The World Health Organization (WHO) and several country-specific disease control and prevention centers had released a simple list of COVID-19 infection symptoms when the novel coronavirus was in its initial stage of spread. However, as the cases began to multiply, experts witnessed several mutated forms of the virus that brought along a broader range of symptoms experienced by patients. Some of these COVID-19 symptoms were considered mild, while others indicated a severe condition and claimed around 33.3 lakh deaths worldwide.
In general, people have mild symptoms of COVID-19 infection and their recovery is easily possible at home. Those with severe problems like breathlessness or extreme chest congestion require proper care under medical supervision. However, it is important to note that sometimes people tend to ignore the mild symptoms of COVID-19, especially without fever. This, in turn, can lead to severe problems. Not to forget that some patients do not experience any discomfort at all despite being infected.
So, what are the symptoms of infection that we need to pay attention to even when they are mild?
While one of the hallmark mild symptoms of COVID-19 in India and the world, cough is often confused with a common cold or flu. However, cough in COVID-19 infection is because the coronavirus invades the lungs, where it starts to irritate the respiratory tract and results in dry cough. This is the factor that differentiates normal coughing from COVID-19 infection. There is no phlegm or mucus with mild symptoms, however, neglecting the same can result in severe Pneumonia.
Hence, it is advisable that the patient immediately consults a doctor when dry coughing, and the usual medication is not helping.
A very common thing to see today, even in kids. It could be because of many reasons, including stress, strain in eyes, sudden change in temperature, etc. Headache accompanied by body ache and joint pain is also witnessed when you get a fever that results in fatigue.
However, it is also among the mild symptoms of COVID-19 that patients witness even after the recovery time. The prevalence of headache ranges between acute, throbbing, and severe, and is commonly an early sign of infection. So, if you experience a headache that appears out of the blue and is accompanied by other severe or mild symptoms of COVID-19, with the intensity increasing day by day, it is time to consult a doctor.
Doctors recognize fever as something beyond 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit that is common among patients. Fever could be a sign that your body is fighting a bacteria or virus to weed it out whilst developing antibodies that will protect it from the infection in future.
Owing to this, people generally think that their fever could be a sign of some other infection because they took enough precautions to keep the novel Coronavirus at bay. However, consulting a doctor or getting tested is best recommended if the fever prevails for longer than usual, along with other mild symptoms of COVID-19, despite taking medicines.
4. Loss of smell or taste
As mentioned earlier, coronavirus infects the lungs, and hence its symptoms may appear similar to that of any other lung infection, especially the common cold, Pneumonia, or Tuberculosis. Loss of taste and smell is among those symptoms that are often neglected by patients. Both doctors and patients get to understand the difference when they closely monitor the symptoms and also conduct a proper test.
However, what differentiates this symptom from usual infection to coronavirus infection is that normal infection only brings a slight variation in smell or taste, but coronavirus infection takes away your ability to sense a smell or taste.
The majority of viral infections cause fatigue because all the energy produced by the body is being utilized to fight the virus. More infectious the virus, the stronger the body’s efforts to fight back and get rid of it. This leaves you completely exhausted with a feeling of tiredness and sluggishness.
Owing to this, fatigue is among the most commonly neglected mild symptoms of coronavirus infection. But, the patient should immediately get checked when it is combined with other symptoms that are a clear sign of COVID-19 knocking on the door.
6. Runny nose
According to medical experts, a runny nose is not commonly witnessed among COVID-19 patients. However, it is a common symptom with plenty of other lung infections like common cold or flu, which, in turn, can make the patients think that it is anything else but a mild symptom of coronavirus infection.
So, you may not have to rush to a doctor with a runny nose alone, assuming that you are infected with COVID-19. But, it may need medical supervision and proper treatment when accompanied by other symptoms like fever, body ache, nausea, etc.
Diarrhoea accompanied by nausea, and vomiting are among the common symptoms of COVID-19 that are considered mild without fever. However, medical experts are yet to find the reason behind it. Some say that it is because of the increased drainage from post-nasal drip into the stomach, that leads to a feeling of nausea or vomiting, and sometimes even an upset stomach. It could also be the way this virus keeps on mutating and thus, affecting people in different ways.
Whatever the reason be, it is advisable to stay aware and take extra precautions until the virus completely vanishes.
8. Hearing Impairment
According to a study published in the International Journal of Audiology, hearing impairment is among the mild symptoms of COVID-19 either caused during or after recovery duration. There are a total of 56 studies that identified an association between COVID-19 infection and auditory problems.
However, some patients with extreme chest congestion or common cold also complain of hearing impairment accompanied by loss of smell or taste. This causes patients to think it is something usual or completely neglect the situation. So, if you or any of your family members have this symptom accompanied by other signs, it is time to consult a doctor.
9. Red eyes
Redness, swelling or puffiness in the eyes is common due to many reasons. However, it is also a mild sign of several viral infections, including COVID-19. Though not a very common symptom among patients, it has happened to many before as per medical experts, either at the initial stage or during the recovery period.
So, if you witness sudden discomfort in the eyes, including pain, redness, itchiness, etc., then you should consult a doctor, especially when there are other signs or symptoms of coronavirus infection.
10. Brain fog
Many times people witness that they have lost their ability to think. They may feel confused or disorganized or even find it hard to focus and put their thoughts into words. In general, brain fog is not a medical condition and can be a result of a hectic schedule that leaves you overworked.
Otherwise not very serious, one needs to consult a doctor when it is accompanied by other COVID-19 symptoms like headache, nausea, fever, etc. Many patients experience a period of brain fog during the treatment or after the recovery.
With the rising cases of COVID-19 all over the world, we need to stay safe and aware to be able to fight the virus or protect ourselves from getting affected in the first place.
If you have senior citizens at home and are looking for elder healthcare services to keep them safe in these unprecedented times, get in touch with Emoha. We have trained experts who understand the needs of elders and perfectly cater to their requirements. We always believe in keeping #Eldersfirst.