How to differentiate the symptoms of Covid-19 and a respiratory allergy?

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With the arrival of good weather and pollen responsible for the more or less severe respiratory allergies in the territory, it is important not to confuse the respiratory signs of the coronavirus with those of rhinitis and allergic asthma.

At the beginning of spring, the first signs of allergic rhinitis may appear. In the context of a Covid-19 coronavirus viral epidemic, people affected by this type of allergy may be confused, but in reality, the symptoms differ slightly.

The main symptoms of allergic rhinitis.

In fact, air allergy can manifest as allergic rhinitis characterized by attacks of sneezing, runny or stuffy nose regularly, and itchy nostrils. Allergic rhinitis caused by grass pollen occurs every year. In addition to these typical symptoms of a seasonal allergy, air allergy can also manifest as conjunctivitis and, above all, cause an asthma attack with respiratory discomfort, accompanied by wheezing and shortness of breath, associated or not with cough.

Fever and body aches make all the difference. Health professionals ask patients to adequately assess the nature of their symptoms and to think about Covid-19 only if they are different from what is commonly experienced. They also indicate that if cough can occur in people predisposed to asthma, this is not the case with fever, unlike a coronavirus infection that also causes dry cough, severe fatigue, headache, and body aches.

The other differentiator may be the unusual and different character of the cough compared to previous years.

If you have doubts about the symptoms, it is better to call your doctor or the dedicated telephone platform for it, but do not rush to see your doctor or hospital emergencies, at the risk of contributing to contamination or obstruction.

Asthmatics advise continuing to take inhaled corticosteroid therapy. People with asthma are advised not to discontinue their basic asthma therapy in the form of inhaled corticosteroids, as it helps control bronchial inflammation and decrease asthma exacerbations.

"We know that good symptom control limits the risk of developing an inflammatory asthma flare in the case of a viral infection," Asthma & Allergies said in an information point published last week. While specifying "that in case of unusual cough, respiratory discomfort and fever, at this time, it is essential to consult your doctor before starting treatment with oral cortisone."

The French Federation of Allergology wants to assure asthmatics that asthma is not a risk factor for developing more serious forms of COVID-19 if it is well controlled, particularly by inhaled corticosteroids "In fact, taking inhaled corticosteroids has never been shown to be be a risk factor for severe COVID. " "It is essential that asthmatics continue to treat themselves to control their disease," he said. This development comes after the alert of the Ministry of Health about taking certain medications, such as ibuprofen and certain corticosteroids, which could have created confusion in patients.

Good to know for people with food allergies and / or allergies to hymenopteran poisons (wasps, bees), self-injecting adrenaline pens that they should always have on themselves to urgently treat anaphylactic shock, a severe allergic reaction.

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