What Are the Symptoms of COVID-19?

The acute symptoms of COVID-19—cough, fever, and shortness of breath—can develop two to 14 days after exposure to coronavirus.

However, these symptoms are common to other illnesses, too. How do you know if your cough, fever, or difficulty breathing is due to COVID-19 or something else?

The most common symptoms

There are three main symptoms to look for:


You have a temperature of 100 degrees Fahrenheit or greater. Take your temperature in the afternoon or evening rather than in the morning.


You have a dry cough that you feel in your chest. A productive cough, one that produces phlegm or mucus, isn’t associated with COVID-19. The cough feels like it starts in your lungs rather than in your throat.

Shortness of breath

You are unable to breathe normally. Contact your doctor immediately if you have shortness of breath or difficulty breathing.

Other symptoms of COVD-19

Fever, cough, and shortness of breath are the most common early symptoms of COVID-19, but the disease can cause additional symptoms:

  • Headaches
  • Body aches
  • Fatigue
  • Digestive issues
  • Sore throat
  • Runny nose
  • Sneezing
  • Diarrhea
  • Loss of sense of smell or taste

These symptoms alone do not indicate that you have COVID-19. However, you should contact your doctor if these symptoms get worse after a week or if you have concerns.

Should you contact your doctor?

If you have a fever over 100 degrees AND a cough or shortness of breath, call your doctor’s office. Your MANA primary care doctor will monitor your symptoms by scheduling TeleVisits with you every few days.

The best way to slow the spread of COVID-19 is to limit your exposure to coronavirus:

  • Stay home as much as possible.
  • Practice social distancing at all times.
  • Wash your hands properly (at least 20 seconds with soap and water) and often.
  • Wear a homemade cloth mask that covers your nose and mouth.
  • Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer containing at least 60% alcohol if you are not able to wash your hands.
  • Do not touch your face.
  • Clean and disinfect surfaces frequently.

Facts and information about the coronavirus pandemic are constantly changing. Visit the CDC site for the most up-to-date information during the COVID-19 outbreak.