Brazil coronavirus strain detected in UK says expert
Coronavirus daily deaths are a stark reminder the virus has yet to be tamed, despite the heroic vaccination effort. Yesterday marked the fifth consecutive day of Covid deaths exceeding 1,000. The surge is attributed to the new variant which was first discovered in November.
While there is no evidence the new mutated strain is more severe, its transmissibility underlines the importance of responding to the symptoms.
In addition to the main symptoms the Government has highlighted, there are an array of unusual symptoms.
In fact, research published in the British Medical Journal (BMJ) outlines three that are associated with your eyes.
According to the research, photophobia, sore eyes and itchy eyes may signal COVID-19.
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In response to the findings, Express.co.uk spoke to Dr Ali Mearza at Ophthalmic Consultants of London.
He said: “Among the lesser-known problems patients have encountered are photophobia and sore or itchy eyes.
“Photophobia is a form of light sensitivity and is often linked to headaches. Sufferers experience discomfort or pain in the eyes, especially when first turning on a light.”
As Dr Mearza reports, studies have shown having sore eyes is the most common eye symptom of coronavirus.
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How to treat eye-related symptoms
“Sadly it can be quite painful, but lubricating eye drops – which can be bought over the counter – should go a long way towards easing the pain,” advises Dr Mearza.
As he explains, many people also find natural remedies such as flaxseed or Omega-3 oil to be helpful.
“Itchy eyes can also be common among Covid patients. However if you experience extreme redness in the eyes, it could be a sign of viral conjunctivitis, though it is rare to suffer from this with COVID-19.”
Dr Mearza adds: “Most eye symptoms should clear away as the virus leaves the body, but if you usually wear contact lenses, it’s worth switching to glasses until your Covid symptoms have cleared.”
How to treat other symptoms
According to the NHS, if you have a high temperature, it can help to get lots of rest and drink plenty of fluids (water is best) to avoid dehydration – drink enough so your pee is light yellow and clear.
The health body also says to take paracetamol or ibuprofen if you feel uncomfortable.
There have been some news reports of anti-inflammatory painkillers, such as ibuprofen, making coronavirus worse.
The Commission on Human Medicines has now confirmed there is no clear evidence using ibuprofen to treat symptoms such as a high temperature makes coronavirus worse.
“You can take paracetamol or ibuprofen to treat symptoms of coronavirus,” advises the NHS.
It adds: “Try paracetamol first if you can, as it has fewer side effects than ibuprofen and is the safer choice for most people.”
How to respond to symptoms
If you have any of the main symptoms of coronavirus, get a test to check if you have coronavirus as soon as possible.
You and anyone you live with should stay at home and not have visitors until you get your test result – only leave your home to have a test.
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