Covid-19 has been around for almost a year. While a lot of information keeps coming out on how long you need to isolate, it keeps changing based on new research. Many state level health organizations are working to provide information to curb the transmission of Covid-19. They issue guidelines regarding the spread of Covid-19 and the isolation periods. This varies from person to person depending on the level of infection they have suffered. It ranges from mild, moderate to severely weakened immune systems or immunocompromised. It also depends on when you started showing symptoms or when you came in contact with a person infected with Covid-19. 


According to the CDC, If you have tested positive for Coronavirus and are symptomatic, self isolate for ten days since your symptoms started and 36 hours since your last symptom. However, if you don’t have any signs, quarantine for ten days after you’ve had the test. If you start showing any indications after you have been self isolating, then distance yourself for ten days after your symptoms began. You can stop distancing yourself after ten days if you do not show any signs, have not had a fever for the past three days, you just have a cough and changes in your smell and taste(these can last for weeks even after your infection has gone). After ten days, if you still have any indications like a high temperature, nasal congestion, sneezing, feeling sick or you have diarrhoea you will still have to continue your isolation. Your doctor might still want you to get tested again after your quarantine period to ensure that you are not contagious.

If you were severely ill with Covid-19 you might need to stay home for longer than ten days. It could extend for upto 20 days since the symptoms first started. People who were severely immunocompromised might require testing. Based on your tests, your healthcare professional will tell you if it is safe for you to start being around people.


If someone you live with tests positive and they are symptomatic, stay home for ten days after symptoms started. If they do not have any indicators, distance yourself for ten days after they had their test. Again, if they start showing signs of Covid-19 after they have begun isolating, the ten days restarts from when their symptoms began. You can stop quarantining after ten days if you do not show any more signs of an infection. Although it might be difficult, avoid coming in close contact with this person and avoid sharing spaces like the kitchen and bathroom.


If you come into contact with a person who has tested positive for Covid-19, you will have to quarantine for 14 days after your last interaction with that person. However, if you yourself have had Covid-19 in the past three months and recovered from it, and you do not develop any symptoms, you do not need to stay home.

However mild your infection was and no matter how quickly you recovered, you should continue wearing a mask in public places and maintaining social distance. Reinfection by the virus is very rare but it has happened, so you should always be cautious. 

Check out the Buckhead Medicine website and read our blogs for more information regarding Covid-19. Read our blog on why the CDC keeps changing Covid-19 guidelines and how to get a Covid test if you don’t have health insurance. If you’re planning to travel, read about precautions you can take if you’re going home for the holidays on our blog.