The global impact of COVID-19, specifically the latest variants, JN.1 and HV.1, is undeniable. While our knowledge about COVID-19 has grown, it's essential to acknowledge that not every symptom we experience is necessarily linked to this virus.
Amid the winter season, various illnesses present symptoms like sore throats, and one such concern is strep throat. AFC Urgent Care New Bedford aims to guide you through distinguishing between COVID-19 and strep throat with this informative guide.
Unveiling the Causes
COVID-19, caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus discovered in December 2019, primarily manifests respiratory symptoms akin to a cold, flu, or pneumonia. In contrast, strep throat results from a bacterial infection caused by group A Streptococcus bacteria, transmitted through respiratory droplets and direct contact.
Examining Symptoms: Strep Throat vs. COVID-19
Strep throat, though often seen as a mild infection, can be quite painful. Symptoms include a rapid onset of sore throat, pain when swallowing, fever, and red or swollen tonsils. Additional symptoms may involve a headache, stomach pain, nausea, or vomiting, especially in children.
In contrast, COVID-19 symptoms span a wide range, affecting the respiratory system and beyond. From fever, cough, and shortness of breath to fatigue, muscle aches, and loss of taste or smell, COVID-19 manifests differently in individuals. It's crucial to recognize that symptoms may vary with the virus's variants, with the latest being JN.1 and HV.1.
The Role of Testing
Testing is pivotal in identifying the cause of a sore throat. A rapid throat swab test for strep, while slightly uncomfortable, is quick and painless. If positive, AFC Urgent Care New Bedford can promptly prescribe antibiotics for same-day treatment. The importance of testing for both COVID-19 and strep throat is emphasized, aligning with the saying "better safe than sorry."
Accessible Testing at AFC Urgent Care New Bedford
Suspecting strep throat? AFC Urgent Care in New Bedford offers rapid throat swab tests for strep, alongside COVID Antigen tests and rapid molecular tests for COVID-19, providing same-day results. Completing the prescribed antibiotic course for strep throat is essential to prevent bacterial resurgence and resistance.
AFC Urgent Care New Bedford is here for you every day of the week, catering to both scheduled appointments and walk-ins. We accept most insurance plans, ensuring that our healthcare services are accessible and timely. Utilize our convenient online payment system – just a few clicks, and you can easily handle your bill. Count on us to deliver reliable and prompt healthcare services tailored to meet your individual needs.