stuffy nose
If you observe these symptoms, you will notice that they are very similar to the COVID-19 symptoms. Besides the similarities in symptoms, there are also some differences between COVID-19 and the flu that is worth considering
The flu affects more children than COVID-19 does
The flu has a shorter incubation period than COVID-19
People are more likely to develop serious complications and symptoms in COVID-19 than with the flu
There is currently no treatment for COVID-19; however, there are established and viable vaccines and antivirals available for the flu
Differences between covid-19 symptoms and hay fever
Unlike other diseases mentioned, hay fever is not caused by any virus or any coronavirus. It merely occurs as a result of exposure to allergens in the environment and is also called allergic rhinitis. The allergens that can cause hay fever and trigger respiratory symptoms include:
- Pet dander
The major trademark of hay fever is itching. Although it also has respiratory symptoms, they don’t include fever or shortness of breath. The main symptoms of hay fever include:
- Itching in eyes, nose and face
- Swollen eyelids
- Runny or stuffy nose
What to do if you think you have symptoms of covid-19
Suppose you think the signs and symptoms you have maybe as a result of infection with the SARS-COV-2. Follow the steps below and try not to panic.
Keep track of the symptoms
Bear in mind that if you are infected, the chances are that you can get worse in the second week. Monitor your symptoms for days. Also, note that not everyone infected will be severely affected enough to require hospitalisation. Bear this in mind as you keep track of your symptoms.
Contact your doctor
From the moment you begin to experience the symptoms, call to let your doctor know. It does not matter if they are mild or not, keeping them informed will make it easier to monitor you and prevent you from possibly infecting others
When you begin to notice symptoms, isolate yourself from anyone who lives with you. If possible, avoid sharing bathroom and bedrooms with them. Stay away from everyone until your infection has cleared completely.
Your doctor will help you by working with health authorities and CDC in evaluating your symptoms and finding out the best way to get you tested without infecting anyone else.
Get medical care
If your symptoms remain mild, you can stay at home until you recover completely. However, if your symptoms get worse, get medical help. Call your doctor first before you visit the hospital and always wear your protective gear such as face masks and gloves to prevent exposing others to the virus.
Risk factors associated with covid-19
Certain people are at an increased risk of being infected with the SARS-COV-2. Individuals such as those who have been
- In close contact with someone who has been confirmed to be infected with the SARS-COV-2
- In high-risk areas where COVID-19 is widespread
Also, there are certain groups of people that are at an increased risk of being infected with the SARS-COV-2. This is as a result of their age or underlying medical conditions. The groups of people include people who have:
- Kidney failure
- Sickle cell disease
- Type 2 diabetes
- Obesity: as in cases of people with Body Mass Index (BMI) of 30 or higher
- Serious heart diseases like coronary artery disease
- A weak immune system from solid organ transplant
- Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary disease
Staying protected from the new coronavirus
If you wish to protect yourself and those around you from the COVID-19, follow the steps below
Avoid sharing personal items
Even with the people you live with, you should not share personal items. If it does not expose you to the virus, it increases your chances of getting infected and spreading the virus.
Avoid touching your face
Avoid touching your face or parts of it like your eyes, nose and mouth. Besides transferring germs to those areas through unwashed hands, you can also make it easy for you to get infected through those areas.
Wash your hands
You should wash your hands thoroughly and all the time with soap and water. After touching surfaces, when you come in from outside and all the time, wash your hands thoroughly. If there is no soap or water, use a hand sanitiser with at least 60% alcohol.
Practice social distancing
Whenever you go out in public, maintain at least 6 feet distance between yourself and the nearest person. In your house as well, also keep a safe distance between you and people around.
Clean and disinfect surfaces
The SARS-COV-2 virus has been shown to survive on surfaces for as long as 72 hours. Cleaning and disinfecting surfaces will protect you from this virus. Pay special attention to high touch areas like tabletops, counters and even your phones.
Wear protective gear
Always wear your face masks and gloves when you go out in public. They protect you from respiratory droplets that are released when people cough, sneeze or speak.
Cover your nose and mouth when you sneeze
When sneezing or coughing, use a disposable tissue to cover your nose and mouth. Don’t forget to dispose of them afterwards and wash your hands thoroughly.
Stay at home if you are sick
Even if you are not infected with the SARS-COV-2, stay indoors when you are sick and protect others from catching what made you sick in the first place.
News and information about COVID-19 are constantly being updated by the CDC and the World Health Organisation (WHO). Always stay up to date with this information.
The new coronavirus officially known as SARS-COV-2 led to the outbreak of the COVID-19. Anyone who is infected or experiences symptoms can get tested in laboratory or hospitals. Be sure to inform your doctor if you experience any symptoms that are strange or that you know nothing about.
Here at STD Check Clinic in London, we provide COVID-19 Pcr test in London. Contact us today if you wish to get tested for COVID-19.