What to do if you are showing symptoms of COVID-19?

What to do if you are showing symptoms of COVID-19?

What to do if you are showing symptoms of the virus

Anyone who has symptoms of the virus must make sure that they do all they can to prevent their symptoms from worsening and to prevent it from spreading.
The general advice is for individuals to stay at home and not go outside for seven days. Anyone who lives in the same household as the individual should stay at home for 14 days unless they too develop the virus. The diagram on the next slide illustrates the stay at home periods for individuals in the same family.

How to self-isolate

Whilst people are self-isolating at home, there should not be any reason to leave home, and any exercise should be carried out within the home or the garden.

For most people, a period of self-isolation and treating the virus with simple measures will be enough because symptoms, for most, will be mild.
Individuals with mild symptoms are advised to:

  • Take Paracetamol
    Drink lots of fluids
  • Rest
  • Stay in touch with family or friends via the phone or social media
    Keep busy and exercise if they are feeling well enough to do so.

If symptoms worsen

Unfortunately for some individuals, symptoms will be more serious. In these instances, individuals are recommended to call 111 or to visit the NHS’s 111 websites to get advice on what to do.

Most people, even with moderate symptoms, will be able to remain at home, but their recovery period may be longer. It is known that for some people, symptoms do come and go, and individuals are recommended to self-isolate for as long as they feel unwell.
If symptoms are severe, then action should be taken as quickly as possible. Severe symptoms will mean that an individual is experiencing shortness of breath and/or not being able to breathe properly.

Sometimes, complications from COVID-19 may mean that an individual needs to go to the hospital, for example, if they have contracted a secondary infection like pneumonia.
In any instance, where there is a medical emergency, an ambulance should be called to transport the individual to the hospital (rather than a family member taking them to A&E) as emergency staff are equipped with special protective clothing to ensure that they do not become infected. They may also be able to treat the individual at the scene before taking them to the hospital to stabilise their symptoms depending on their severity.