Health Department emphasizes testing amidst similarities between fall allergies and COVID-19

Published 12:07 am Wednesday, October 18, 2023

Rowan County Public Health Department News Service

ROWAN COUNTY — As the fall season settles in, Rowan County Public Health Department is urging residents to remain vigilant about their health by recognizing the similarities between fall allergy symptoms and those of COVID-19. With the ongoing pandemic, it is crucial for everyone to stay informed and take the necessary precautions, including testing, to prevent the spread of the virus.

Fall allergies, often triggered by pollen and mold spores, can manifest in symptoms that resemble those of COVID-19. These shared symptoms include sneezing, congestion, runny nose, sore throat, fatigue and trouble sleeping. This overlap in symptoms can be confusing, but it is important to remember that both allergies and COVID-19 can have serious health implications, making it essential to differentiate between the two. Individuals with COVID-19 may experience some key symptoms that are uncommon with seasonal allergies like fevers, body aches and gastrointestinal symptoms such as diarrhea.

The Rowan County Public Health Department is encouraging residents to:

  • Be aware: Recognize that fall allergies can cause symptoms similar to COVID-19, especially when seasonal allergens are prevalent.
  • Get tested: If you experience any of these symptoms, it is crucial to get tested for COVID-19. Free at home COVID-19 tests are readily available at the Rowan County Public Health Department. Testing is the best way to confirm whether your symptoms are due to allergies or a COVID-19 infection.
  • Follow safety measures: Continue to adhere to safety guidelines and take preventive measures, such as wearing masks, practicing good hand hygiene, maintaining physical distancing, and getting vaccinated to reduce the risk of contracting or spreading the virus.
  • Vaccination: Keeping up to date with your vaccinations is the best protection against COVID-19-related hospitalization and death. Vaccination also reduces the chance of suffering the effects of long COVID, which can develop during or following acute infection and last for an extended duration.  If you have not received a COVID-19 vaccine in the past two months, get an updated COVID-19 vaccine to protect yourself this fall and winter.

In the face of the ongoing pandemic, Rowan County Public Health Department underscores the importance of early detection and testing as essential tools in the fight against COVID-19. By staying informed, getting tested, and following recommended safety measures, we can collectively protect our community and continue to mitigate the impact of this virus.

For more information or free at-home COVID-19 tests, call 980-432-1800.