Whilst the world gets to grips with Covid-19, many people are left dealing with debilitating symptoms of long Covid. Let us review what we know about Covid and how you can help yourself back to full recovery?

Who is left with symptoms?

In a study of 4,182 people most people with COVID-19 report being back to normal under 11 days. Around one in seven (13.3%) had symptoms lasting for at least 4 weeks. One in twenty (4.5%) remained symptomatic for 8 weeks. One in fifth (2.3%) had symptoms for more than 12 weeks.

How do we define long covid?

Acute covid are signs and symptoms of Covid-19 for up to four weeks. Ongoing symptoms from four to twelve weeks is termed ongoing symptomatic Covid-19. Post Covid-19 syndrome (Long Covid) are signs and symptoms that develop during or after an infection consistent with Covid -19 which is present for more than 12 weeks and not attributed to alternative diagnoses.

Possible symptoms of Long Covid?

Respiratory symptoms
Breathlessness, cough.

Cardiovascular symptoms
Chest tightness, chest pain, palpitations.

Generalised symptoms
Abdominal pain, nausea, diarrhoea, reduced appetite.

Musculoskeletal symptoms
Joint pains, Muscle pains.

Neurological symptoms
‘Brain fog’ - loss of concentration or memory issues, headaches, sleep disturbances, peripheral neuropathy symptoms (pins & needles, numbness), dizziness, delirium.

Psychological symptoms
Symptoms of depression and anxiety.

Ear, Nose & throat Symptoms
Tinnitus Earache, sore throat, loss of taste and/or smell.

Dermatological Symptoms 
Skin rashes.

What we know

Recovery is different for everyone.  The chances of having long-term symptoms do not seem to be linked to how ill you are when you first get coronavirus. People who had mild symptoms at first can still have long-term problems.
Recovery from long covid is rarely linear, and symptoms often fluctuate.

Based on the COVID symptom study; women, older people, and those with a greater number of different symptoms in the first week of their illness were more likely to develop Long Covid.

Our top 5 resources to access 

1. The NHS has provided a handy guide to recovering from Covid. Click here for more info

2. The Chartered Society of Physiotherapy has provided a Covid-19 road to recovery advice guide. This includes free downloadable exercises, an activity planner, and breathing exercises.
Find out more here.

3. Every Mind Matters is a useful resource offering support and tips to help cope with common symptoms such as mood, anxiety, stress, and sleep disruption.

4. We are Undefeatable is a movement developed by 15 leading health and social care charities with support from Sport England. 

5. 10 minute home workouts with One Home Workouts 

1. Attributes and predictors of long-Covid: analysis of Covid cases and their symptoms collected by the Covid symptoms study App (2020)

2. Managing the long-term effects of Covid-19: summary of NICE, SIGN, and RCGP rapid guideline, BMJ (2021).