COVID-19 testing

A Texas National Guard medic pulls a swab from packaging to administer a COVID-19 test at a mobile walk-up testing site at the Victoria Community Center in 2020.

Q: What are the differences between virus and seasonal allergies?

A: The coronavirus and seasonal allergies have overlapping symptoms that can make it difficult to know if you have been infected with the respiratory disease or are experiencing an allergic response to pollen released into the air by trees, grasses and ragweed.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, symptoms that overlap include cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fatigue, headache, sore throat and congestion or runny nose.

Symptoms common of the coronavirus and not common of seasonal allergies include fever and chills, muscle and body aches, new loss of taste or smell, nausea or vomiting and diarrhea.

Itchy or watery eyes and sneezing are more commonly symptoms of seasonal allergies than COVID-19, the CDC said.

Symptoms vary from person to person and can range from mild to severe. You can also have symptoms of both COVID-19 and seasonal allergies at the same time, according to the CDC

Because some of the symptoms are similar and can overlap, the CDC recommends getting tested for the coronavirus if you have any symptoms of the respiratory disease.

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