Do you or anyone in your family have any of these symptoms?
1. You had a “bad cold”
Early in the pandemic, people believed that COVID-19 didn’t start circulating in the U.S. until late February and March. New research from the University of Texas suggests otherwise. For the study, scientists analyzed throat swabs taken last winter in people who had suspected flu cases.
It can be tough to distinguish a cold from a mild form of COVID-19 without a test, depending on which symptoms you experience, he says, but colds don’t typically cause shortness of breath, severe headaches, or gastrointestinal symptoms like COVID-19 can. Here’s the full list of the CDC’s official symptoms:
Fever or chills
Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
Muscle or body aches
New loss of taste or smell
Congestion or runny nose
Nausea or vomiting
2. You lost your sense of smell or taste at one point
Loss of smell and taste has been a big hallmark of COVID-19. While this symptom doesn’t occur for everyone.
Preliminary data from the American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery (AAO-HNS) found that, in COVID-19 patients who lost their sense of smell, 27% had “some improvement” within about seven days, while most were better within 10 days.
3. You’ve been dealing with unexplained hair loss
This hasn’t been widely studied in the context of COVID-19, but many people who have recovered from the virus are reporting issues with hair loss.
4. You feel breathless sometimes
Research published in the journal JAMA has found that people with COVID-19 can have after-effects of the virus, including shortness of breath. It’s not entirely clear why at this point or how long this can last, but it’s likely due to lasting inflammation in the lungs.
5. You have a cough that will not go away
A lingering cough is another symptom that people who participated in the JAMA study reported. The cough is often dry, meaning that nothing comes up, like phlegm or mucus, Dr. Adalja says. This is fairly common: Data from the CDC found that 43% of people who had COVID-19 still had a cough 14 to 21 days after getting a positive test for the virus.
6. You’re really, really tired
This is one of the biggest lingering effects after a person has COVID-19, according to the JAMA study. That study found that 53% of patients said they were struggling with fatigue around 60 days after they first showed signs of the virus.
7. You have unusual symptoms that seem to be lasting forever
Experts stress that COVID-19 is still a new virus, so doctors and scientists are learning more about it all the time. Research on the lasting effects of the virus is ongoing, and it’s difficult for doctors to say at this time that having certain symptoms could mean you had a COVID-19 infection, while others don’t.
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