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COVID-19, cold, allergies and the flu: What are the differences?

COVID-19, chilly, allergy symptoms and the flu: What are the discrepancies?

COVID-19, the typical chilly, seasonal allergy symptoms and the flu have many very similar signals and signs or symptoms. Locate out about some of the important discrepancies between these ailments.

By Mayo Clinic Employees

If you have signals or signs or symptoms of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), it is really important that you contact your health practitioner or clinic correct away for medical advice. But COVID-19, the typical chilly, seasonal allergy symptoms and the flu (influenza) lead to many very similar signs or symptoms. So how can you tell if you have COVID-19? Fully grasp the discrepancies in signs or symptoms that these ailments lead to, as very well as how these ailments distribute, are treated and can be prevented.

What is COVID-19 (coronavirus), how does it distribute, and how is it treated?

COVID-19 is a contagious respiratory disease induced by infection with the virus SARS-CoV-2. It normally spreads between persons who are in close contact (within just 6 toes, or 2 meters). The virus spreads by means of respiratory droplets produced when anyone breathes, coughs, sneezes, talks or sings. These droplets can land in the mouth or nose of anyone close by or be inhaled. The virus can also distribute if a human being touches a surface area or object with the virus on it and then touches his or her mouth, nose or eyes, despite the fact that this isn’t regarded as to be a most important way it spreads.

The most typical signs or symptoms of COVID-19 are a fever, cough and tiredness. But there are many other attainable signals and signs or symptoms.

At present, only 1 antiviral drug, termed remdesivir, is authorised to take care of COVID-19. Some drugs may well assist lessen the severity of COVID-19. The U.S. Foodstuff and Drug Administration has specified comprehensive authorization to 1 COVID-19 vaccine and emergency use authorization to a handful of COVID-19 vaccines.

What’s the variation between COVID-19 and the typical chilly?

Both of those COVID-19 and the typical chilly are induced by viruses. COVID-19 is induced by SARS-CoV-2, even though the typical chilly is most generally induced by rhinoviruses. These viruses distribute in very similar ways and lead to many of the same signals and signs or symptoms. However, there are a couple discrepancies.

Symptom verify: Is it COVID-19 or a chilly?

Symptom or signal COVID-19 Cold
Cough Typically (dry) Typically
Muscle mass aches Typically At times
Tiredness Typically At times
Sneezing Hardly ever At times
Sore throat Typically Typically
Runny or stuffy nose Typically Typically
Fever Typically At times
Diarrhea At times Never ever
Nausea or vomiting At times Never ever
New loss of style or scent Typically (early — generally with out a runny or stuffy nose) At times (especially with a stuffy nose)

Whilst COVID-19 signs or symptoms typically seem two to 14 times immediately after exposure to SARS-CoV-2, signs or symptoms of a typical chilly normally seem 1 to a few times immediately after exposure to a chilly-resulting in virus.

You can find no treatment for the typical chilly. Cure may well consist of suffering relievers and over-the-counter chilly remedies, such as decongestants. Compared with COVID-19, a chilly is normally harmless. Most persons get better from a typical chilly in a few to 10 times, despite the fact that some colds may well final as lengthy as two or a few months.

What’s the variation between COVID-19 and seasonal allergy symptoms?

Compared with COVID-19, seasonal allergy symptoms usually are not induced by a virus. Seasonal allergy symptoms are immune technique responses triggered by exposure to allergens, such as seasonal tree or grass pollens.

COVID-19 and seasonal allergy symptoms lead to many of the same signals and signs or symptoms. However, there are some discrepancies.

Symptom verify: Is it COVID-19 or seasonal allergy symptoms?

Symptom or signal COVID-19 Allergy
Cough Typically (dry) At times
Fever Typically Never ever
Muscle mass aches Typically Never ever
Tiredness Typically At times
Itchy nose, eyes, mouth or inner ear Never ever Typically
Sneezing Hardly ever Typically
Sore throat Typically Hardly ever
Runny or stuffy nose Typically Typically
Pink eye (conjunctivitis) At times At times
Nausea or vomiting At times Never ever
Diarrhea At times Never ever
New loss of style or scent Typically (early — generally with out a runny or stuffy nose) At times

Also, even though COVID-19 can lead to shortness of breath or problem respiratory, seasonal allergy symptoms will not normally lead to these signs or symptoms until you have a respiratory problem such as bronchial asthma that can be triggered by pollen exposure.

Cure of seasonal allergy symptoms may well consist of over-the-counter or prescription antihistamines, nasal steroid sprays and decongestants, and avoidance of exposure to allergens where attainable. Seasonal allergy symptoms may well final many months.

What is actually the variation between COVID-19 and the flu?

COVID-19 and the flu are each contagious respiratory ailments induced by viruses. COVID-19 is induced by the SARS-CoV-2 virus, even though the flu is induced by influenza A and B viruses. These viruses distribute in very similar ways.

COVID-19 and the flu lead to very similar signs or symptoms. The ailments can also lead to no signs or symptoms or gentle or critical signs or symptoms. Due to the fact of the similarities, it can be challenging to diagnose which problem you have based on signs or symptoms by yourself. Testing may well be accomplished to see if you have COVID-19 or the flu. You can also have each ailments at the same time. However, there are some discrepancies.

Symptom verify: Is it COVID-19 or the flu?

Symptom or signal COVID-19 Flu
Cough Typically (dry) Typically
Muscle mass aches Typically Typically
Tiredness Typically Typically
Sore throat Typically Typically
Runny or stuffy nose Typically Typically
Fever Typically Typically — not usually
Nausea or vomiting At times At times (extra typical in children)
Diarrhea At times At times (extra typical in children)
Shortness of breath or problem respiratory Typically Typically
New loss of style or scent Typically (early — generally with out a runny or stuffy nose) Hardly ever

COVID-19 signs or symptoms typically seem two to 14 times immediately after exposure to SARS-CoV-2. Flu signs or symptoms normally seem about 1 to 4 times immediately after exposure to an influenza virus.

COVID-19 can lead to extra-major ailments in some persons than the flu. Also, COVID-19 can lead to distinctive difficulties than the flu, such as blood clots and multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children.

Whilst there is only 1 antiviral treatment method for COVID-19, there are many antiviral drugs that can be utilized to take care of the flu. Also, you can get an annual flu vaccine to assist lessen your hazard of the flu. The flu vaccine can also lessen the severity of the flu and the hazard of major difficulties. The vaccine can be specified as a shot or as a nasal spray.

 

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How can you avoid getting COVID-19, a chilly and the flu?

When attainable, get a COVID-19 vaccine. If you’re entirely vaccinated, you can extra safely return to doing routines you may possibly not have been in a position to do for the reason that of the pandemic. However, if you are in an region with a high selection of new COVID-19 conditions, the CDC endorses putting on a mask indoors in general public and outdoor in crowded parts or when you are in close contact with persons who are not entirely vaccinated.

If you haven’t experienced a COVID-19 vaccine, you can lessen your hazard of infection from the viruses that lead to COVID-19, colds and the flu by subsequent many common precautions. Investigate indicates that subsequent these measures, such as social distancing and putting on a experience mask, may possibly have assisted shorten the size of the flu time and lessened the selection of persons afflicted in the 2019-2020 flu time.

Regular precautions to lessen your hazard of COVID-19, colds and the flu consist of:

  • Preventing close contact (within just 6 toes, or 2 meters) with any person outdoors your residence, especially if you have a higher hazard of major illness
  • Carrying a experience mask in indoor general public spaces
  • If you are in an region with a high selection of new COVID-19 conditions, putting on a mask outdoor in crowded parts or when you are in close contact with some others who are not entirely vaccinated
  • Washing your palms generally with cleaning soap and drinking water for at the very least 20 seconds, or utilizing an liquor-based hand sanitizer that contains at the very least 60% liquor
  • Preventing crowded indoor spaces
  • Covering your mouth and nose with your elbow or a tissue when you cough or sneeze
  • Preventing touching your eyes, nose and mouth
  • Cleaning and disinfecting high-touch surfaces, such as doorknobs, light-weight switches, electronics and counters, day by day

Also, get an annual flu vaccine.

How can you avoid allergy symptoms?

The finest way to avoid seasonal allergy symptoms is to avoid your regarded triggers. If you’re allergic to pollen, stay inside of with home windows and doorways shut when pollen is high.

Carrying a fabric experience mask also may possibly provide some defense against seasonal allergy symptoms. Masks can avoid you from inhaling some more substantial pollen particles. However, lesser pollen particles will continue to be in a position to get by means of a mask. It is also important to clean your mask immediately after every single use given that a mask may possibly have pollen particles.

If you assume you may possibly have signals or signs or symptoms of COVID-19, discuss to your health practitioner. Bear in mind, using preventive measures can assist you stay nutritious.

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