This year, indoor allergy symptoms have an added complication: the possibility of COVID-19. The COVID-19 virus can cause multiple symptoms that are similar to those of indoor allergies. Given that the symptoms of COVID-19 can also vary greatly from person to person, understanding whether or not you simply have allergies or are infected with coronavirus can be difficult.
The best way to know whether or not you have COVID-19 is to get tested, but better understanding the distinction between indoor allergy symptoms and COVID-19 can provide peace of mind.
Understanding COVID-19 Symptoms
The key symptoms that indicate a COVID-19 infection are shortness of breath, fever, and a dry cough. However, some patients may have symptoms that are more similar to the common cold. These include a runny nose, congestion, cough, sore throat, or shortness of breath.
Other symptoms of COVID-19 include:
- Extreme fatigue
- Shortness of breath
- New loss of smell and/or taste
Understanding Indoor Allergy Symptoms
Indoor allergens usually stem from dust mites, pet dander, mold, pollen, or cockroach droppings. These allergens can cause symptoms including:
- Nasal congestion
- Runny nose
- Watery eyes
- Itchy or red eyes
- Sore throat
- Skin rash
- Dry, itchy skin
Differentiating COVID-19 and Indoor Allergies
Here are a few key tips for differentiating COVID-19 symptoms from allergy symptoms:
- COVID-19 symptoms usually only last for 7 to 14 days. Allergy symptoms will last as long as you’re exposed to the allergen, which could be all season long.
- The vast majority of people who have COVID-19 develop a fever. Fever is not a symptom of indoor allergies.
- If you have a cough with COVID-19, it will be more extreme than a typical allergy cough.
- Many people experience the same allergy symptoms from year to year. If you’re having symptoms that you experienced at the same time last year due to allergies, it’s likely that you’re suffering from indoor allergies, not COVID-19.
- Sneezing and itchy or watery eyes are very common symptoms of indoor allergies, but are not typical of COVID-19 infections.
- Indoor allergies usually only cause shortness of breath or trouble breathing, which are common symptoms of COVID-19, in people with asthma.
- If you have a new loss of your sense of smell or taste, you may have COVID-19 and should get tested. This is not typical of allergies.
For confirmation of whether or not you have COVID-19, getting tested is the best solution. If you receive a negative result and are experiencing symptoms, visit Tampa Allergy for allergy treatment.