Allergies vs. COVID-19 Symptoms: What’s the Difference?
It happens every year—sneezing, throat soreness, and nasal congestion from stubborn seasonal allergies. But, this year is different. While allergies may have been a pesky annoyance in the past, you may now be wondering if your allergies are actually signs of COVID-19, the disease caused by the new coronavirus. To help clear up any confusion, let’s take a quick look at the differences between the symptoms of these conditions.
Allergies are what happens when your immune system responds to irritants such as pollen, pet dander, and ragweed. Some of the most common symptoms of environmental allergies include:
- A runny or stuffy nose
- A cough or sore throat from post-nasal drip
- Itchy, red, swollen, or watery eyes
- Itchiness in your nose or on the roof of your mouth
- Ear pain or pressure
The COVID-19 crisis is a rapidly evolving situation, as researchers learn more about this new viral disease every day. Currently, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) lists the following as potential symptoms of COVID-19:
- Fever or chills
- Shortness of breath
- Muscle or body aches
- Reduced sense of taste or smell
- Nasal congestion or runny nose
- Nausea or vomiting
While allergies and COVID-19 do share a few symptoms—such as nasal congestion, sore throat, fatigue and headache—that’s about where their similarities end. A key indicator that COVID-19 may be to blame for your symptoms is if you have a fever, chills, aches, or shortness of breath. On the other hand, allergies are more likely at the root of your symptoms if they include sneezing or itchiness.
We Can Help
If you are experiencing persistent allergy symptoms that are impacting your quality of life, the specialists at Scotch Institute of Ear Nose & Throat in Wesley Chapel and Trinity, FL, can deliver the relief you need. Contact us today to schedule an in-person or virtual appointment.