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Is it COVID-19, a cold or allergies?

Posted at 5:29 AM, Jul 28, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-28 05:32:03-04

CAPE CORAL, Fla -- When it comes to spotting the symptoms of COVID-19, many are struggling to tell the difference between the virus, a cold, and allergies, and wondering whether it's time to get a test.

Doctors say it's more than just symptoms you need to take into account. You also need to think about situations, including whether you've been following the CDC guidelines for COVID-19.

Doctors told our sister station in Tampa the first thing to ask yourself is pretty simple... Have you been quarantining and social distancing?

When it comes to seasonal allergies, the symptoms can feel serious. So doctors say trying to figure out how serious they might be really boils down to those situations vs. Symptoms.

“If you have been quarantining and social distancing and not around anybody then that risk of COVID is probably small and rather minimal,” said Dr. Paul Nada, Tampa General Hospital.

The risk grows if you've been in contact with a COVID positive patient or haven't been following CDC guidelines.

Typical colds usually include a cough and sore throat, and allergies can be determined by itchy or watery eyes.

"Usually COVID symptoms are more fever cough, shortness of breath shakes chills, headache and tend to be a more rapid onset. And sometimes you have a loss of taste or smell which you typically don’t see with allergies,” he said.

Overall, if something seems off, experts says it's best to be cautious and contact a doctor.