Covid-19 changes lives…but not in a good way

By Kira Gibson

Every single day thousands of people contract Covid-19, but nobody is 100 per cent sure how long it will take to recover from it. 

The NHS has a webpage dedicated to helping people understand and deal with the symptoms that might be left over after having coronavirus – however this webpage isn’t well publicised and does not appear at the top of internet searches. 

The name given to the symptoms and problems that can occur after the original ten days of isolation and illness is “post-Covid-19 syndrome” or “long Covid”. 

Long Covid isn’t widely talked about so many people don’t know what to expect after the initial sickness has passed – but everyone knows what to look for when you have the virus. 

Reece Classick (21) is dealing with some of the symptoms named on the NHS website that will still be around after leaving isolation. 

Reece Classick, 21. Photo credit: Reece Classick

He started having symptoms on December 28 and quickly realised it was Covid-19 and got tested. 

He suffered with the main symptoms listed by the Government to look out for (cough, loss/change to taste and smell and a high temperature) as well as joint and muscle pain, trouble breathing and chest pain. 

He left isolation 22 days later, but nearly five weeks after the official ten-day isolation ended, Mr Classick is still suffering with breathlessness and pain in his chest, joints and muscles. 

He said: “The worst bit was realising that the tight chest and shortness of breath is a long-term thing.

“Things like walking around or sitting up knock the wind out of you and it’s like you don’t feel you’re breathing enough even though you are. 

“Like you feel you can’t breathe but actually you’re breathing fine? But that’s all psychosomatic stuff – like your brain is used to breathing deeper and longer than you can?

“It’s bad in the short term and recovery is nasty in the long run, but the sickness passed pretty quickly (8-9 days) and then it’s just pain all over for me.” 

Mr Classick didn’t have any prior respiratory problems such as asthma when he caught the illness. For more information on Long Covid or what to expect after having the virus, please go to https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/long-term-effects-of-coronavirus-long-covid/ or alternatively go directly to https://www.yourcovidrecovery.nhs.uk/managing-the-effects/effects-on-your-body/ to find out about a specific part of your recovery. 

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