COVID vs Cold: How to tell the difference when you're feeling sick

Pediatric practices are expanding to address the influx of families flooding offices across the DMV with sick children. But is it COVID-19 or just the common cold?

The only surefire way to know if your child is suffering from a cold or COVID is by getting tested. Even so, testing aside, there are some hints that distinguish the two.

A telltale difference between the common cold and COVID-19 is reportedly the duration of any fever. A fever associated with a cold typically lasts a couple of days. A fever associated with COVID lasts much longer.

READ MORE: DC to merge monkeypox clinics with some COVID centers

A cold typically pops up within three days of exposure. The coronavirus can surface within up to two weeks of exposure, and COVID-19 can be accompanied by stomach flu-like symptoms.

Annapolis-based PM Pediatrics Senior Advisor Dr. Christina Johns says while COVID-19 and the common cold are both caused by viruses, the common cold is caused by rhinoviruses.

Pediatricians say they’re seeing more patients earlier this year with the cold and flu. Doctors and other health officials encourage everyone who is eligible to get their COVID-19 vaccine and flu shot.