The difference between a normal cough and a cough with symptoms of COVID-19 and how to deal with it

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The difference between a normal cough and a cough with symptoms of COVID-19 and how to deal with it
The difference between a normal cough and a cough with symptoms of COVID-19 and how to deal with it
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Ordinary cough and cough symptoms of COVID-19 do look similar. Though, there is a slight difference between the two. So, so that you are not mistaken, it is important to recognize the characteristics of a normal cough and a COVID-19 cough so that appropriate treatment can be carried out

It is not easy to distinguish between a normal cough and a cough with symptoms of COVID-19. The reason is that the common type of cough due to the flu and COVID-19 is generally the same, namely a dry cough. However, the symptoms of a normal cough due to the flu sometimes can also be in the form of coughing up phlegm.

Difference Between Common Cough and Cough Symptoms of COVID-19 and How to Overcome Them - Alodokter

In addition, the common cough and cough symptoms of COVID-19 also have similar accompanying signs and symptoms, such as fever, sore throat, and nasal congestion.

Even so, both cough conditions need to be treated immediately to prevent the risk of transmission of COVID-19 disease and prevent the symptoms of COVID-19 or flu from getting worse.

The Difference Between Common Cough and Cough Symptoms of COVID-19

The following are the differences between a normal cough and a cough with COVID-19 symptoms based on the causes and complications that can be caused:

Based on the cause

The first thing that distinguishes a normal cough from a cough with COVID-19 symptoms is the cause. Generally, a normal cough can be caused by the flu, for example due to the influenza virus or rhinovirus, while coughing symptoms of COVID-19 are caused by the Corona virus.

Meanwhile, the length of time for cough symptoms to appear is also different. Coughing the flu usually only appears for 1-3 days after being exposed to the virus, while coughing symptoms of COVID-19 for around 2-14 days.

Even though they are different, the mode of transmission of these two coughs remains the same, namely through the air, splashes of saliva and snot (droplets), and physical contact with sick people.

Based on the complications that can be caused

Common cough due to flu can heal within a few days to a few weeks. However, if your cough has lasted more than 3 weeks, it is categorized as a chronic cough. This long-lasting cough is more common in people with asthma, COPD, or sinusitis.

If not treated properly, the flu that causes a common cough can sometimes lead to a number of complications, such as pneumonia.

On the other hand, COVID-19 which causes coughing symptoms also has the potential to cause complications in the form of pneumonia and ARDS.However, the risk of these complications is higher in patients who have not received the COVID-19 vaccine, have comorbid diseases, or are elderly.

In certain cases, COVID-19 can also cause symptoms or he alth problems that last a long time, even after the infection has cleared, such as anosmia, parosmia, and long-haul COVID-19.

How to Treat Common Cough and Cough Symptoms of COVID-19

It is important to know that cough management needs to be adjusted to the type of cough and its cause. There are two types of cough, namely dry cough and cough with phlegm, while the cause can be a non-infectious disease, such as asthma and allergies, it can also be an infection, such as the flu or COVID-19.

In ordinary coughs and COVID-19 with mild symptoms, treatment steps are only symptomatic or to relieve symptoms. Therefore, the use of cough medicine can be done to overcome the symptoms of cough due to COVID-19.

According to a number of studies, antitussive cough medicines, such as dextromethorphan, are considered to be able to treat dry coughs in normal coughs and coughs with symptoms of COVID-19. Not only that, the combination of dextromethorphan and guaifenesin is also known to treat coughs due to flu and COVID-19 accompanied by phlegm.

You can also take pain relievers, such as paracetamol, to reduce muscle aches and headaches, both due to flu and COVID-19. Paracetamol can also be taken to relieve fever.

In addition to the several types of drugs above, other medicines, such as pseudoephedrine and chlorpheniramine maleate, can also be taken to treat cough symptoms accompanied by a runny nose or stuffy nose.

It is important to know, the use of antibiotics is considered less effective because it cannot treat coughs caused by viral infections. Meanwhile, in cases of cough which is a symptom of COVID-19, it may be necessary to take antiviral treatment from a doctor, such as remdesivir.

Prevention of Common Cough and Cough Symptoms of COVID-19

To avoid coughing, both due to flu and COVID-19, it is important for you to take preventive steps so that the body is not easily infected with the virus that causes coughing.

Some of the preventive steps you can take are to undergo vaccinations, such as the influenza vaccine and COVID-19 vaccine, and to follow the 5M protocol, which is to wear a mask, wash your hands, keep your distance, stay away from crowds, and limit mobility and interactions.

You are also advised to stop smoking and stay away from cigarette smoke to prevent coughing and relieve the cough you are experiencing.

If your cough doesn't go away or is accompanied by other symptoms, such as fever, stuffy nose, or sore throat, immediately consult a doctor to get the right treatment. Doctors can also explain further about the difference between a normal cough and a cough with symptoms of COVID-19.

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