Beware of Ageusia Symptoms in COVID-19

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Beware of Ageusia Symptoms in COVID-19
Beware of Ageusia Symptoms in COVID-19

Ageusia in COVID-19 is marked by the loss of the sense of taste. Although it is not a dangerous symptom, ageusia can make it difficult for sufferers to recognize proper food for consumption and are at risk of nutritional deficiencies due to decreased appetite

Ageusia is a term used to describe the total loss of taste buds. This makes people who experience it unable to taste any taste from the food or drink they consume.

Beware of Ageusia Symptoms in COVID-19 - Alodokter

So far, several studies have shown that ageusia often occurs on the 4th day after the initial symptoms of Corona virus infection appear, such as headache, fever, and cough.

Ageusia usually subsides within 7–21 days. However, these symptoms may persist even though the patient with COVID-19 has been declared cured.

In addition to Corona virus infection, ageusia can also be experienced by people who have other he alth problems, such as zinc deficiency, diabetes, Crohn's disease, or hypothyroidism.

Causes of Ageusia in COVID-19

Until now, the cause of ageusia in patients with COVID-19 is not known for certain. However, it is suspected that this condition is related to ACE2 (angiotensin converting enzyme 2) which can be found in all parts of the oral cavity, especially the surface of the tongue.

One of the roles of ACE2 is to help the tongue to recognize different types of taste. However, on the other hand, this enzyme is also referred to as the door for the Corona virus to enter the body.

This is because the Corona virus infects the human body by binding itself to ACE2. This binding process will damage the taste cells on the tongue, so that the tongue loses its ability to recognize tastes.

In addition, another possible cause of ageusia is the loss of the sense of smell in patients with COVID-19 due to the entry of the Corona virus into the body through the nasal cavity.

When the sense of smell cannot detect the aroma of the food being consumed, the sense of taste will also find it difficult to recognize the taste of the food. This is the reason why some people with COVID-19 experience ageusia and anosmia at the same time.

How to Process Food When Experiencing Ageusia

Ageusia is actually a harmless symptom of COVID-19. However, the loss of the sense of taste in detecting taste will cause COVID-19 sufferers to have difficulty recognizing food that is still fit for consumption.

This condition puts COVID-19 sufferers at risk of poisoning due to accidentally consuming food contaminated with germs, especially if the patient is self-isolating and preparing his own food.

The following is a guide to processing food if you are suffering from COVID-19 and experiencing ageusia:

  • Wash hands, cooking utensils, and food utensils using soap and running water, both before and after use.
  • Clean the ingredients before cooking them.
  • Avoid cooking food ingredients, such as meat, chicken, seafood, or vegetables that have changed color and texture.
  • Make sure the ingredients are cooked evenly, especially when cooking meat, chicken, eggs and seafood.

If you want to eat packaged food, make sure the food has not passed the expiration date. Packaged food or drinks should also be used immediately after opening the lid. If there's any left, keep it in the refrigerator.

In addition, raw foodstuffs that are easily contaminated, such as meat and fish, must be stored separately in the freezer. This is important because bacteria can transfer easily from raw food and contaminate cooked food.

How to Increase Appetite When Experiencing Ageusia

Not only is it difficult to process food, ageusia can also cause COVID-19 sufferers to have no appetite to eat. In fact, the intake of nutritious food is very necessary to increase the body's immunity in fighting Corona virus infection.

To increase appetite when experiencing ageusia, COVID-19 sufferers can try several ways, such as using brightly colored food ingredients to make cooking look more attractive or choosing to eat foods that are wanted or favored.

Meanwhile, if ageusia complaints are not accompanied by a loss of sense of smell, kitchen herbs or spices with a strong aroma can be mixed into food to stimulate the brain to recall the taste of the food being consumed.Thus, your appetite can increase.

Ageusia in COVID-19 is not a dangerous symptom. However, this condition also should not be ignored, especially if it has caused you to lose your appetite, resulting in weight loss or even malnutrition. Therefore, consult a doctor if you experience it.

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