My Throat Feels Odd: Is It COVID-19 Or Strep Throat?

February 1, 2024

Woman feeling a sore throat and is wondering if it is strep throat at AFC Urgent Care Rocky Hill

Winter commonly brings about the prevalence of sore throats, leaving individuals questioning whether their symptoms indicate strep throat, COVID-19, or another ailment. While concerns about the HV.1 and JN.1 variants may lead to an assumption of COVID-19, it's important to recognize that various winter illnesses warrant consideration.

Differentiating between COVID-19 and strep throat is crucial. COVID-19 results from a viral infection, whereas strep throat is caused by bacteria. Strep is highly contagious, transmitted through sneezing, coughing, or shared contact with surfaces. This guide from AFC Urgent Care Rocky Hill aims to help individuals distinguish the causes and symptoms of strep throat and COVID-19, ensuring proper treatment and peace of mind throughout the winter.

COVID-19 and Strep Throat: Unique Ailments

COVID-19, caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus, emerged in December 2019 in Wuhan, China. This highly contagious disease predominantly induces respiratory symptoms akin to a cold, flu, or pneumonia. Even with vaccination and boosters, individuals with COVID-19 may experience mild symptoms, severe illness, or remain asymptomatic.

In contrast, strep throat is an infection in the throat and tonsils caused by group A Streptococcus bacteria, known for its contagious nature through respiratory droplets and direct contact.

Symptoms of Strep Throat and COVID-19

Strep throat manifests with symptoms such as a rapidly onset sore throat, pain while swallowing, fever, red and swollen tonsils (potentially with white patches or streaks of pus), tiny red spots (petechiae) on the roof of the mouth, and swollen lymph nodes in the front of the neck.

For those symptomatic with COVID-19 and a sore throat, additional respiratory symptoms may include coughing, difficulty breathing, shortness of breath, congestion, and loss of smell or taste. It's crucial to bear in mind that symptoms can vary with the emergence of new COVID variants, with the latest being HN.1 and JN.1


Testing and Treatment at AFC Urgent Care Rocky Hill

AFC Urgent Care Rocky Hill offers comprehensive testing for both COVID-19 and strep throat. Operating seven days a week, they provide COVID-19 tests and rapid strep tests (throat swabs) to detect bacterial growth. Antibiotic treatment is also available for strep throat, and adherence to the recommended dosage is highly advised to prevent recurrence. If you require a COVID-19 test or strep test, AFC Urgent Care Rocky Hill encourages you to make an appointment promptly. Their services are accessible every day of the week to ensure timely assistance.

Our center is open every day of the week, welcoming both scheduled appointments and walk-ins. AFC Urgent CareRocky Hill accepts most insurances, ensuring accessible and timely healthcare services. Explore our user-friendly online payment system—just a few clicks and you can conveniently settle your bill.

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