If you haven't been sick with COVID-19, you likely know someone who has.
The virus had infected 565,097 New Jersey residents as of Monday morning, killing 18,348 of them, according to the state's COVID-19 dashboard.
Perhaps the most terrifying aspect of COVID-19 is there is no well to tell who will battle a mild case and who will suffer a severe one.
Daily Voice polled our Instagram followers Sunday night for a deeper look at infection rate, symptoms and fears surrounding COVID-19 (scroll for questions and answers).
Most people said they mistook their initial symptoms for the common cold, flu or sinus infection. Most people reported a complete loss of smell or taste, which came on very suddenly. Most common bizarre symptoms included back pain, pelvis pain, metallic taste and altered taste after recovery.
Most people who had not tested positive said they were afraid of getting sick (57 percent). Others who were not afraid said it was because they were already in isolation, or were confident that their bodies would easily be able to fight the virus off.
The most common piece of advice from recovered patients to individuals who have not yet tested positive: "This is serious. Act like it."
Here are our seven questions and responses, as of Monday morning.
Question 1: Have you tested positive for COVID-19?
Answer 1: Most people (79 percent/1,158 people) said they had not tested positive for the virus, while 315 people, or 21 percent, said they had tested positive.
Question 2: If you haven't tested positive, are you afraid that you will? Why or why not?
Answer 2: Most people (57 percent) said they are afraid of testing positive, here are some of the most common reasons:
- "We are more afraid of unknowingly transferring the virus to others."
- "Don't want to die."
- "Fear of the unknown."
- "The flu knocks me out, what will this do?"
- "I am immunocompromised."
- "I have asthma and a heart condition."
- "Don't know the longterm effects."
Question 3: For those who were sick, what were your first symptoms?
- Stuffy nose (among most common answers)
- Flu-like symptoms
- Loss of taste/smell
- Fever (among most common answers)
- Cough (among most common answers)
- Body aches
- Sore throat (among most common answers)
- Chills (among most common answers)
- Burning in the eyes/backache
Question 4: How long were you sick?
Answer 4: Most people (81 percent) were sick for approximately two weeks. Some said a month or more.
Question 5: What was your most bizarre symptoms?
- "Awful back aches" (this was surprisingly a very common answer, one patient was so bad she was hospitalized for it."
- "Some foods I'll never eat again bc I can taste weird chemicals when I do."
- "Complete loss of smell and taste" (by far most common answer next to back pain).
- "Two months since COVID, I get this random hiccup that I've never had before."
- "Nausea x1000."
- "Extreme pain in my hips and pelvis."
- "Metallic taste in mouth."
- "Ringing in my ears/tingling lips."
- "Burning nose."
- "Hurt to move my eyeballs."
- "Post COVID, 2.5 months later, 95 percent of food tastes like rotten meat to me."
Question 6: Were you sicker than you thought you'd be, or less sick than you thought you'd be?
Answer 6: Most people (73 percent/249 people) said they were less sick than they thought they would be.
Question 7: For those who tested positive, what would your advice be to those who have not been sick yet, or not taking COVID seriously?
- "Take your vitamins and don't let your guard down. I was super careful then I got it from a relative."
- "I thought it was a sinus infection because I get that a lot. It was COVID."
- "I tested positive and exhibited no symptoms. Get tested to keep yourself and loved ones safe."
- "The aggravation of sharing the news with friends/family sucks."
- "Please take it seriously. You don't know how bad you're going to get it."
- "Get an oximeter and check your levels." (One person said their oxygen dropped to 85 percent. By the time they got to the hospital later that day it was at 77 percent. They were hospitalized for a week).
- "Rest as much as you can."
- "It's real. It's serious. It's scary. Take it seriously."
- "Don't be a knucklehead."
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