7 Covid-19 symptoms mistaken for flu, common cold, or malaria expose the reality that you may have had Covid-19 without even knowing it. This article is very important at this time because of the prevalence of Covid omicron XBB.1.5. in the last couple of weeks.
According to the data published on 30 December 2022, by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the new Covid omicron XBB.1.5 variant is rapidly becoming dominant in the U.S. It is now representing about 41% of new cases. And because it’s highly immune evasive, and binds better to cells than related subvariants, could result in a surge of breakthrough infections and re-infections.
Furthermore, there is the possibility that the subvariant can render the Covid-19 vaccines, including the omicron boosters, less effective. Thus causing more breakthrough infections.
But while scientists and public health officials are monitoring the new omicron variant XBB.1.5. it’s also important to keep abreast of your health status. Have you been feeling under the weather lately? If so, read more about the 7 Covid-19 symptoms mistaken for flu, common cold, or malaria to help you make appropriate health decisions.
A Nasty Feverish Cold
Since the chances of Covid infection or reinfection are real, your flu or malaria symptoms might be Covid. However, you can spot the difference since a Covid infection will last for 2 weeks or longer. Equally, Covid may give you a fever making it difficult for you to breathe, whereas this isn’t the case with the flu. Also, Covid presents similar symptoms to malaria, for example, fever. But both diseases are caused by different organisms and differ in mode of transmission.
Breathlessness isn’t typically a symptom of flu, cold, or malaria. But feeling like you can’t breathe is common with Covid-19. You may have thought you had bronchitis which Covid-19 can cause. Or it may have felt like anxiety or a panic attack. But with Covid-19, shortness of breath lasts longer than a panic attack. It also comes with flu-like symptoms.
Cough That Refuses To Go
If you had a dry prickly cough that’s taking longer to go away, it could be a symptom of Covid-19. A cough caused by a common cold normally begins mildly and then worsens in the next 5 to 7 days.
Red And Watering Eyes
Covid-19 can affect your eyes making them red and watery. This is one of the reasons why you were told to wash your hands and avoid touching your face. Therefore, your conjunctivitis and watering eyes or blurred vision might have been caused by the virus. And not the sneezing symptom from a common cold.
Heart Tremors or Pain In Your Chest
Sometimes if your heart beats faster, flutters, or pounds, this may be due to Covid-19. You may also feel painful tightness in your chest. These symptoms can show up even after the virus is cleared from your body. However, you will notice such signs for up to 2 weeks in mild cases. Or for 6 weeks in more serious cases.
Feeling really tired is a common symptom of COVID-19. So if you had that kind of extreme fatigue that didn’t get better with plenty of sleep, it could have been a sign of the virus. The feeling can come back again days and sometimes weeks later.
Taste Or Smell Loss
Loss of appetite is a symptom of flu and malaria. But if foods and drinks seemed tasteless, or you can’t pick up a smell for a couple of weeks, this might be a Covid infection. Data shows that nearly 80% of people who test positive have this taste and smell loss problem. And it’s normally a sign of a mild case of Covid and not a symptom of malaria.
What You Need To Do
Get Covid test
Since Covid, flu, the common cold, and even malaria have similar symptoms; the only way to find out what’s ailing you is to get tested. Though they have risks of serious illnesses, different viruses, and organisms cause these infections. So, health providers treat them with different medications.
Get an Antibodies Test
In order to erase the possibility of a Covid reinfection is to get a blood test to see if you have the antibodies that fight the virus. If you do have them though, scientists aren’t sure how well they’ll protect you from getting it again. But some studies show that people who have those antibodies are less likely to get Covid again.
The different mutating changes to the Covid virus don’t affect the symptoms it causes or affect the seriousness of the virus. The symptom of the latest omicron variant XBB.1.5 is the same as the omicron original but has a growth advantage and is immune evasive. The 7 Covid-19 symptoms mistaken for flu can be resolved through consultation with your doctor. This is the only way to know for sure if you have Covid, flu, or the common cold, rather than self-medicate and hope for the best.