COVID-19: General Information

Information about COVID-19 symptoms, isolation, and popular resources. Find answers to COVID-19 frequently asked questions here.

On this page:


Signs and symptoms of COVID-19 are similar to influenza (flu) and include:

  • Coughing into elbow


  • Headache


  • lungs

    Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing

  • Sore throat

    Sore throat

  • Person with thermometer in mouth

    Fever or Chills

  • No smell

    New loss of taste or smell

  • Person fatigued


  • Nose dripping

    Congestion or runny nose

  • Leg pain

    Muscle or body aches

  • Nausea

    Nausea or vomiting

  • toilet


Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure.

Most patients experience relatively mild symptoms and can recover at home. Some patients, particularly those with underlying medical conditions, may experience more severe respiratory illness. Learn more about COVID-19 symptoms.

Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children, MIS-C, is a serious but rare complication of COVID-19 that causes inflammation of certain body parts.

Prevent COVID-19

  • washing hands

    Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use alcohol-based hand sanitizer.

  • not touching eye

    Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.

  • socially distanced

    Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

  • house

    Stay home while you are sick and avoid close contact with others.

  • girl with face mask

    Wear a face mask in public indoor spaces, especially if you are not vaccinated.

  • syringe

    Get your COVID vaccine and stay up-to-date.

  • socially distanced

    Practice social distancing.

What to Do If You Are Exposed to COVID-19

You can learn more about factors that can increase your risk of COVID-19 by learning about your risk of getting very sick from COVID-19 and understanding your exposure risks.

For COVID-19 exposure:

  • Day 0 is the day of your last exposure to someone with COVID-19.
  • Day 1 is the first full day after your last exposure.

If you get exposed to COVID-19, take these precautions until Day 11 after your last exposure:

  • Wear a well-fitting face mask any time you are around other people or in an indoor public place.
    • Do not go places where you are unable to wear a mask.
  • Watch for symptoms.
    • If you develop symptoms, isolate immediately and get tested.
  • Take a COVID-19 test on at least Day 6 after your last exposure.
    • If you test negative, continue wearing a mask and monitoring for symptoms until Day 11 after your last exposure.
    • If you test positive, isolate immediately.
  • If you already had COVID-19 within the last 90 days, see these specific testing recommendations.

What to Do If You Are Sick

  • phone

    Call your healthcare provider to discuss options.

  • Nasal swab

    Take a COVID-19 test.

  • ambulance

    If you have an emergency warning sign (including trouble breathing), get emergency medical care immediately.

COVID-19 Isolation

Isolation for people who test positive for COVID-19 or have COVID-19 symptoms

If you are a healthcare worker and either tested positive for COVID-19 or are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, please contact your employer and use Maine's healthcare guidance and this federal guidance to find out what you should do.

If you are not a healthcare worker and either tested positive for COVID-19 or are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, follow these instructions:

No matter your vaccination status, isolate from others if you test positive for COVID-19 or if you are sick and think you might have COVID-19.

  • Nasal swab

    If your COVID-19 test is negative, you can end your isolation.

  • positive COVID test

    If your COVID-19 test is positive, follow the isolation recommendations below.

How do I isolate?

  • For isolation:
    • Day 0 is the day your symptoms started (or the day you were tested if you do not have symptoms).
    • Day 1 is the first full day after the day your symptoms started (or after you were tested if you do not have symptoms).
    • If you develop symptoms in the first 10 days after you were tested, the clock restarts at Day 0 on the day your symptoms start.
  • To isolate:
  • home

    Stay home. Do not have any visitors. Do not go out in public. This includes grocery stores, gas stations, banks, workplaces, etc.

  • isolation

    Have zero contact with anyone else, including household members. If complete isolation is not possible, practice social distancing and wear a mask any time you have to be around others.

  • healthcare

    You can leave your sick room and house for necessary or emergency medical care, including for COVID-19 treatment.

When can I leave isolation?

When Can I Leave Isolation?

Download this isolation chart here (PDF).

Regardless of when you leave isolation, avoid being around people who are more likely to get very sick from COVID-19 until at least Day 11.

Find more information on isolation and an isolation calculator here.

Long COVID Resources

What resources can I find online about Long COVID?

Where should I go for clinical care? Should I go to a Long COVID specialist?

  • If you experience Long COVID symptoms, contact your primary care provider. They will help you create a plan for care. If you have ongoing symptoms that need special testing, your primary care provider might refer you to a specialist. They may refer you to a Post COVID Care Center if your symptoms need extra management.