Montana doctor warns allergy symptoms similar to COVID-19

Posted at 6:45 PM, May 02, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-02 20:46:05-04

BILLINGS — As spring weather moves in, those with allergies may be more cognizant of their symptoms during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Doctors in Billings are saying that the symptoms of seasonal allergies can be similar to patients who have had or are suffering from COVID-19.

“A lot of the symptoms overlap, from viruses to allergies, to bacterial infections, and I think that it is important that we identify what is causing your symptoms,” said Dr. Brad Fuller of Fuller Family Medicine in Billings.

These symptoms include sneezing and coughing, which are two symptoms that can be prevalent in someone suffering from seasonal allergies and COVID-19.

According to Fuller, those with COVID-19 also have different symptoms, such as fever. In people who have been diagnosed with COVID -19, it is common for them to have a fever, unlike those with seasonal allergies, he said.

Fuller says if you know that you have seasonal allergies, then the symptoms could just be a flare up. But if you are not used to getting allergies, then you should visit your doctor to make sure you are not experiencing a separate illness.

During the phased re-opening that Gov. Steve Bullock has put into effect, it will be important for allergy sufferers to continue to social distance since they will be sneezing and coughing due to added pollen in the air.

“Even though the coronavirus won’t necessarily cause your allergy symptoms, allergens, dust, pollen, dogs, cats, grasses- they’re going to make you start coughing and sneezing more. So, if you concomitantly have the coronavirus…allergies are going to be a vehicle to help you spread that,” he added.

Fuller said that people with allergies should consider trying over-the-counter relief medications. If those do not work, then they should consult with their doctor for further testing.