The Differences Between Strep Throat And a Sore Throat Caused by COVID-19

January 31, 2022

The Differences Between Strep Throat And A Sore Throat Caused by COVID-19 By AFC Urgent Care Norwalk

Connecticut is now entering the second half of winter with freezing temperatures. At the same time we’re dealing with a resurgence of COVID-19 cases from the Omicron variant. It’s so easy to confuse COVID-19 with any sickness in the book. Winter is filled with illnesses like the flu, colds and even strep throat, and at AFC Urgent Care Norwalk we’re seeing it all.

Sore throats are usually associated with strep throat or a cold, but with COVID-19 around, it’s easy to jump to the conclusion that it’s COVID. AFC Urgent Care Norwalk understands it’s a confusing time and wants to help you navigate from sore throats from COVID-19 and Strep Throat. Here are the differences: 

 

Strep Throat is Not A Symptom Of COVID-19

Let’s clear the air. Strep throat primarily infects the tonsils and throat causing a severe sore throat. It's also a completely different illness than COVID-19. In fact, it’s actually caused by a bacterial infection and requires antibiotics to recover. COVID-19, on the other hand, is a viral infection and often comes with respiratory symptoms.

If you don’t have respiratory symptoms, then chances are you may have strep throat. You’ll often see these symptoms when having strep throat:

  • Red, sore throat with white patches on throat and tongue
  • Sudden fever
  • Chills
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Swollen glands in the neck
  • Fatigue

If you have a sore throat and are symptomatic with respiratory symptoms, then chances are it’s COVID-19:

  • Coughing
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Shortness of breath
  • Congestion
  • Loss of smell and/or taste

If you’re confused about the flu, colds or other winter illnesses, you can check back here to know the differences.

Is There A Test For Strep Throat?

Yes. If you come to AFC Urgent Care in Norwalk, we can perform a quick throat swab in our office. If you test positive for strep, we can prescribe antibiotics to help clear up the bacteria causing the infection. 

Your best bet is to get tested if you are not feeling well. We also suggest COVID-19 vaccines, boosters and the annual flu shot as preventative measures to help reduce your risk of other winter illnesses this season.


AFC Urgent Care Norwalk is here for you 7 days a week for your urgent care needs. Just walk-in. There is no appointment necessary when visiting us.

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Call (203) 845-9100 for more information about our Norwalk urgent care services.

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