Covid 19: Common symptoms and testing options

Covid 19: Common symptoms and testing options

How common is it to have coronavirus symptoms if you have Covid-19?

Although there are a number of common symptoms associated with Covid-19, a recent study by University College London revealed that 86 percent of people who tested positive for coronavirus did not have virus symptoms such as fever, cough or loss of taste or smell.


If you have Covid-19, but do not have symptoms, it’s still important that you self-isolate. People who are asymptomatic are still contagious and are at risk of passing the virus on to others who may develop symptoms themselves. This is particularly dangerous for the elderly and those with underlying health conditions. If you think you have been exposed to the virus, it’s important to self-isolate, until you receive a test result that confirms whether you have coronavirus, to help protect others.

What are the common symptoms of Covid-19?

Asymptomatic cases make the challenge of containing the virus more complicated. But for those who do have symptoms, winter conditions make it harder to spot whether some of the more common complaints are due to coronavirus or other viruses such as flu.

Covid-19 is primarily a respiratory virus. Although symptoms can vary from person to person in type and severity, the most common complaints associated with coronavirus include:

  • Fever or chills
  • A dry cough
  • Shortness of breath
  • Fatigue

These common Covid-19 symptoms can take anywhere from two to 10 days to appear after exposure to the virus, but can develop in as little as 24 hours.

Less common Covid-19 symptoms

While there are more frequent symptoms associated with Covid-19, other symptoms which are less common have been reported. These include:

  • Sore throat
  • Headache
  • Loss of taste or smell
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Confusion or dizziness
  • Diarrhoea

These symptoms are not reported as often as the most common Covid-19 complaints, but do still present in many Covid-19 cases and should not be ignored.  

Should you take a Covid-19 test if you don’t have symptoms?

Even if you do not have Covid-19 symptoms, there are a number of reasons you may still wish to be tested.

  • You have been in contact with someone who has tested positive or has symptoms of coronavirus.
  • You want to take a Covid-19 test as a safety precaution, to prove you do not have coronavirus, for work purposes or in order to be allowed to travel abroad.

Can you get a free NHS test if you don’t have Covid-19 symptoms?

Currently, the NHS will only offer you a free Covid test if you have Covid-19 symptoms or are living with someone else who has coronavirus symptoms. If these situations do not apply to you, but you want to be tested for coronavirus, the NHS recommends that you take a private Covid-19 test from their list of approved private providers.

Can you take a private Covid-19 test if you don’t have symptoms?

If you do not have coronavirus symptoms but are concerned you might have been exposed to the virus, or you need to demonstrate a negative covid test result for business or travel reasons, private covid testing is a quick and reliable option and, for these circumstances, is recommended by the NHS.

Private home-to-laboratory Covid-19 tests are also a convenient option if you are not symptomatic but want to self-isolate and avoid travelling to a testing centre to reduce the risk of exposing others, until you are able to confirm whether you have the virus.

Blue Horizon is the only medical company in the UK that will guarantee your results by the end of the next day, following successful sample delivery to our laboratory

If you need a private Covid-19 test, our COVID-19 RT-PCR Swab test is a fast and reliable option.

The test is easy to order online and your home-to-laboratory Covid-19 testing kit is quickly dispatched so you can complete the test in the comfort of your own home.

Our Covid-19 testing kits are available for same day dispatch and can be returned quickly using UPS courier pick up or Royal Mail 24 tracked return. You can also return your sample at one of our drop-off points in Nottingham, Barnard Castle or London.

Once your sample arrives at our laboratory, our expert team will quickly process the test and send the results to you by email.

We will provide you with a certificate which contains important information about how your test was processed and the result of your covid-19 test. This certificate is a universally accepted form of proof that you can use for travel or for work reasons, if you receive a negative result.

Blue Horizon is featured in the government list of approved private testing companies so you can rest assured that you are choosing a reputable and reliable company to process your covid-19 test and deliver fast and accurate results.

Ordering a private covid test from us is a quick and easy process. If you are concerned that you have been exposed to someone with coronavirus or you need to confirm that you are negative for covid-19 in order to travel or for work purposes, you can order a COVID-19 RT-PCR Swab test online for fast dispatch direct to you.

In your kit you will receive everything you need in order to take the Covid-19 test at home and return your sample to one of our accredited laboratories, using a fast-track postal option or drop off location.

Your covid-19 test results will be emailed to you the day after we receive your sample, following testing by our expert laboratory team.

Sold out

Quick and Reliable

There's a reason that over 30% of Blue Horizon Kit requests are from patients that have used us before.