The notorious coronavirus has lots of symptoms, but the way that it affects your body through all the different stages isn’t commonly known. With so many people being infected by COVID-19 around the world, it’s important to stay aware on-up-to date info in case you’re at risk of getting it yourself. To prevent this pandemic from worsening, try to eat a healthy diet, avoid contact with others, social distance, and don’t touch your face. And of course: wash your hands!
1. It enters the system
This is the very first part of being infected by COVID before it’s even noticeable to us. It comes into our respiratory systems through airborne events like a sneeze or a cough. It can also be caused by touching contaminated surfaces and then touching the face. The three stages are viral replication, immune hyperactivity, and pulmonary (or lung) destruction.
2. It’s asymptomatic at times
Sometimes people don’t have any symptoms at all, and other times the onset is significantly delayed. The “incubation time” aka how long it takes to become visible is between 2 and 14 days, with most people averaging to about a week. It can take this amount of days for symptoms to develop, and since people think they’re totally fine, it’s when the virus is spread most frequently.
3. A cell takeover
This is when it starts getting not too enjoyable. Your respiratory tract is assaulted by COVID-19, and the virus totally overtakes your cells’ functions, causing the virus to proliferate and spread everywhere. A stronger immune system can limit spread and severity.
4. Problems breathing
This is one of the worst symptoms and the scariest — after all, no one wants to feel like they’re gasping for life. COVID is infamous for causing breathing difficulties, as bronchioles are constricted and airflow is therefore limited. Shortness of breath and coughing are common side effects of the illness.
5. A tougher time fighting back for those with conditions
Unfortunately, if you have an underlying condition, it can make your COVID much worse, transforming it from a mild upper respiratory infection to severe pneumonia and a life or death situation. These conditions include seniors, immunosuppressed individuals, and people with cancer, diabetes, heart problems, or high blood pressure.
6. Most people can heal
Even though things have the potential to get bad, that doesn’t necessarily mean that they will. Doctors say that the majority of cases are minor, and even if they’re slightly worse, they can get better. The deaths mostly occur in elderly individuals or those with serious underlying health conditions.
7. A boatload of other side effects
Besides the coughing and shortness of breath, symptoms can include, chills, fatigue, a fever (used to fight the infection) , headaches, runny noses, and nausea or diarrhea. Basically the flu, but way worse.
8. Loss of smell and taste
This is one of the strangest and most surprising side effects. People say that they occur not just after contracting COVID-19, but remain long after the illness has left their body. We think about food 90% of the time, so this truly sounds terrifying!
9. Some patients suffer long after the infection is gone
These people are called “long-haulers” and suffer symptoms for weeks, months, or even longer. They stand out from the statistic that COVID only seriously affects a small percentage of folks. That’s why many are calling it a systemic illness rather than just a respiratory illness.
10. There’s no standard protocol
Unfortunately, this disease is not a one-size-fits-all situation. The cases range for every different person, and both doctors and the public still have a lot to learn about the virus. So even though many places have returned to normal, it’s important to still be cautious until more knowledge on COVID is uncovered.
11. What to do if you think you have COVID or get diagnosed
If you get diagnosed or come down with flu-like symptoms, coughs, or high temps, make sure you take certain precautions to get better quickly and avoid transmission of the disease. Firstly, stay hydrated and drink as much warm fluids and water as possible. Be sure to separate yourself from other members of your household and never share personal items. Wash your hands and wear a face mask all the time.
12. What to do if symptoms worsen
Don’t drop everything and run to the local hospital or doctor’s office. Due to this pandemic, special measures are in place for this situation. If your symptoms are becoming unbearable and you’re having trouble breathing, seek care by calling the hospital or your physicians. After 7 days, if you don’t have a fever and if other symptoms have improved, you may leave the house.