It’s Covid-19 or a Cold: How could I know?

Your kid has an irritated throat, cough, and a high fever. Is it COVID-19? Would it be a virus? Or just a cold?

This kind of sickness are brought about by infections that affect respiratory tract. All are infectious and can spread effectively from one individual to another. And they cause some similar symptons. So it tends to be difficult to tell them apart.


Colds are normally less intense than flu. A runny or stuffy nose, a sore throat, sneezing and coughing are the most common symptoms of a cold, though these symptoms are comparatively less common in flu. If there is fever than it will be mild.

The common cold can cause:

  • a runny or stuffy nose
  • sneezing
  • sore throat
  • reduced sense of smell or taste
  • cough
  • tiredness


Symptoms of COVID-19 and flu are shared or similar, it can be difficult to tell the difference. Testing is the most reliable way to determine if you have COVID-19 or flu. Both viruses can also show no symptoms in sick people.COVID-19 symptoms take longer to present, usually five days after infection, but symptoms can appear anywhere from two to 14 days after infection.

The various symptoms exhibit are:

  • fever
  • shortness of breath
  • loss of smell or taste
  • dry cough
  • fatigue
  • headache
  • body ache
  • diarrhea
  • nausea


Symptom or sign COVID-19 Cold
Tiredness Usually Sometimes
Sneezing Rarely Sometimes
Sore throat Usually Usually
Runny or stuffy nose Usually Usually

If you are still not sure whether you have have a cold or COVID-19, testing is the best way to determine the correct illnesses.

With many similar symptoms caused by the virus types, testing remains the best option to determine which one you may have. At-home tests for flu aren’t as widely available as those for COVID-19, but some pharmacies offer testing for both viruses at the same time.

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