How long it takes to recover from COVID-19 is different for everybody.
Many people feel better in a few days or weeks and most will make a full recovery within 12 weeks. But for some people, symptoms can last longer. The chances of having long-term symptoms does not seem to be linked to how ill you are when you first get COVID-19. People who had mild symptoms at first can still have long-term problems. There are lots of symptoms you can have after a COVID-19 infection. Common long COVID symptoms include:
extreme tiredness (fatigue) shortness of breath chest pain or tightness problems with memory and concentration ("brain fog")
difficulty sleeping (insomnia) heart palpitations dizziness pins and needles, joint pain
depression and anxiety tinnitus, earaches rashes feeling sick, diarrhoea, stomach aches, loss of appetite
a high temperature, cough, headaches, sore throat, changes to sense of smell or taste
NHS National Wellbeing Group
The NHS National Wellbeing Group have consistently heard from people working in health and social work/social care about the challenges they have faced in coping with the prolonged after-effects of COVID (long COVID), living with uncertainty, and their anxieties about returning to work and /or preparing to do so. Also, those in line management positions have shared with us similar concerns about how best to support colleagues who are fit to return but experiencing varying degrees of long COVID.
The NHS National Wellbeing Group have compiled a series of resources for the National Wellbeing Hub to help everyone better understand and manage Long COVID. These include two evidence-informed articles, one aimed at managers providing advice on how to support staff returning to work with Long COVID, and one aimed at people experiencing Long COVID. These are supplemented by a ‘Top Tip’ sheet with brief guidance for managing recovery from Long COVID.
Faculty of Occupational Medicine
This organisation has developed additional resources for Managers and Clinicians when supporting individuals with Long Covid syndrome:
- Guidance for managers and employers aims to help them in facilitating the return to work of employees who may find this difficult because of post-COVID syndrome.
- Guidance for healthcare professionals which aims to assist them on return to work for people with post-COVID syndrome.