COVID-19 symptoms include:

  • Cough: a new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or three or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual)
  • High temperature: this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back, or you have measured your temperature and recorded a high result (typically above 38°C is considered a fever)
  • Unexplained loss of taste or smell: a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste – this means you’ve noticed you cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal
  • Shortness of breath
  • Muscle aches
  • Sore throat
  • Diarrhoea
  • Headache

How does it spread?

Coronavirus is primarily spread by small droplets that are expelled from the nose and mouth when someone that is infected coughs, sneezes or speaks
This can then be breathed in by others or picked up from surfaces and transferred from your hand to your eyes, nose or mouth if you touch them
COVID-19 doesn’t transmit through skin contact on your hand, but rather when bacteria enters your system through mucous membranes on your body or via respiratory droplets in close proximity
Research suggests that you can be infectious up to a week before any symptoms show. Although showing these symptoms does not necessarily mean you have contracted the virus, you should follow the guidance and self-isolate as soon as you show symptoms. It is also a good idea to let others you may have been in contact with know, as they may also need to self-isolate

2. What are the signs and symptoms and how does it spread?