Health

The two early COVID symptoms that may be ‘dark horses’ – headache and fatigue warning

COVID-19 is an infectious disease that has been confirmed in almost 40 million people across the world, while more than one million have died from the virus. If you develop any of the key coronavirus symptoms, you should get tested for the infection straight away.

The UK has seen a rise in the number of coronavirus cases over the past few weeks.

A number of councils across the country have entered into 'tier three' restrictions, in a bid to cut the infection rate.

London and Essex joined 'tier two' restrictions last weekend as the number of cases have also continued to rise.

The two earliest warning signs of COVID-19 have now been revealed, and scientists have warned that you may not even realize that you're at risk.

The "dark horses" of COVID symptoms include headaches and fatigue, according to the COVID Symptom Study app.

The two symptoms were the most commonly experienced symptoms in coronavirus patients across the UK.

Fewer than 10 percent of all patients, aged 18 to 65 years old, didn't have either a headache or fatigue, they said.

While the 'classic' three symptoms are still absolutely crucial, it's vital to look out for any unusual tiredness or headaches.

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"Our data shows that the most commonly experienced early symptoms are actually headache [82 percent] and fatigue [72 percent] - and this is the case for all age groups," it said.

"Only nine percent of COVID-positive adults aged 18-65 didn't experience headache or fatigue. Of course, headache and fatigue commonly occur in other conditions which is why they don't trigger a test on their own.

"In fact, only one percent of people who reported fatigue and/or headache on our app ended up testing positive for COVID.

"So while headache and fatigue are commonly found in people who have COVID [alongside other symptoms], having either or both of those symptoms alone is unlikely to be indicative of COVID."


Headaches and fatigue are both very common, and don't necessarily mean that you have coronavirus.

Persistent tiredness could be caused by simply not getting enough sleep, or doing too much - or too little - exercise.

Headaches, meanwhile, may be linked to the common cold, stress, bad posture, and even taking too many painkillers.

Either way, your headaches or fatigue are more likely to be caused by coronavirus if it's accompanied by any of the more common symptoms.

A high fever, a new cough, and a change to your sense of smell or taste are the most common early coronavirus symptoms.

In the UK, you should only get tested for the infection if you develop any of these symptoms.

Some patients have also reported a sore throat, headaches, and even hiccups, on top of the more common signs.

More than 42,000 people have died from coronavirus in the UK.



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