How to Tell the Difference Between Allergies and COVID-19
It's been a really rough allergy season for a lot of us. And for me, with a grass allergy, just because it's getting cooler out doesn't mean my allergies are going to let up anytime soon. Maybe, if we get an early frost, I'll get rid of the runny nose and stuffiness by Halloween. Although it'll probably be more like Thanksgiving. Just in time for cold season. So how can you tell whether your allergies are bothering you, or if maybe you need to be checked for the coronavirus?
Johnson County Community Health Services published a handy guide of symptoms on their Facebook Page from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that can be caused by either the coronavirus or seasonal allergies: Cough, fatigue, runny nose, congestion, sore throat, and if you have asthma, or other breathing issues, shortness of breath.
So how can you determine the difference? It can be kind of difficult, however COVID-19 usually presents with a fever, seasonal allergies don't. People with allergies also can sneeze a lot and suffer from watery eyes, this generally doesn't present with the coronavirus. Bottom line, if you're unsure whether you're suffering from seasonal allergies or COVID-19 the CDC suggests you get tested.
Interestingly the CDC says masks can reduce some of your allergy symptoms because the mask can keep you from inhaling larger pollen particles, but masks shouldn't be your only defense against pollen because smaller particles can still be inhaled and cause your symptoms.
Obviously, if you're a seasonal allergy sufferer you're pretty aware of what triggers your symptoms and how your allergies make you feel. That's pretty much what I did as my grass allergy kicked up the later part of the summer. I watched how I felt, and looked for whether or not I had any of the COVID-19 symptoms. When I figured I could still smell the lemon in my Lemon Coke through my stuffy nose and mask, and my eyes were watering. Well I reached for the allergy medication and moved on.
For more information on seasonal allergies and COVID-19 you can check out the CDC's website here.