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Telling the Difference Between Seasonal Allergies and Covid-19

Allergies can be an annoyance for as many as 60 million Americans who suffer symptoms of seasonal allergies. They can be especially frustrating during the pandemic because the symptoms can feel a lot like COVID-19, particularly the milder forms of the illness.

So how do you know whether it’s a case of seasonal allergies or COVID-19? According to the Washington State Department of Health, there are a few ways to tell the difference.

  • Symptoms like chills and fevers are rarely associated with allergies and are more commonly found in viruses like COVID-19 or the flu.
  • Also rare with allergies are symptoms like chest pain, shortness of breath, and loss of taste and/or smell which are more common with a COVID-19 infection.
  • Symptoms more commonly associated with allergies include itching in the nose or eyes.
  • Sneezing is also more common with allergies than it is with COVID-19.
Washington State Department of Health Seasonal Allergies and Covid-19 Graphic

If you believe you might have contracted Covid-19, it is best to be cautious and get tested, whether using an at-home test or screening at a healthcare facility.