NHS adds nine new official Covid symptoms including tiredness and headaches

5 April 2022, 14:55

The NHS has added nine new official Covid symptoms
The NHS has added nine new official Covid symptoms. Picture: Getty Images
Naomi Bartram

By Naomi Bartram

A list of new Covid symptoms have been added to the NHS website.

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The NHS has now added nine new official coronavirus symptoms, just as free lateral flow tests have been axed.

Two years after the first lockdown, the list has been extended from the three official markers previously recorded in the UK.

Before, the only Covid symptoms on the NHS website were a high temperature, a new, continuous cough and a loss or change to the sense of smell or taste.

There are new official Covid symptoms
There are new official Covid symptoms. Picture: Alamy

The new list of symptoms includes the three above, as well as the following:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Feeling tired or exhausted
  • An aching body
  • A headache
  • A sore throat
  • A blocked or runny nose
  • Loss of appetite
  • Diarrhoea
  • Feeling sick or being sick

The NHS website also adds: “The symptoms are very similar to symptoms of other illnesses, such as colds and flu.”

According to the Zoe Covid symptom tracker, while a loss of smell and taste is common with the Delta variant, only one in five people who contract the Omicron variant experience this.

The World Health Organisation and the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention have had longer symptom lists for months.

This comes after free universal testing for Covid ended in England on 1 April.

Most people will now need to buy tests, with Boots and Superdrug selling lateral flows for around £1.99.

The Covid guidance has changed in England
The Covid guidance has changed in England. Picture: Alamy

Health and social care secretary Sajid Javid confirmed that free tests will continue to be available for those who are vulnerable, as well as NHS staff and adult social care staff.

Under new guidance, it also means that anyone exhibiting any symptoms is simply advised to stay home and avoid contact with other people.

The government website states: “If you have symptoms of a respiratory infection, such as COVID-19, and you have a high temperature or you do not feel well enough to go to work or carry out normal activities, you are advised to try to stay at home and avoid contact with other people.”