Kenya currently has 208 positive cases of coronavirus, 9 deaths and 40 recoveries with hundreds of others in isolation.
The immediate symptoms for COVID-19 were initially linked to flu-like symptoms, although some patients have tested positive with no indications of any symptoms. Scientists have discovered other abnormal symptoms that appear between two days to 14 days after exposure.
Here are the symptoms:
1 Shortness of Breath.
Shortness of breath indicates the severity of COVID-19 and in most cases it is the most serious. When a loved one exhibits this symptom and finds it hard to breathe, it is time to seek medical attention from experts. According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), persistent pain or pressure in the chest is a cause for alarm.
2. Dry Cough
A dry persistent cough has been proven to be among the early signs of COVID-19 with a little irritation in the throat. Further, the cough is usually bothersome and tickling to the throat leading to discomfort. When this is persistent, it is time to see the doctor.
Fever has also been indicated as a key sign of COVID-19 although it can easily be confused with other infectious diseases. However, when the body temperature runs quite high or more than normal, it is high time to visit the hospital and get tested.
According to an online health expert, one should not rely on the temperature taken early in the morning rather the one taken late in the afternoon or evening.
4. Body Aches.
This has been proven to be a symptom witnessed on the majority of people who did not think they had contracted the virus. According to health experts, the body aches and chillness come out at night and a person would feel like they are being beaten or hit. However, not everyone will have such severe reactions but it is safe to see a doctor once you exhibit such a symptom.
5. Loss of Smell and Taste.
This symptom has been linked to shortness of breath and has been categorized as one of the unusual signs. According to an expert who talked to CNN, the symptom has been witnessed by several COVID-19 patients who had lost the touch of taste and smell. Further, the experts have indicated that the patients who tested positive for the virus without exhibiting any serious symptoms complained of a lack of taste and smell.
For instance, an analysis of milder cases in South Korea revealed the major presenting symptom in 30% of patients was a loss of smell. To ascertain this, one is encouraged to try home tests by trying to smell some scented things in the house, and lack of it is an indication to get tested or see an expert.
6. Digestive Issues.
This symptom, according to scientists and research experts is a very unusual one as it was initially not considered part of the signs. Further upon research, diarrhea and other typical gastric issues have been equated to contracting the virus.
For instance, research into the early patients to have contracted COVID-19 in China revealed that almost half the patients had complained of gastric related issues.
“In a study out of China where they looked at some of the earliest patients, some 200 patients, they found that digestive or stomach GI (gastrointestinal) symptoms were actually there in about half the patients,” Gupta is quoted by CNN.
Apparently, the symptoms keep changing depending on the individuals as well as the severity of the situation.
7. General Fatigue.
Fatigue is mostly associated with infectious diseases more so the respiratory ones. According to WHO, fatigue has been identified among the symptoms of COVID-19 after nearly half the patients in a laboratory ward complained of the same.
Fatigue has been explained to be witnessed before testing positive for the virus and even afterward in quarantine. It is also said to continue long after the virus is gone, with patients complaining of lack of energy and are into naps.
8. Pink Eye.
Conjunctivitis, commonly known as the pink eye has recently been linked to COVID-19 as research in China and South Korea linked it to about 1 or 3 percent of the patients.
However, a pink or red eye might not necessarily indicate that one has contracted the virus. A visit to the doctor would be essential in ascertaining the cause of the infection.
The inability to be alert in certain environments and situations has recently been linked to one of the severe symptoms of COVID-19. In other cases, patients have been reported to hallucinate and completely go blank. Who recommends that when a loved one has problems with waking up and being alert, emergency services should be sought immediately.
10. Headache, Sore throat and Congestion.
According to a report by WHO, 14% of almost 6,000 COVID-19 cases exhibited headaches and sore throat while 5 % reported nasal congestion. Just like the symptoms experienced in flu, an individual tends to have headaches and the nasal is congested, with a sore throat.
However, the severity of these symptoms calls for medical attention. In other cases, it might just be flu or another infection.
What To Do.
Initially, WHO reported that majority of people at risk of contracting COVID-19 were the elderly as the immunity weakens with age and those with underlying medical conditions that have weakened their immunity.
The first step in protecting oneself and their loved ones is to isolate and avoid gatherings. Staying at home has proven effective as it minimizes contact with other people. Ideally, when one is suspicious or exhibits any of the symptoms at an early stage they should immediately seek medical attention and keep away from other family members.
CDC also states, “Older patients and individuals who have underlying medical conditions or are immunocompromised should contact their physician early in the course of even mild illness.”
However, there is a misconception that younger people cannot contract the virus. This is a myth as one is at a higher risk whether young or old with underlying health issues.
WHO further advises individuals who have testing centers near them to get tested despite not exhibiting severe symptoms.
In a publication by CNN, one of the times you are most vulnerable to contracting the virus is while you’re sleeping. Here are ways you can reduce contracting it while sleeping.
- Avoid sleeping while facing someone. Rather, sleep alone if possible.
- Move away from people breathing in your face.
- Dress warmly so you can seek blowing air, even when it’s cold.
- Sleep in well-ventilated rooms.
- Wash your hands and face with warm water before going to sleep.
- Gently blow your nose with a clean cloth before going to bed.
- Brush your teeth and tongue, spit and gaggle an antiseptic mouthwash.