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Allergies or COVID-19?

Regional News

JOPLIN, Mo. (KSNF)— Ragweed pollen is wild in the Four States right now. It’s causing runny noses, coughs and congestion. And some of these allergy symptoms may sound like COVID-19.

They are two entirely different conditions, but many of the symptoms of seasonal allergies and the COVID 19 virus share in common, including cough, shortness of breath, fatigue and even a sore throat and headache.

Local nurses say the Fall allergy season is in full swing, and if you always have the same problems this time of year, the culprit is most likely allergies.

Donna Stokes RN, Mercy Infection Control Coordinator, said, “With allergies, you’re gonna look for the watery eyes, the runny nose, the sneezing, typically you’re not going to have a fever with allergies, you’re not going to have that extreme head ache, loss of taste, loss of smell, that’s a good indication of COVID.”

But if someone’s been suffering more severe symptoms and some of them they’ve never experienced before, then it could be coronavirus.

“Loss of taste, loss of smell, that’s a very good indication of of COVID.”

Another similarity between the two conditions, testing is available to confirm the diagnosis. If you think there are a lot of common symptoms between COVID-19 and allergies, Stokes says it’s even tougher to distinguish between COVID-19 and influenza.

“If it’s different and especially if they’ve had exposure to someone that’s positive, we would encourage them to be tested.”

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