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Am I suffering from seasonal allergies or COVID-19?

1st June, 2022 | Published by Saltzer Health

dandelion covid ball

Spring is a wonderful time of year but can be difficult if you suffer from seasonal allergies. The pollen count is high in the Treasure Valley and symptoms can be confusing with cases of COVID rising as well. Here is some information to help you determine what you’re suffering from. The severity of COVID-19 symptoms ranges from mild to severe. If you suspect you have COVID-19, you can be tested at one of our urgent care facilities.

COVID vs Allergies

Symptoms of COVID-19 can include:

  • Fever and/or chills
  • Cough (usually dry)
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Tiredness (sometimes)
  • Aches and pains (sometimes)
  • Headaches (sometimes)
  • Sore throat (sometimes)

*Upper respiratory symptoms, like runny nose and sinus congestion, are very uncommon in COVID-19.

Season allergies can also be prevalent this time of year, here’s what to look for:

  • Itchy nose, eyes, throat, sinuses, and ear canals
  • Fatigue (sometimes)
  • Cough
  • Sneezing
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Watery eyes
  • Headaches (sometimes)
  • Shortness of breath

The most common cause of allergies in the spring is pollen. Pollen floats through the air from a variety of plants. Pollen is nearly invisible to the eye but can wreak havoc on your body’s immune system. If you have springtime allergies, your body’s immune system is releasing antibodies to fight the allergens in your body. This will release histamines in your blood that trigger things like a runny nose or itchy eyes. You may experience more allergy symptoms on windy days when pollen counts are high.

Beyond basic prevention, there are also things you can do to help alleviate the symptoms of your springtime allergies. Over-the-counter medications such as antihistamines and decongestants can help reduce sneezing, itching, and congestion. You may also find relief with a nasal spray that can help decongest or ease inflammation in your sinuses. In addition, eye drops may also help relieve itchy or watery eyes.

 

Walk-in at one of our urgent care facilities or call today for help with either seasonal allergies or testing for COVID-19.

208-463-3000