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What to Do if You Have a Positive COVID Test

Unfortunately, the COVID-19 pandemic does not seem to be going anywhere anytime soon – the number of new COVID-19 cases remains high, while hospitals are under siege with an influx of new patients. With this in mind, it’s vital that we all continue with COVID-19 testing and adhere to quarantine guidelines. In this article, we will describe the steps you need to take if you test positive for COVID-19.

How Long to Quarantine After a Positive COVID Test

There is a difference between quarantine and isolation when it comes to testing positive for COVID-19. If you have been exposed to someone with COVID-19 but you have not received a positive test result, then you should follow the CDC’s quarantine guidelines. Whereas, if you received positive COVID test results then you should follow the CDC guidelines for isolation, not the CDC quarantine guidelines. 

The purpose of isolation is to separate people infected with COVID-19 from those who are not infected. People who test positive for COVID-19 should remain isolated until their symptoms are gone and they have received a negative COVID test. When faced with the choice of which types of COVID tests to receive, try and get a PCR COVID test, like those offered by BioCollections, if possible as they are the most accurate tests available

Here are the steps you need to take while isolating at home:

  1. Monitor Your Coronavirus Symptoms Day by Day – If you are experiencing any of the following COVID-19 symptoms then you should seek emergency medical attention immediately.
  • Pale, gray, or blue-colored skin, lips, or nail beds
  • Persistent pain or pressure in the chest
  • Inability to wake or stay awake
  • Trouble breathing
  • New confusion

  1. Separate Yourself From Others – You should avoid any contact with others until your symptoms have subsided and you have received a negative COVID-19 test. If contact with another person is unavoidable then you need to wear a mask. If you do not live on your own, here is how you can protect other members of your household.
  • Have another household member disinfect any household surfaces or items you have come into contact with.
  • Tell your household members to use disposable gloves and other protective equipment if they are handling objects you have come into contact with.
  • Don’t share personal household items like cups, towels, and utensils.
  • Stay in a separate room from other household members, if possible.
  • Use a separate bathroom, if possible.

  1. Inform Your Close Contacts that They Might Be Infected – Tell your close contacts that they may have been exposed to COVID-19 as soon as you receive your positive results. By doing this you are preventing the virus from spreading. 
  • An infected person can spread COVID-19 starting 48 hours (or two days) before the person has any symptoms or tests positive. 
  • Share this resource, or other CDC resources, with your friends so they know how to proceed.

Treating COVID-19 at Home

Even if your symptoms aren’t severe, having COVID is not a pleasant experience. Here are a few guidelines to follow as you take care of yourself.

  • Stay in touch with your healthcare provider and follow their instructions
  • Take over-the-counter medicines, such as acetaminophen
  • Get rest and stay hydrated
  • Take hot baths or showers
  • Clean your bedsheets often
  • Clean your hands often

How Long Are You Contagious With Coronavirus?

According to the CDC, you can end your isolation after:  

  • 10 days have passed since your symptoms started
  • 24 hours have passed with no fever without the use of fever-reducing medicine
  • Other symptoms are improving or gone.
    • Note: Loss of taste and smell may linger even after you are no longer contagious. 

By now you’re probably asking, “When can I discontinue isolation after testing positive for COVID19 if I never have any symptoms?” According to the CDC, If you continue to exhibit no symptoms, you can end your isolation once 10 days have passed since you received your COVID-19 test results.

BioCollections: Testing You Can Trust

BioCollections has been on the front lines of COVID-19 testing since the beginning of the pandemic. Our COVID-19 tests were among the first to receive emergency use approval in 2020. We are dedicated to delivering completely accurate PCR test results to our customers within 12-24 hours. Contact BioCollections today to schedule a test at a lab near you. 

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