Coronavirus: The Symptoms and How to Lower your Risk

What are the coronavirus symptoms?

Coronavirus infects the lungs.  The two main symptoms are a fever and a dry cough, which can sometimes lead to breathing problems.

The cough to look out for is a new, continuous cough.  This means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or having three or more coughing episodes in 24 hours.  If you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual.

You have a fever if your temperature is above 37.8C.  This can make you feel warm, cold or shivery.

A sore throat, headache and diarrhoea have also been reported and a loss of smell and taste may also be a symptom.  However, a loss of taste and smell is also common if you have a cold so it is not a reliable test of whether you have coronavirus.

It takes five days on average to start showing the symptoms, but some people will get them much later.  The World Health Organization (WHO) says the incubation period lasts up to 14 days.

Lower your risk:

  • Wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds frequently, especially after coughing/sneezing.
  • Use a tissue to catch coughs and sneezes; throw the tissue away after use.
  • Avoid touching your face.

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