Is It Covid-19, Allergies, Or Post-Vaccine Symptoms? How To Tell The Difference

Spring is upon us, and COVID-19 is still a concern despite increasing rates of vaccination. So how can you know if your symptoms are from the virus, allergies, or are just post-vaccine side effects? Dr. Fred Lewis is an emergency department physician at Northwell Health Long Island Jewish medical center, and says that allergies and fever are big clues, as allergies do not usually cause a fever, but they do make you feel itchy.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) also notes that while both allergies and the coronavirus can cause coughing; shortness of breath; fatigue; headache; sore throat; congestion or a runny nose, symptoms such as a fever and chills; muscle and body aches; a new loss of taste or smell; nausea; vomiting and/or diarrhea are more common with a COVID-19 infection.

As far as post-vaccination side effects go, Dr. John Whyte with WebMD says the “side effects typically are a pain in the arm, fatigue, and sometimes headache. It’s all about timing; they occur typically 4 hours or so after vaccination and will resolve within 24-36 hours.” He adds and both allergies and coronavirus do not resolve that quickly. Overall, if you are unsure if you’ve been infected by COVID-19, the CDC recommends getting tested and following guidelines to avoid spreading the disease.