Allergies or COVID-19? How to tell the difference

Published: Jul. 27, 2021 at 6:24 PM CDT
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PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - You’re suddenly reaching for tissues and your head feels heavier than a bowling ball. Is it just seasonal allergies or is it early signs of COVID-19? Spotting the differences can be tough.

With pollen in the air and allergy season in full bloom, having itchy eyes and a runny nose isn’t uncommon.

“Usually the patient that has allergies, most of the time they come just with the sniffling, congestion and coughing,” Dr. Marwan Obid said.

Dr. Obid with Obid Allergy and Respiratory Center in Panama City said these can also be early signs of COVID-19.

“If they start having a fever or shortness of breath, or they start coughing more than usual. And then those people we prefer to have a testing to be sure everything’s okay,” Dr. Obid said.

While a dry cough and congestion can be signs of both allergies or COVID-19, health experts said a fever is one of the quickest ways of telling the difference.

“If they don’t have a fever and they have a vaccination, usually those are allergy symptoms more than anything else,” Dr. Obid said.

But the best way to find out is by getting a COVID test. PanCare Health is providing free COVID-19 testing. You just have to book an appointment online.

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