The stages of COVID-19 infection Day by Day

The stages of COVID-19 infection day by day can vary from person to person, but there is a general progression that most people follow. COVID-19 is a respiratory illness caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus and can range in severity from mild to life-threatening.

We have curated a day-by-day timeline of all the symptoms you might experience while dealing with COVID-19:

Stages of COVID-19 infection Day by Day

Day 1 to 3: Incubation Period

The incubation period is the time between exposure to the virus and the onset of symptoms. For COVID-19, the incubation period is typically 2 to 14 days, but it can be as long as 24 days. During the incubation period, you may not have any symptoms, but you can still transmit the virus to others. Early mild symptoms, like excessive coughing, sore throat, fatigue, headache, or fever, should not be ignored. Take a COVID-19 test immediately if you are experiencing any of these symptoms, even if you suspect it may just be allergies.

Day 4 to 7: Early Symptoms

As the virus begins to spread throughout your body, you may start to experience more severe symptoms of COVID-19 such as:

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Fatigue
  • Sore throat
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Muscle aches
  • Headache

Day 8 to 10: Peak Symptoms

For most people, the symptoms of COVID-19 will peak between days 8 and 10 of the infection. During this time, you may experience more severe symptoms, such as:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest pain
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Confusion
  • Delirium

Day 11 to 14: Recovery

For people with mild to moderate COVID-19, symptoms will typically improve after 11 to 14 days of infection. However, some people may experience long-term symptoms, such as fatigue, shortness of breath, and difficulty concentrating.

Day 15 and beyond: Severe COVID-19

A small percentage of people who develop COVID-19 will experience severe illness. Severe COVID-19 can lead to pneumonia, acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS), and organ failure. People with severe COVID-19 may require hospitalization and mechanical ventilation.

When to seek medical attention

If you have any of the following COVID-19 symptoms, seek medical attention immediately:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Chest pain
  • Confusion
  • Delirium
  • Bluish lips or face


The best way to prevent COVID-19 is to get vaccinated and boosted. You should also wear a mask in public indoor settings, wash your hands frequently, and avoid close contact with people who are sick.


. The early symptoms of COVID-19 are often mild and flu-like, but they can progress to more severe symptoms, such as shortness of breath and difficulty breathing.

It’s important to note that there is a general progression that most people follow during the stages of COVID-19 infection day by day, and not everyone will experience all of these symptoms, while some people may not experience any symptoms at all. If you suspect that you have been exposed to COVID-19 or know someone experiencing any of these symptoms, it’s important to get tested and seek medical attention immediately.

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