What To Do If You Fear You Have A Delta Infection
Simply put, Delta is more dangerous. “The spike proteins stick out from the surface of the virus particle and help it latch onto and enter our cells. Any mutation that helps the virus do that more efficiently is going to drive a virus that can transmit from one person to the next better,” says Professor Wendy Barclay, Head of the Department of Infectious Disease at Imperial College London.
If any of these symptoms sound familiar, get a COVID test ASAP. Doctors prefer the “gold standard” PCR test but are also recommending rapid tests and at-home kits, which you will start to find more frequently in drugstores. Otherwise, follow the public health fundamentals and help end this pandemic, and don’t visit any of these 35 Places You’re Most Likely to Catch COVID.
Eat This, Not That!
Helpful Tips To Relieve Side Effects
Talk to your doctor about taking over-the-counter medicine, such as ibuprofen, acetaminophen, aspirin, or antihistamines, for any pain and discomfort you may experience after getting vaccinated. You can take these medications to relieve post-vaccination side effects if you have no other medical reasons that prevent you from taking these medications normally.
It is not recommended you take these medicines before vaccination for the purpose of trying to prevent side effects.
Can You Have Covid
COVID-19 can occur without fever. Some people may only experience cough or shortness of breath, while others develop symptoms that resemble a cold, such as a runny nose and sore throat.
Research suggests that a significant number of people with COVID-19 have no symptoms at all. Estimates vary, but one 2020 review in Annals of Internal Medicine suggests that 4045% of cases occur without symptoms.
People with symptoms that could indicate the presence of COVID-19 must take precautions to prevent the spread of SARS-CoV-2.
The CDC advise:
Most people with mild symptoms of COVID-19 will recover at home without hospital treatment. Taking over-the-counter medications may help with specific symptoms. For example, acetaminophen can relieve pain.
State and local health departments can provide COVID-19 tests to those with symptoms. People without symptoms may also wish for a test, such as someone who has recently come into contact with a person with known COVID-19.
It is generally safe to leave the house again when all of the following apply:
- have passed since the first symptoms appeared.
- The symptoms are improving.
- an inability to stay awake
- blue or white lips or face
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Signs That You May Have Already Had Covid
COVID-19 can affect many different parts of your body and cause general symptoms that have many potential causes. Some people with COVID-19 dont develop any symptoms.
Its impossible to know if you had an infection for sure without a positive COVID-19 test, but here are some of the potential signs.
What Is The Best Way To Take My Temperature
You can use a digital thermometer to take your temperature. An oral temperature is generally the best way to check for fever in adults and children over 4 years of age.
Be sure that you wait at least 30 minutes after eating or drinking. Also, for the best measure of fever, do not take a fever-reducing medicine such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen within 4 hours of checking your temperature.
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How Infectious Is It And How Does That Compare With The Flu
COVID-19 and influenza are probably fairly similarly infections.
A single ill person with COVID-19 can infect more people than a single ill person with influenza. COVID-19 has a higher reproduction number of 2.0-2.5. This means one person will infect, on average, 2 to 2.5 people.
Seasonal influenza has a reproduction number of about 1.28, meaning one person will infect, on average, between one and two people.
But this is balanced by influenzas ability to infect more quickly. It takes, on average, 3 days to become sick with the flu, but you can still transmit it before symptoms emerge.
It takes 5-6 days to become sick with COVID-19. We still dont know if you can be infectious before getting coronavirus symptoms, but it doesnt seem to be a major driver of transmission.
So influenza can spread faster than COVID-19.
The case fatality rate of COVID-19 is higher than that of seasonal influenza , although as noted above, the true fatality of COVID-19 is still not clear.
You Developed A Fever First
COVID-19 symptoms often show up in a particular order. In a 2020 study published by the University of Southern California, researchers analyzed the development of symptoms in 55,000 people with COVID-19 and compared them to the symptoms of 2,000 people with influenza.
They found that influenza most commonly started with a cough, while the initial symptom of COVID-19 was most likely to be a fever.
A wide range of initial symptoms of COVID-19 have been reported in scientific literature. Just because you didnt develop a fever first doesnt necessarily mean you didnt have COVID-19.
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How Can I Keep My Family Safe If My Child Has Symptoms
- Keep your family home until you talk to your doctor. If the doctor thinks your child’s symptoms could be COVID-19, everyone in the household should stay home until testing is done or symptoms are gone. Check the CDC’s website for details.
- Keep other people and pets in the house away from your child as much as possible.
- Try to have one person only care for the sick child so others are not exposed.
- If your child is over 2 years old and can wear a mask without finding it hard to breathe, have them wear one when the caregiver is in the room. Don’t leave your child alone while they’re wearing a mask. The caregiver also should wear one when in the same room. For more about masks, check the CDC’s guide.
- If possible, have your sick child use a different bathroom from others. If that isn’t possible, wipe down the bathroom often.
- Everyone in your family should wash their hands well and often. Wash with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, or use alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
- Use regular household cleaners or wipes to clean things that get touched a lot . Do this every day.
How And When Do Symptoms Progress
If you have mild disease, fever is likely to settle within a few days and you are likely to feel significantly better after a week – the minimum time at which you can leave self-isolation is ten days.
You may continue coughing for a couple of weeks – while you should be very careful to maintain social distancing, as everyone should, you don’t need to stay in isolation just because your cough has not completely resolved. If you’re well in other respects, your likelihood of infecting others at this stage is low.
Loss of sense of smell can also persist – in many patients this has continued for several months. However, persistence of a loss of or change to your sense of smell or taste is not a reason to continue to self-isolate if your other symptoms have settled. If you still have a fever after ten days, you must stay in self-isolation.
In people with more severe infection, shortness of breath is likely to become more marked 7-10 days after they develop symptoms. This occurs because the infection takes hold deep in your lungs, leading to inflammation which prevents efficient transfer of oxygen from your lungs to your bloodstream. Symptoms can develop rapidly and worsen in minutes.
Even if you have completed the form before and been advised you do not need medical help, you need to call 999 if:
- You are too breathless to speak more than a few words or
- Your breathing has become harder and faster in the last hour, even when you are not doing anything.
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What To Do If You Don’t Have A Thermometer
One of the issues confronting people during this outbreak is that many physical and online stores are sold out of thermometers.
If you dont have one, the CDC says that a fever may be considered to be present if a person . . . feels warm to the touch or gives a history of feeling feverish. In other words, Moms method of placing the back of her hand on your forehead may be a decent fallback. But given the contagiousness of this coronavirus, remember to wash your hands thoroughly afterward.
And dont worry if you dont have someone at home who can do a touch check of your forehead. Schmidt notes most adults are fairly good at gauging when theyre feeling hot and unwell.
You could also look in the mirror. The CDC states that the appearance of a flushed face, glassy eyes, or chills could indicate a fever.
As a last resort, if you have a meat thermometer , you could experiment by placing it under your tongue to get a general sense of your temperature, and whether its going up or down. Though the method is certainly unorthodox, and not specifically recommended, I asked two doctors to test it out and they kindly obliged.
Schmidt says that her meat thermometer read about the same as an oral thermometer over three takes, but was 1 to 1.5 degrees lower than a temporal artery reading via her forehead. Nanos also humored my request and says that her meat thermometer is too variable, and the temperature drops as soon as you start pulling it out of your mouth.
What Does A Fever Do
GettyDengue fever, caused by a viral infection, is characterized by causing high fevers.
Most peoples average temperature, according to Medline Plus, is around 98.6° F . The CDC defines a fever as a measured temperature of 100.4° F or greater feeling warm to the touch is a more informal way of determining whether someone has a fever.
The Mayo Clinic noted that although fevers may be uncomfortable for adults, they are not typically cause for concern until they reach 103° F or occur with other symptoms of illness. Fever in children, however, is usually more concerning.
Medline Plus notes that fevers kickstart your bodys immune response to the presence of an infection. Fevers are also the first defense against bacteria and viruses, which typically have a more difficult time staying alive when your body is at a higher temperature.
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Why Days 5 To 10 Are So Important When You Have Coronavirus
Tracking your daily symptoms can help you and your doctors make better decisions about whether a hospital visit is needed.
When a relative of mine recently became seriously ill with what seemed to be a coronavirus infection, my first question was about timing. How many days ago did your symptoms start?
While most patients recover in about a week, a significant minority of patients enter a very nasty second wave of illness, said Dr. Ilan Schwartz, assistant professor of infectious disease at the University of Alberta. After the initial symptoms, things plateau and maybe even improve a little bit, and then there is a secondary worsening.
While every patient is different, doctors say that days five through 10 of the illness are often the most worrisome time for respiratory complications of Covid-19, particularly for older patients and those with underlying conditions like high blood pressure, obesity or diabetes. Younger patients who develop complications may begin struggling a little later, as late as days 10 to 12. Most people who reach day 14 without any worrying symptoms are likely to be on the road to recovery.
Its important to call a doctor if you have shortness of breath or any concerning symptom no matter what day of illness you are on. And dont panic if you still feel lousy after a week of illness. Its common for Covid symptoms to linger, and feeling unwell for more than a week doesnt always mean you need medical treatment.
Why You Need To Call First
If youre wondering why doctors are asking patients to call before going to any facility for care, Dr. Arnold says its because it gives the staff time to prepare for your arrival. It also gives your doctor a chance to see if you can get the care you need through an e-visit or a video visit instead of coming into the office.
In some cases, we can evaluate your symptoms over the phone or arrange an e-visit, she says. Calling ahead is good for everyone it protects you, our staff and our patients who need care for other reasons.
Dr. Arnold adds, We want everyone to know that its still safe to come to your primary care office, but please call first so we can give you the best care possible.
Visit our Navigating COVID-19 site to learn more about treatment for COVID-19 and how to care for yourself and others at home.
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If I’m Exposed To The Coronavirus How Long Before I Develop Symptoms
Symptoms can begin between two and 14 days after you have been infected with the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus. A study led by researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health shows that the median time for symptoms to show up is about five days. That is why the CDC uses the 14-day quarantine period for people following exposure to the coronavirus.
Who Is Most At Risk Of Dying
People aged over 60 years with underlying health problems are at highest risk of severe disease and death.
For people aged 60-69, 3.6% of those who are infected will die from COVID-19. This rises to 8% for for 70-79 year olds and 14.8% for those over 80.
Among people under 50 years, just 0.2-0.4% will die from the disease and this rises to 1.3% for 50-59 year olds.
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What Other Symptoms Can You Experience
GettyA dry cough is one of the most common symptoms of coronavirus.
There are several other symptoms that might mean you have coronavirus and they can take as little as two and as many 14 days to show, according to the CDC.
Less common symptoms include aches and pains, nasal congestion, sore throat and diarrhea. The CDC also included shortness of breath or difficulty breathing and on April 26, added chills, repeated shaking with chills, muscle pain, headache, sore throat and a loss of taste or smell to the list.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that people with COVID-19 have had a wide range of symptoms reported ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness. These symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus:
The Harvard Medical Center has detected even more symptoms. Some people have gastrointestinal symptoms, such as loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and abdominal pain or discomfort associated with COVID-19, researchers noted.
Like much about the virus, the breadth of symptoms is unknown. As scientists conduct more research and more people are tested, it may change. However, the CDC is advising anyone who experiences emergency warning signs to seek medical attention right away if any of the following symptoms appear:
Feeling A Little Run Down
Elizabeth Schneider, 37, went to a house party in late February. A few days later she woke up feeling a bit run down.
She went to work anyway, figuring she just needed to take it easy and go to bed early that night. Halfway through the day, though, she started feeling feverish and went home to nap.
She awoke to a 101°F fever. By nighttime, her fever spiked to 103°F , and she was shivering uncontrollably.
The fever was quite high, I was pretty surprised about that. Normally when you get a cold, maybe you get a 100-degree fever or something like that, but a 103-degree fever is pretty serious, she said.
Schneider took some over-the-counter pain medications and went to bed early. The next day, her temperature was back down to 101°F .
She soon got word that a dozen other people from the house party also felt sick.
Many of them had gone to a hospital and tested negative for the flu. Frustrated they werent also tested for COVID-19, the group decided to do at-home nasal swab COVID-19 test kits through the University of Washingtons Seattle Flu Study.
Seven people tested positive, including Schneider. But by the time they received the results a week later, mostly everyone had already recovered, and there was no longer a need to self-isolate.
This whole time I thought I had just contracted the flu, Schneider said. On a scale of 1 to 10, she rates the illness at 6.5.
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Why Might You Have A Fever After Getting The Covid Vaccine
“When you receive a vaccination, your immune system gets activated in order to build a protective response against the viral protein,” says Dr. Sanjeev Jain, M.D., a doctor double-board certified in immunology and internal medicine at Columbia Asthma and Allergy Clinic. Since your immune system is turned on by the vaccine, your body will respond accordingly, often by heating you up from the inside. “When the inflammatory mediators spread throughout your body, you can also have fever, muscle aches, and headache,” Dr. Jain explains.
If you don’t get a fever, that doesn’t mean your immune system isn’t responding properly to the vaccine. According to the Cleveland Clinic, more than 50% of people don’t experience any side effects at all, yet the COVID vaccines are 94% effective. Just because you might get a fever doesn’t mean you will, and that’s OK.