By now, you probably know and are on alert for the most common symptoms associated with the coronavirus. One of these is a loss of taste and/or smell, which for some people is the first serious sign of trouble. Now, some experts are suggesting that people do a cursory check for these symptoms using some parts of their morning routine.
Professor of developmental, molecular, and chemical biology at Tufts University School of Medicine James Schwob told a university publication called Tufts Now that one of the easiest ways to see if you're losing your sense of smell is to take a whiff of your ground coffee in the morning before making a batch.
"One of the things that can be done pretty easily, pretty objectively by someone at home would be to take some ground coffee and see how far away you can hold it and still smell it" he shared: "Or do the same with rubbing alcohol or your shampoo. If your nose is not congested and you have trouble recognizing those or other scents that are familiar to you, you might want to call your doctor about getting tested."
And he's not alone in his suggestion: Many experts are suggesting you take a sniff and swig of coffee as a way to monitor your system. Penn State is suggesting students smell things like coffee, spices, flowers, and more as a way to do a quick check. Some videos have even gone viral on TikTok, with people trying out coffee drinks only to find out their sense of taste is gone.
Of course, you should not use these methods as a pass to do whatever you want. Some people with COVID-19 will keep their taste and smell and you could lose it later in the day even, so just because you can smell in that moment doesn't mean you get a free pass to do whatever you want. Losing smell just means you should get tested immediately to be sure and that you should isolate. Sniffing your coffee is just one small thing you can do along with bigger things like wearing your mask, staying home when possible, and checking your temperature to help to curb the spread of COVID-19.
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