After two years of efforts to steer clear of Covid I finally came down with it myself 10 days ago. I assume it was the BA.2 variant that is now dominant in the UK, but I cannot be sure of that. In any case, after one day of feeling slightly below par I came down with typical cold symptoms overnight on Tuesday/Wednesday 19th/20th April. Those symptoms continued for around 24 hours and I then experienced a few days of feeling less energetic than usual. I treated the cold-like symptoms with a paracetamol based preparation called ‘Beechams’ All In One Tablets’ that were left over from my last pre-pandemic cold (they were a few months out of date but worked perfectly well). Meanwhile I tested positive for six days in a row before again testing negative. I did not experience a sore throat, headaches or loss of taste or smell. I now feel fully well again, though based on what I have read about the long-term effects of Covid it might well have caused other damage. I have no way of knowing that for now.
My case was just one of tens of millions in the UK, as it appears around 75% of the UK population has now been infected with Covid. I do not have any of the underlying conditions that have been identified as putting people at risk of severe Covid (apart from my age at 71), but I regard myself as lucky to have experienced such relatively minor symptoms.
We cannot control all risks to which we are exposed, short of living as a complete hermit. I have been fully vaccinated and boosted, continue to wear a mask on transport and in shops, but I still managed to get Covid. We know that a significant minority of people who develop Covid still develop serious illness and die (over 2,000 deaths last week alone in the UK). I will therefore carry on wearing a mask on transport and in shops, but I have stopped doing so in lifts. I plan to stop mask wearing when our Covid death rate drops below that of a typical serious flu season in the UK, but we are still far away from that.
Michael Ingle – email@example.com