COVID-19 symptoms

Last modified: 
Tue, 11/10/2020 - 07:44

Most people with COVID-19 have mild to moderate symptoms and recover without needing to go to the hospital. (World Health Organization)

Most people with COVID-19 are experiencing any of these symptoms: 

  • Fever
  • New or worsening cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Generally feeling unwell
  • Chills
  • Muscle aches
  • Fatigue or weakness
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Headache
  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Loss of sense of smell/taste
  • Skin changes or rashes
  • Loss of appetite

Individuals experiencing any of the symptoms that are listed above should call their local health centre.  

Severe cases may have:

  • Difficulty breathing
  • Severe acute respiratory distress syndrome.

Anyone who is experiencing severe symptoms is advised to call 9-1-1.

Risk of severe disease is higher for:

  • Older adults
  • People with chronic disease (for example: diabetes, cancer, heart, renal, or chronic lung disease)
  • Those with weakened immune systems

Time for symptoms to appear

Symptoms may take up to 14 days to appear after exposure. 

You can infect others even if you aren’t showing symptoms

The virus can be spread to others from someone who’s infected but not showing symptoms. This includes people who:

  • haven’t yet developed symptoms (pre-symptomatic)
  • never develop symptoms (asymptomatic)

This kind of spread is known to happen among those who are in close contact or are in enclosed or crowded settings.

Frequently Asked Questions