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Where to Get Rapid Antigen Tests in Australia

Experiencing COVID-like symptoms can be alarming, and you need to get tested at once.

Early diagnosis of the mildest cold or flu symptoms with rapid antigen tests for COVID can help avoid spreading the virus.

Signs and Symptoms of Coronavirus Disease

The symptoms of coronavirus typically appear 2 to 14 days after particle exposure. This period after exposure and prior to it has symptoms referred to as the incubation period. You could spread COVID-19 before you even experience symptoms. This is called pre-symptomatic transmission.

The following is a quick look at the common signs and symptoms of COVID-19. This list isn’t even comprehensive, but the list could go further. 

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Fatigue
  • Loss of taste or smell

Other symptoms may include:

  • Difficulty in breathing
  • Aching muscles
  • Feeling cold
  • Sore throat
  • Runny nose
  • Headache
  • Chest pain
  • Conjunctivitis
  • Queasiness
  • Unsettled stomach
  • Diarrhoea
  • Rash.

Coronavirus symptoms range from mild to severe. Some people may only develop a few symptoms, whereas others have no symptoms but can spread the virus via asymptomatic transmission.

Some people may even develop debilitating illnesses, such as pneumonia, a week after the onset of symptoms.

In some cases, people may experience the symptoms of COVID-19 for more than four weeks after diagnosis. These issues are referred to as post-COVID-19 conditions.

The Age Factor

The COVID-19 risk increases with age. Children may exhibit symptoms similar to adults and show mild illness. However, it must be noted that children may experience multisystem inflammatory syndrome. It is a symptom that negatively affects organs and tissues several days after COVID-19. Some adults experience this syndrome as well.

Older adults have a higher risk of contracting serious illness from COVID-19. Moreover, people with medical conditions may have a higher risk of serious symptoms.

With similarity in symptoms, influenza or flu and COVID-19 are often confused with each other. Both are contagious respiratory system illnesses, but different viruses cause them.

COVID-19 is caused by SARS-CoV-2, a novel coronavirus, whereas the influenza virus causes flu.Unlike flu, COVID-19 seems to spread more quickly and cause more severe illness in some people. It also takes longer for people to show symptoms, making them more contagious.

Based on symptoms alone, it could be hard to identify if it’s COVID-19 or flu. That is why testing is critical to confirm a diagnosis.

Rapid diagnostic tests for COVID-19 are also known as RDTs and point-of-care tests.

This is an easy-to-use test that provides quick results in as little as 20 minutes or less.

In contrast to standard tests conducted in labs, COVID rapid antigen tests can be done at the point of care or where you are receiving care. These places include your healthcare provider’s office, a clinic or even your own home.

COVID-19 rapid tests are available as home kits. Like other rapid tests, the rapid antigen tests have lower sensitivity than laboratory tests.

But fast home-based results may prevent the spread of this serious disease.

Rapid antigen tests for COVID usually include the following procedures:

  • Provide a sample of your bodily fluids, such as blood, urine, saliva or nasal secretions.
  • A substance is mixed in with the sample causing a chemical reaction if shown to be positive for a disease or other condition.
  • The dipstick or the rapid antigen test cassette will show the results.

A dipstick is a chemically coated plastic strip. If the sample tests positive, the dipstick will change colour when the sample is placed.

On the other hand, a rapid antigen test cassette is a slim plastic case with a well to hold the sample. The well will show a letter or a symbol to indicate the result.

Rapid tests are often utilised to diagnose infectious diseases, such as the following:

  • Flu
  • Strep throat
  • Malaria
  • HIV
  • COVID-19 (rapid antigen tests usually provide results in 30 minutes).

If you are showing signs and symptoms of COVID-19 after coming in contact with someone infected, you must seek medical advice immediately. If you have COVID-19 symptoms that warrant an emergency, such as trouble breathing, seek care right away.

However, before you go to the hospital, inform them ahead so that the healthcare providers can take precautions to ensure that others will not be exposed.

The following are COVID-19 emergency signs and symptoms:

  • Difficulty breathing
  • Chronic chest pain
  • Grogginess
  • Mental confusion
  • Pale or grey skin, lips or nail beds

This list isn’t complete. You must consult with your healthcare provider and let them know if you are an older adult or have a medical condition, such as cardiovascular or respiratory disease. These factors may leave you at a greater risk of becoming seriously ill with COVID-19.

Dexcon | Leading Medical PPE Supplier in Australia

Most people who experience mild to moderate COVID-19 symptoms recover without special treatment. But some will develop serious symptoms and require medical attention.

If you are looking for rapid antigen test kits near you, Dexcon is a supplier of rapid antigen tests. We have nasal swab kits in Australia for self-testing and quick results, and many more.

For more information on rapid antigen test kits and other COVID-related equipment, contact us. Dexcon is a global distributor of personal protective equipment against COVID-19 in Australia. Check our products here.