COVID-19 symptoms

For most people, symptoms of COVID-19 will be mild to moderate and can be managed at home. It is important to keep an eye on symptoms, particularly if they seem to be getting worse.

If your symptoms start to get worse, help is available. 

COVID-19 health care is free while you are reported as a positive case. You can report your test result at mycovidrecord

Please call the COVID-19 Healthline on 0800 358 5453 and always call 111 in an emergency.

Mild to moderate COVID-19 symptoms

You may experience mild to moderate or no symptoms. These can include:

  • Sneezing and runny nose
  • Sore throat
  • Body aches
  • Cough
  • Feeling tired
  • Headache
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Diarrhoea (runny poo)

   Find out more about COVID-19 symptoms   

Managing your COVID-19 symptoms

  • Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of fluids.
  • Get plenty of rest.
  • Avoid running, strenuous or high-impact activities and exercise until you are well.
  • Eat when you feel able to.
  • Some people find ginger (tea or in food) can help with feeling sick.
  • Use a cool face cloth on your face, arms and neck to help cool you down if you have a fever.
  • Take paracetamol or ibuprofen to reduce fever, headache and body aches.
  • Remember to take any regular medications you are on.
  • Try saline nose drops or spray for a blocked or runny nose. Decongestants can provide short term relief.
  • For a cough, it is best to stay hydrated (honey and hot drinks may help soothe the cough and sore throat) and avoid lying on your back.
  • If you cannot stop vomiting or have bad diarrhoea, talk to your GP.

When to get help

Worsening symptoms - Call your GP or healthline

Worsening symptoms can include:

  • new or worse trouble with breathing
  • severe dehydration such as a very dry mouth, not peeing very much, feeling light-headed or dizzy
  • severe headache.

If your symptoms get worse or you need advice on how to manage, call your local healthcare provider or Healthline 

Severe symptoms: Call 111

If you or the person you are caring for have severe symptoms call 111 immediately. Severe symptoms includes:

  • finding it difficult to breathe
  • feeling faint, passing out or is very difficult to wake up
  • blue around the mouth or very pale and cold
  • having severe chest pain

All COVID-19 care is FREE

Video Guide: Managing your COVID symptoms