The main warning signs of COVID-19, the disease caused by the new coronavirus, are fever, fatigue, and a dry cough. Sometimes, it also causes cold-like symptoms like a runny nose. During allergy season, it may be hard to tell the difference between COVID-19 and allergies. Allergy symptoms happen partly because of inflammation. That’s caused by your body overreacting to things like pollen or mold. Common signs of allergies include:
- Runny nose
- Dry, tickly cough
- Itchy or watery eyes
People sometimes call allergies “hay fever,” but they don’t give you a fever.
Signs of COVID-19 include:
- Dry cough
- Trouble breathing
- Body aches
- Very sore throat
- Fatigue that comes on quickly
- Gastrointestinal problems like nausea or diarrhea
If you have any of these, especially a fever, call your doctor. If you get allergies every year, watch for symptoms that are different from what you’ve had before.
Severe allergies can make you can feel tightness in your chest and shortness of breath, especially if you have asthma, too. But these can also be serious symptoms of COVID-19. If you aren’t sure or if you haven’t been diagnosed with asthma, call your doctor or 911 right away.
Can You Have Allergies and Coronavirus?
You can have allergies and a viral infection at the same time. If you have classic allergy signs like itchy eyes and a runny nose along with COVID-19 symptoms like fatigue and a fever, call your doctor.
Allergies Versus Coronavirus (COVID-19)
Coughing and Sneezing Droplets
Travel Farther Than We Thought Possible
Whether we have allergies, versus Coronavirus, we sneeze, cough, talk, yell, and sing. Recent research shows that droplets from our noses and mouths can travel as far as 13 feet, and they do hang in the air for some time after being ejected. Thus, it is highly advisable to wear face masks to avoid transmitting whatever our germs are to others who are close by. (Selfishly, I’m including a few examples from the over 300 images in my Nancy’s Novelty Collections On Pixels Products for you. Here is a link to see all the facemasks (which can be mixed and matched with other products, like clothing, mugs, tote bags, yoga mats, home decor, and more.
WebMd states that coronavirus does not cause sneezing. But, it cautions that – regardless of what caused the sneeze – when you do sneeze, please cover both your nose and mouth with a tissue and dispose of that tissue in a covered container immediately. Then, Wash your hands right away. Disinfect the container each time you empty the trash. Why is that important? Because we get infected by the coronavirus in some of the same ways we get infected with germs from a cold.
How You Get Infected
WebMD says, “The main way colds get passed around is when someone who’s sick coughs or sneezes. Little droplets with germs land on places like doorknobs, telephones, and computer keyboards. Or the sick person coughs or sneezes into their hands and then touches those objects. Then you come along, happy and healthy, and touch that spot. Next, without even realizing it, you might touch your nose and mouth. Voila! In an instant you’re infected.”
Protect Yourself While Shopping
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention give the following guidelines.
- Stay at least 6 feet away from others while shopping and in lines.
- Cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face covering when you have to go out in public.
- When you do have to visit in person, go during hours when fewer people will be there (for example, early morning or late night).
- If you are at higher risk for severe illness, find out if the store has special hours for people at higher risk. If they do, try to shop during those hours. People at higher risk for severe illness include adults 65 or older and people of any age who have serious underlying medical conditions.
- Disinfect the shopping cart, use disinfecting wipes if available.
- Do not touch your eyes, nose, or mouth.
- If possible, use touchless payment (pay without touching money, a card, or a keypad). If you must handle money, a card, or use a keypad, use hand sanitizer right after paying.
Cleaning and Disinfecting Grocery Bags and Packaging
The latest research indicates coronavirus can live on plastic and metal surfaces for 3 days and on cardboard for one day. Thus, I remind you about the ways in which you can disinfect groceries that others have handled through this updated video by Dr. Jeffrey Van Wingen.
I hope you experience nothing more severe than season allergies. Let’s all do our best to save ourselves and others in our patch. Be Blessed and Have a Great Day!
Get Well, Stay Well, and Live Well
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