As of March 19, 2020, 220,199 people across the world have been affected by the new coronavirus. The number of deaths reached 8,982 while 85,769 people have been declared fully recovered. Due to the scale of the pandemic and the unprecedented prevention measures, there are lots of myths and misunderstandings circulating.
So, what exactly is Covid-19? What are the coronavirus signs and symptoms that can warn you early enough something may be wrong?
Let’s check out the specific coronavirus symptoms 2020 and the essentials you need to understand in connection to the virus.
What Is Covid-19?
Before moving on to the respiratory coronavirus symptoms, let’s try answering some of the basic questions first.
The World Health Organization has an extensive guide you can use to get acquainted with Covid-19.
The coronavirus disease (Covid-19) is a respiratory illness that’s caused by a virus (which means antibiotics aren’t going to affect it). There’s already enough evidence thatthe virus isn’t human-engineered, it actually evolved to cross the species barrier from animals to humans.
Close contact with a person who is infected with Covid-19 increases the risk of the disease spreading. The virus is located in respiratory droplets that one person can get on another through coughing or sneezing. This is the main reason why social distancing, the use of masks and washing hands are all recommended as preventative measures.
Coronavirus can enter the body through the eyes, nose and mouth. Frequent handwashing and refraining from touching your face are both vitally important to limit the spread of the virus.
If you become infected, you’ll know pretty soon that something’s wrong.
People who are young and healthy will develop a condition that’s similar to the flu as a result of the infection. Some will have no symptoms whatsoever. In older people and those with compromised immunity, however, Covid-19 can lead to complications like pneumonia and extreme breathing difficulties. These complications are the ones that can potentially lead to a lethal outcome from the infection.
Coronavirus Signs and Symptoms
The coronavirus infection is spreading at a time when the world is also affected by several flu varieties. What does it take to distinguish between one and the other?
The coronavirus symptoms 2020 are very similar to those of the flu. There are, however, a couple of important distinctions between the two conditions.
Some of the primary coronavirus signs and symptoms include:
- A fever
- A new and persistent cough (usually dry and non-productive)
- Shortness of breath
- Tiredness, lethargy, muscle aches
As you can see, nasal congestion and sore throat aren’t described among the primary symptoms of Covid-19.
People who have been exposed to the virus through contact with an infected individual can develop symptoms in anywhere between two and 14 days after the exposure.
Keep in mind that some people infected with coronavirus will have no symptoms whatsoever. In other instances, the signs will be so mild that the person wouldn’t know they’re infected. In both cases, a person is still carrying the virus and they’re capable of infecting others. Hence, protective measures and frequent handwashing are essential, even if you’re meeting with someone who appears to be perfectly healthy.
Those who experience the symptoms mentioned above shouldn’t go see a doctor. Calling your general practitioner and self-quarantine are the best approaches if you suspect a coronavirus infection. Your doctor will give you instructions over the phone and let you know what steps to undertake next.
You should seek medical assistance if you experience any of the following more serious coronavirus signs and symptoms:
- Extreme shortness of breath even when you’re at rest and not doing anything
- Pain and chest pressure that don’t go away
- Bluish lips, face, fingernails (signs your body isn’t getting enough oxygen)
Self-Isolating if You Think You Are Infected
You need to self-isolate even if you have the slightest suspicions of having contracted Covid-19.
What exactly does self-isolation mean and entail? Here are the essentials:
- Stay at home
- Do not go to work and to public spaces, if possible, use a home office
- Order food online and don’t initiate physical contact with the delivery person (let them drop the package at your doorstep and step back before you go out to get your delivery)
- Do not let visitors enter your home
- If you live with a partner or family members, they will have to do the self-isolation with you
Obviously, this can be difficult to accomplish, especially if you have young children.
At a time when the infection rate is picking up, however, it’s imperative to follow the rules and to educate little ones about the dangers. Getting children in the habit of thoroughly washing their hands will also be essential.
The one good thing about the whole situation is that the coronavirus symptoms in children tend to be mildest. It seems that the disease is most challenging for seniors while little ones are spared from the potentially fatal complications.
Educate Yourself about Coronavirus and Other Pathogens
The situation is dynamic as the medical crisis is still unfolding.
While you are into social isolation or a self-quarantine, you can use the time to educate yourself about the coronavirus and other viral pathogens that we’re susceptible to right now.
Entities like American CPR Institute offer comprehensive and 100 percent online-based learning opportunities. Not only will you learn about common bloodborne pathogens and viruses, you will also get a certificate in the end of the training. Completing such a training course online can really further your career and help you make better professional choices in the future
Obviously, this too shall pass but at the time being, it’s important to educate yourself and stay safe.
Don’t hesitate to contact your healthcare provider if you feel unwell or you have questions about Covid-19. It’s important not to panic if you have some of the coronavirus signs and symptoms but at the same time, adequate measures can lessen the severity of the condition and protect the ones you love from the spread of the disease.