Cover Your Coughs And Sneezes
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Put your used tissues in a waste bin with a liner and lid.
- Clean your hands right away after you cough or sneeze.
- If youre washing your hands with soap and water, wet your hands and apply soap. Rub your hands together well for at least 20 seconds, then rinse. Dry your hands with a paper towel and use that same towel to turn off the faucet. If you dont have paper towels, its OK to use clean cloth towels. Replace them when theyre wet.
- If youre using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer, be sure to cover all parts of your hands with it. Rub your hands together until theyre dry.
How To Prevent A Cold Flu And Covid
For most people, having a cold, the flu or COVID doesnt require a trip to the emergency room. Most symptoms resolve after some much-needed rest, but that isnt always the case.
To decrease your chances of catching a cold, flu or COVID, remember to wash your hands frequently. Washing with warm, soapy water for at least 20 seconds can help get rid of the germs on your skin.
Avoid contact with people who are sick. And if you become sick, stay home to keep from infecting others.Remember, the best way to prevent the flu and COVID-19 is by getting vaccinated, says
Dr. Martin. The symptoms may be similar and having both viruses at one is possible. This is something youll want to avoid, especially older adults, young children and those with certain medical conditions.
If You Are More Likely To Get Very Sick From Covid
Your healthcare provider might recommend that you receive investigational treatment.
- For people at high risk of disease progression. The FDA has issued EUAs for a number of investigational monoclonal antibodies that can attach to parts of the virus. These antibodies could help the immune system recognize and respond more effectively to the virus. The NIH COVID-19 Treatment Guidelinesexternal icon provide information about these drugs and describe what is known about their effectiveness. If used, they should be administered as soon as possible after diagnosis and within 10 days of symptom onset. Your healthcare provider will decide whether these investigational treatments are appropriate to treat your illness.
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Don’t Throw Away Your Masks
Experts don’t yet know exactly how much safer the COVID-19 booster makes us against the virus. One study found that people who got a single-shot Johnson& Johnson COVID vaccine experienced a 35-fold increase in antibodies after receiving a Pfizer booster shot, and a 76-fold increase in antibodies after a Moderna booster. And the initial two-dose regimen remains extremely effective in preventing COVID-related hospitalizations and death.
But getting a booster doesn’t mean it’s time to throw away your masks and act like the pandemic is over. “Getting an additional dose of a vaccine does not make you Superman,”Celine Gounder, MD, a clinical assistant professor of medicine at NYU Langone Health, told HuffPost this week.
It’s important to continue with best practices, like mask-wearing and social distancing in public, and washing your hands regularly. “It’s still the same precautions, but the fact is that you have just improved your immunity,”Charlotte Baker, DrPH, MPH, assistant professor of epidemiology at Virginia Tech, told NPR last week. “So if you’re somebody who is not really high risk, you can feel a little bit better about your chances of contracting COVID.”
What About Other People In My Home
Part of caring for yourself at home may involve preventing the spread of disease to others. This can seem pretty difficult, especially if you live with other people or have a caretaker. However, some simple steps to take include:
· Stay in a separate room
· Ensure good airflow in shared spaces
· Cough/sneeze into the elbow
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How To Stay Safe Before And After Vaccination
Follow Fauci’s fundamentals and help end this pandemic, no matter where you livewear a face mask that fits snugly and is double layered, don’t travel, social distance, avoid large crowds, don’t go indoors with people you’re not sheltering with , practice good hand hygiene, get vaccinated when it becomes available to you, and to protect your life and the lives of others, don’t visit any of these 35 Places You’re Most Likely to Catch COVID.
Eat This, Not That!
Is It Allergies The Flu Or Coronavirus How To Recognize Symptoms
With COVID-19 appearing in Houston at the end of flu season and the beginning of allergy season, how do we know the difference?
RodeoHouston has been cancelled for the first time in 80 years Austins SXSW has fallen victim to the virus, too. Conferences, schools and businesses across the country are deciding if or when to shutter to prevent the opportunity for community spread.
For these reasons, it is perfectly understandable that you may have concerns over symptoms you may be feeling, like a tickle in your throat or a persistent cough. However, with coronavirus testing kits in short supply across the country, it is not advised that every person be tested if they feel ill, and certainly health care providers cannot be testing individuals multiple times per person.
If youre experiencing a runny nose and itchy eyes, chances are youve just got a cold. These tend to be localized to the head, giving you some nasal backup, and maybe even a nasal headache if the pressure builds up. This could be alleviated with over the counter antihistamines like diphenhydramine or loratadine , and you are probably not seriously ill. Unless you have a preexisting condition like asthma, you will likely not experience shortness of breath due to allergies.
The flu and coronavirus affect entire systems of your body. While you may not experience a runny nose like you might with allergies, youll likely have a sore throat, a cough, shortness of breath, joint and muscle ache, and a fever.
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What Are The Symptoms Of Allergies
Allergy symptoms range in severity from person to person, can be stronger at certain times of the year and aren’t contagious. “For example, someone who suffers from allergies may have their worst symptoms during the summer months, when it’s hotter and plants and grasses pollinate,” says Dr. Martin. They can also be caused by normal things in your environment think pollen, dust, pet dander and mold.
Allergy symptoms can include:
- Nausea or vomiting
Like most respiratory viruses, COVID-19 can be spread person-to-person through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.
Thats why its important to take the recommended measures to protect yourself and others by getting vaccinated, washing your hands, avoiding touching your face and staying home if youre sick, says Dr. Martin.
If you have respiratory symptoms, screen yourself. Based on your results, you can schedule a COVID test . If you test positive, call your doctor.
Its important to identify positive cases of COVID, so that we can take proactive measures in protecting our communities, says Dr. Martin.
Things To Try If You’re Feeling Breathless
If you’re feeling breathless, it can help to keep your room cool.
Try turning the heating down or opening a window. Do not use a fan as it may spread the virus.
You could also try:
- breathing slowly in through your nose and out through your mouth, with your lips together like you’re gently blowing out a candle
- sitting upright in a chair
- relaxing your shoulders, so you’re not hunched
- leaning forward slightly support yourself by putting your hands on your knees or on something stable like a chair
Try not to panic if you’re feeling breathless. This can make it worse.
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How To Avoid Spreading Covid
COVID-19 can easily be passed from one person to another. It can spread in droplets in the air or left on surfaces after a sick person coughs or sneezes. It can also spread if someone touches a sick person and then touches their eyes, nose, or mouth.
Follow the instructions in this section to help keep COVID-19 from spreading to people in your home and community.
- If you have COVID-19 symptoms and are waiting for your test results, follow these instructions until:
- You get your test results and theyre negative. If you had a rapid test and get a negative result, get a PCR test to check your results. Keep following these instructions until you get a negative PCR test result.
How Can I Access These Treatments
Depending on your medical history, risks, and symptoms, your health care provider can help you determine whether a therapy that is FDA-approved, or available under an EUA, is right for you.
The following websites contain information regarding access to monoclonal antibody treatments for COVID-19:
You can also contact your state health department for treatment information.
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Treatment In The Hospital
- Slowing the virus. Antiviral medications reduce the ability of the virus to multiply and spread through the body.
- Reducing an overactive immune response. In patients with severe COVID-19, the bodys immune system may overreact to the threat of the virus, worsening the disease. This can cause damage to the bodys organs and tissues. Some treatments can help reduce this overactive immune response.
- Treating complications. COVID-19 can damage the heart, blood vessels, kidneys, brain, skin, eyes, and gastrointestinal organs. It also can cause other complications. Depending on the complications, additional treatments might be used for severely ill hospitalized patients, such as blood thinners to prevent or treat blood clots.
- Supporting the bodys immune function. Plasma from patients who have recovered from COVID-19called convalescent plasmacan contain antibodies to the virus. This could help the immune system recognize and respond more effectively to the virus, but currently the NIH COVID-19 Treatment Guidelinesexternal icon find there is not enough evidence to recommend these treatments.
Understanding Colds Flu And Covid And Your Treatment Options
Maureen Caro, FNP-BC, Family Nurse Practitioner
This winter is gearing up and along with it are the cold and flu! Everyone is very concerned about COVID-19, and there is considerable overlap with symptoms from cold, flu and COVID-19. Of course, the best information comes directly from your provider! At Health Partnership Clinic, we encourage our patients to utilize the patient portal and email any questions or concerns.
A general rule of thumb for differentiating cold and flu is that you can work through a cold, but you cant work through flu. Of course, I am not recommending anyone go to work with any kind of symptoms this year! However, people coming in pajamas and uncombed hair and falling asleep in my clinic are likely suffering from flu versus a simple cold. Flu tends to cause a fever , muscle aches, severe headache, fatigue. Cough, congestion, and sometimes diarrhea is also common. Colds tend to be more of an annoyance, a little cough, post-nasal drainage, feeling tired.
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Drugs Approved Or Authorized For Use
- The Food and Drug Administration has approved one drug, remdesivir , to treat COVID-19.
- The FDA can also issue emergency use authorizationsexternal icon to allow healthcare providers to use products that are not yet approved, or that are approved for other uses, to treat patients with COVID-19 if certain legal requirements are met.
- The National Institutes of Health has developed and regularly updates Treatment Guidelinesexternal icon to help guide healthcare providers caring for patients with COVID-19, including when clinicians might consider using one of the products under an EUA.
How To Treat Symptoms
- For a fever over 101, alternate Tylenol and Advil so youre taking a dose of one or the other every 3 hours.
- Use both cough suppressants and expectorants .
- Drink a ton, hydrate hydrate.
- Rest lots.
Most healthy people will have mild symptoms. A study of more than 72,000 patients by the Centers for Disease Control in China showed 80 percent of the cases there were relatively mild.
But infections can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure and even death, according to the World Health Organization. Older people with underlying health conditions are most at risk.
The CDC believes symptoms may appear anywhere from two to 14 days after being exposed.
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Side Effects Can Be More Severe After Second Dose
Adults age 55 and older typically have fewer side effects than younger people, but you may still feel under the weather for a few days after your vaccine.
“It means your body is doing what you asked it to do, said Buddy Creech, M.D., an infectious disease specialist and director of the Vanderbilt Vaccine Research Program in Nashville, Tennessee.
Expect more side effects after the second dose. In addition to a sore arm, common symptoms include tiredness, headache, muscle pain, joint pain, chills and fever, according to the CDC.
Dean Blumberg, M.D., an infectious disease specialist at UC Davis Health, pointed out two other post-vaccine symptoms doctors have been seeing: a rash or itchiness around the injection site that arises five to 10 days after vaccination sometimes referred to as COVID arm and swollen lymph nodes under your arm.
Youll Have A Severe Reaction
This can include shortness of breath, tightness in the chest, coughing up thick mucus, loss of appetite, chills, sweating and new loss of taste and smell. A severe reaction to COVID-19 can land you in intensive care and can lead to pneumonia, respiratory failure, sepsis and, at worst, death. According to the World Health Organization, about 1 in 5 people will have a severe reaction. Older adults and those with chronic or underlying conditions are more likely to have this type of reaction.
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If I Cant Shorten The Disease What Can I Do
What you can focus on, is controlling your symptoms and keeping yourself comfortable. This could be as simple as staying in bed, getting lots of rest, and eating healthy food. If you have body aches or a fever, you may want to take a fever reducer/pain reliever, such as Tylenol .
If you are congested or have a cough, there are several over-the-counter medications you can try. Sudafed, DayQuil, NyQuil, Robitussin, and Mucinex are just a few of the brands that contain different active ingredients. When you are choosing what to take, be sure to read the labels carefully. If you have chest congestion and want to cough out the phlegm, a cough expectorant may be best for you. Alternatively, if you are trying to sleep through the night and dont want to be bothered by coughing, a cough suppressant may be best. Try to match up your most bothersome symptoms with the medication descriptions on the box. Also, make sure you are not doubling up on any active ingredients. For example, DayQuil already has acetaminophen in it, so you would not want to pair it with Tylenol.
How To Manage Your Symptoms
Its helpful to keep a daily journal of your symptoms and the medications you use to manage them. This will help you see how your symptoms are changing over time. This can be useful if you need to contact or visit your healthcare provider.
If you use a device for sleep apnea or a home nebulizer, talk with your healthcare provider before using it. These devices may spread the virus that causes COVID-19.
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What Is The Recommended Pain Reliever For Covid
Early on in the pandemic, the World Health Organization recommended using acetaminophen instead of ibuprofen for managing symptoms of COVID-19 or side effects from vaccination. However, researchers have found little to no evidence that one type of pain reliever is riskier than another.
While recommendations related to the management of COVID-19 are rapidly changing, most doctors still prefer acetaminophen over ibuprofen. If you cannot take acetaminophen or experience no relief from symptoms despite taking the maximum dose , you can take ibuprofen instead.
Keep Track Of Your Temperature
- Measure your temperature 2 times every day: once in the morning and once in the evening.
- If youre getting chemotherapy and have a new fever of 100.4 °F or higher, call your healthcare provider.
- If you have a fever of 102 °F or higher that lasts for 24 hours and doesnt get better after you take acetaminophen, call your healthcare provider.
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