Many people have been infected with COVID-19 since the start of the worldwide pandemic in 2020. While the vaccine has helped with the number of infected individuals, there are still many individuals affected by the infection. Common COVID-19 symptoms are:
- Fever or chills
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Muscle or body aches
Symptoms vary depending on the strain of COVID and the individual; some people are completely asymptomatic while others are hospitalized because of the severity of their infection. Because of the potentially adverse reaction that some people have to COVID, it is imperative to test as soon as you start feeling sick or have been in contact with someone known to be infected and to quarantine for the length of time recommended by your doctor.
Once you have had COVID, you are said to be protected (at least for a while) by the natural antibodies from having the infection. However, many people are experiencing post-COVID conditions that are impacting them long after they contracted the infection. For those who have endured COVID-19, something to watch out for is post-COVID conditions, otherwise known as Long COVID. According to the CDC, symptoms of Long COVID include but are not limited to:
- Ongoing fatigue that interferes with daily life
- Symptoms that worsen after physical or mental exertion
- Respiratory issues (cough, shortness of breath, chest pain)
- Brain fog
- Difficulty sleeping
- Change in taste or smell
- Joint and/or muscle pain
- Changes in menstrual cycles
So far, it has been observed that Long COVID is more likely to occur in individuals with more severe cases of the infection. Those who have not been vaccinated against COVID-19 also may be more likely to experience post-COVID conditions, though anyone who has been infected can develop Long COVID.
If you are experiencing symptoms you believe to be Long-COVID related, it is important to seek advice from a medical professional. Schedule an appointment with your healthcare provider, and to prepare for your appointment, compile a list of information such as:
- When you were infected with COVID
- The severity of your COVID infection
- Symptoms experienced during the infection
- Current and ongoing symptoms
- A list of current medications
- Any questions you may have
The best way to protect yourself and others against Long COVID is to avoid contracting and spreading COVID through social distancing, vaccinating and quarantining when necessary.
Since COVID-19 is still a very new infection that continues to be studied, there isn’t a lot of information on Long COVID yet. However, please don’t hesitate to reach out if you have questions or need to talk to someone. Apex Health is here for you! Visit our website or contact us to learn more.