Doctor explains the difference between Covid and common cold symptoms

23 September 2021, 10:27

A doctor on This Morning has explained how Covid symptoms have changed since the vaccine roll out.

With winter drawing in, a doctor has now explained how you can tell the difference between Covid and a common cold.

While the symptoms can look very similar, Professor Tim Spector appeared on This Morning on Wednesday to clear up any confusion.

Speaking to hosts Philip Schofield and Holly Willoughby, Tim explained that the symptoms for coronavirus have changed following the roll out of the vaccine.

Professor Tim Spector appeared on This Morning
Professor Tim Spector appeared on This Morning. Picture: ITV

He said: "Many people - perhaps up to half of cases - are going unrecognised because they basically have symptoms that are very cold-like.

"So headache, sore throat, runny nose, sneezing - and the only one that gets into the top five is loss of smell or taste.

"We're now seeing that fever is very low down on the ranking of what we're seeing at the moment. Even rarer are things like shortness of breath or a persistent cough.

"It's a combination of factors but we've got to face the reality which is, most people out there with Covid are presenting with cold-like symptoms."

Common cold and Covid symptoms cross over
Common cold and Covid symptoms cross over. Picture: Alamy

Government guidelines currently state the main symptoms of coronavirus are a high temperature, a new, continuous cough and a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste.

Tim continued: "So we have a million people each week giving us their data and telling us whether they're testing positive or negative and - of those testing positive - we're seeing a completely different picture of the common symptoms.”

Phillip went on to ask whether the UK should be put in lockdown again over the cold symptoms, to which he responded: "It's going to be very hard to tell and we're going to have to be honest and work out a practical way around this.”

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the common cold and coronavirus have some very similar symptoms including a cough, shortness of breath or breathing difficulties, fatigue, headaches, a sore throat and blocked nose.

You can find out more about Covid guidance on the government website here.