You Could Develop This "Terrifying" Nightly Problem, Even From Mild COVID

Some survivors are reportedly developing this disorder after "recovering" from COVID.

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It's hard to know exactly what course your coronavirus case could take, seeing as some people seem to recover quickly, others develop serious organ damage, and still others have lingering symptoms for weeks or even months on end. Many survivors have reported a myriad of subsequent problems, from breathlessness to hair loss. Now, new accounts are pointing to another seriously concerning condition you could develop, even if you just had a mild COVID case: insomnia. "When I fell asleep or started to fall asleep, it felt like I would stop breathing and my body would kick awake and I'd be gasping for air," Franco, an anonymous 37-year-old COVID survivor, told Today. "It felt like you were drowning… it's terrifying." And Franco is not alone. Read on to find out more about how COVID affects your sleep, and for more signs that you could have battled the virus, check out If You Can't Do This, You May Have Had COVID, New Study Finds.

Half of those recovering from COVID have reported difficulty sleeping as a long-term effect of the virus, according to a survey of more than 1,500 people in the Survivor Corps Facebook Group, a resource for coronavirus survivors that has nearly 113,000 members. But it's not just your typical struggle to close your eyes and get some rest. Patrick Hobart, a 41 year old who had COVID in March, also told Today he still has "anxiety about sleeping," even seven months after he recovered. And neither Franco's nor Patrick's case was severe enough that they needed to be hospitalized for the virus.

depressed senior person sitting in bed cannot sleep from insomnia
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Meir Kryger, MD, a sleep researcher and professor at the Yale School of Medicine, told Today that he has seen many patients with various types of "really significant" long-hauler symptoms related to sleep, including insomnia. This sleep disorder can make it hard for people to fall asleep, stay asleep, or sleep for long enough, and has varying degrees of severity.

Kryger says this development of insomnia most likely stems from psychological problems, like post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). He notes that one of his patients even ended up with severe depression after COVID because he had an underlying fear of dying in his sleep from breathlessness. Of course, as is the case with a novel virus like COVID, Kryger says that there is still much to be researched about sleep difficulty in connection with the illness.

But insomnia and other sleep problems are not the only long-term issues that coronavirus survivors may experience. Read on to find out the most common lingering problems people in the Survivor Corps Facebook Group reported, ranked from least common to most common. And for more helpful developments you should be aware of, know that The CDC Now Says You Can Catch COVID From Someone in Exactly This Long.

6
Headaches

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57.56 percent

And for another factor you should monitor when it comes to COVID, be aware that Lacking This Vitamin Is Putting You at Severe COVID Risk, Study Says.

5
Inability to exercise or be active

Woman wiping her brow with the back of her hand as she jogs outdoors in a park looking to the side with a thoughtful serious expression
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58.56 percent

And for other signs of the sickness, check out If Your Food Tastes Like These 2 Things, You May Have COVID.

4
Difficulty concentrating or focusing

Distressed man head in hands
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58.97 percent

3
Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing

Older asian woman with chest pain
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65.10 percent

And for more up-to-date information, sign up for our daily newsletter.

2
Muscles or body aches

Asian man in pain on stairs
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66.75 percent

1
Fatigue

A tired man adjusts his face mask while outdoors during the COVID-19 crises.
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100 percent

And if your sense of smell is off right now, know that If You Can't Smell These 2 Things, You May Have COVID.

Best Life is constantly monitoring the latest news as it relates to COVID-19 in order to keep you healthy, safe, and informed. Here are the answers to your most burning questions, the ways you can stay safe and healthy, the facts you need to know, the risks you should avoid, the myths you need to ignore,and the symptoms to be aware of. Click here for all of our COVID-19 coverage, and sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.
Kali Coleman
Kali is an assistant editor at Best Life. Read more
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