Allergies Vs Covid

It’s Spring and while that means pretty flowers are blooming, it also means pollens and allergens are in the air around us. Living in a pandemic, however, presents its own unique challenge for allergy sufferers especially when our immune systems triggers a response to irritants that mimic symptoms of much more serious viral and bacterial infections.

What are the symptoms of the coronavirus disease?

Using this Venn diagram, we’ve mapped out symptoms of the corona virus and allergies that will help you compare symptoms and determine if you need medical intervention.


– You can save this image to your phone or desktop as a quick reference guide for yourself or others who suffer with their allergies.

The three main symptoms of Covid-19 according to Dr. Kurt Schlemmer Ear, nose and throat, head and neck surgeon at Busamed Hillcrest Private Hospital are fever, fatigue, and dry cough. Dr. Schlemmer says other patients have presented with muscle aches and pains, nasal congestion and runny nose, a sore throat and even diarrhoea.

Compared with symptoms related to Hayfever, for example, you’ll notice that allergy exposure does not result in a fever, fatigue, dry cough or muscle aches and body pain. You’re likely to experience nasal congestion or flow and red, itchy eyes, says Dr. Schlemmer which is a result from exposure to pollen and other allergens. You might even suffer a sore throat.

Allergy induced coughing vs the dreaded Covid cough

With the Corona virus, our lungs are the most affected organ because the virus accesses host cells via the receptor for the enzyme angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 or ACE2. The most abundant source is on the surface of type II alveolar cells of the lungs.

Dr. Schlemmer says however, that Covid-related coughs are typically non-productive, meaning dry without any phlegm being coughed up. Allergy-related coughs tend to be productive, resulting from your post nasal drip. However, your phlegm would usually turn up clear. If you notice a discolouration in your phlegm that might be a sign to get yourself checked out by your doctor as it could be a symptom of a more serious infection.

The similarities and differences in symptoms between the corona virus and allergies are clear and distinct. We always encourage you to listen to your body and if a symptom persists, seek in person medical advice. If you ever find yourself in a situation where your symptoms escalate and you need emergency intervention, Busamed’s top notch emergency unit is ready to intervene.

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