how to distinguish the symptoms?

how to distinguish the symptoms?

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Allergies or coronavirus: how to distinguish the symptoms?

The return of pollens is the cause of allergies, which can manifest as respiratory signs. Just like the coronavirus. How to distinguish the symptoms? We take stock.

25 to 30% of the French population suffers from food allergy, contact or respiratory. In the current context ofSars-CoV-2 coronavirus epidemic, the latter type of allergy can cause some confusion.

And for good reason: among air allergies, we findpollen allergy, which marks its return with the arrival of spring, and which may be causing respiratory symptoms. Respiratory symptoms that are also found in people with Covid-19. So, how to distinguish allergies from coronavirus?

What are the symptoms of allergy?

Air allergies, in other words dust mite allergies, to the cat and dog hair, mold or pollen are manifested by:

  • sneezing
  • a runny nose
  • conjunctivitis
  • an irritated throat sensation

Allergies are the main cause ofasthma. Result: some asthmatics see their disease exacerbated during pollens, and trigger asthma attacks, which usually manifest as:

  • respiratory discomfort
  • a cough
  • wheezing

Coronavirus: the signs that should alert

The main symptoms of Covid-19, the disease caused by the Sars-Cov-2 coronavirus, are:

  • fever
  • a cough
  • fatigue
  • of headache
  • sore throat
  • respiratory discomfort
  • body aches

Other symptoms could also add to this list. Among them are the runny nose and conjunctivitis. Some Covid-19 patients have also experienced sense of smell and taste or even digestive disorders. It is also possible to have been infected with the virus without having symptoms.

Allergies or coronavirus: how to tell the difference?

If the coronavirus and air allergies have common symptoms, like runny nose, conjunctivitis, or a sore throat, they are easily distinguishable. Allergies do not cause fever, headache or body aches, which are among the main symptoms of coronavirus.

What about the cough and respiratory discomfort can occur when you are affected by Covid-19 and which can also occur in case of allergies in people prone to asthma? “The differentiator may be the unusual and different character of the cough compared to previous years”, explains the Asthma and Allergies association in a press release dated March 19. As a reminder: the cough of people affected by the coronavirus is generally dry.

The treatment antihistamine often followed by people with allergies is also a good way to differentiate an allergy from the coronavirus. “If your nose is runny and does not run after taking the antihistamine, it is very likely that your allergy is back”, explains to Evening Mag Professor Valerie Hox, otolaryngologist at the Cliniques Universitaires Saint-Luc, in Belgium.

Allergies, asthma, coronavirus: when to worry?

Do you have allergic asthma and are wondering during this time of the coronavirus epidemic? Know that people with chronic respiratory pathology likely to decompensate during a viral infection, among which some forms of asthma are found, have been classified by the High Council of Public Health as people at risk of developing severe forms of Covid-19.

If you have an allergic asthma and you have respiratory discomfort, it is possible that this is due to the concentration of pollens. However, “don’t hesitate to take your Ventoline and watch your temperature if you have any doubts”, advises the Asthma and Allergies association. If the difficulty in breathing persists, or you have a fever, contact the Samu.

You don’t have specific symptoms but have questions about allergies, asthma and coronavirus? The Asthma & Allergies association provides a toll-free number: 0800 19 20 21.

Sources: the websiteHealth Insurance, the site of government and the association website Asthma and Allergies.

This article was published on March 20, 2020 and some information may have changed since then.

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