Monday, July 4, 2022

Is it Covid or the ‘worst cold ever’? Different symptoms explained

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Woman blowing her nose
People across the country are complaining of the ‘worst cold ever’ is going around (Picture: Getty)

A severe cold, being dubbed ‘worst lurgy ever’ is going around and whether you’ve been lucky enough to dodge it, or are currently feeling under the weather with a range of cold-like ailments, we’ve got the lowdown.

Many people have been struck down with a serious cold this year after spending close to two years taking preventative measures to avoid Covid-19, like staying at home, avoiding close contact, and wearing face coverings.

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Naturally, this has impacted many people’s immune systems meaning they’re more susceptible to catching the common cold now that restrictions have lifted.

Some have complained of Covid-like systems, but how can you tell the difference?

What are the symptoms and how do they differ from Covid-19?

While the symptoms of this cold are similar to those experienced by people suffering from Covid-19, they don’t necessarily indicate you have the virus.

woman does a covid test at home
It’s always worth doing a Covid test if you show any symptoms (Picture: Getty)

Symptoms for the ‘worst cold ever’, including those reported by people on social media, involve having:

  • A sore or scratchy throat
  • Losing your voice
  • Body aches
  • Continuous headaches
  • Frequent sneezing
  • A runny nose
  • A continuous cough
  • A change in smell or taste
  • A fever or temperature from 38 degrees Celsius and above
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However, as several symptoms are also experienced by those with Covid-19, get a PCR test and stay at home if you have the following:

  • A continuous cough
  • A fever or temperature
  • A change in smell or taste

While many people suffering from Covid-19 have suffered significantly, a proportion has also likened it to a ‘bad cold’ despite testing positive for the virus. Therefore, it’s always worth getting a lateral flow or PCR test to be sure.

Retail worker Rebecca told BBC Newsbeat: ‘I barely slept, I’d wake up in the night just coughing, a constantly runny nose and feeling so tired.’

Despite testing negative for Covid-19 after taking lateral flow tests, she was ill for over a week.

While we’ve shared plenty of tips to help you treat your first cold in over a year, the key things to do include avoiding over-exerting yourself – so, put your partying on hold for a little while.

Honey Poured Over Lemon in Glass Teacup
Get sipping on hot water with honey and lemon if you’re suffering from a sore throat (Picture: Tara Higgins Hill via Getty)

Dr Philippa Kaye, a GP in London, also told the BBC people suffering with the cold should have: ‘Loads of fluids and rest, over-the-counter simple painkillers for headaches and aches and pains.

‘Even simple things like honey in a hot drink can help ease a sore throat.’

However, she does warn people to seek medical help if symptoms worsen significantly, saying: ‘If you become more unwell, if you cough up blood, have chest pain, if you have shortness of breath or chest tightness, then you need to seek medical advice.’

MORE : How to get a good night’s sleep when you have a really bad cold

MORE : When should you get the flu jab?

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