Loss of smell and taste are common symptoms of a corona infection. After you are cured of the infection, it does not always mean that you immediately get your smell and taste back. ENT doctors and scientists are busy looking for the cause and its course. In the meantime, more and more studies are published on this topic and more is known about the link between corona and loss of smell. On this page we answer 4 frequently asked questions.
1. I have a sudden loss of smell. Could I be infected with corona?
Yes, that’s possible. According to latest numbers almost 900,000 infections have already been counted in the Netherlands alone at this time (January 2021). International studies show that about 70% percent of people who are infected indicate that they have complaints about the loss of smell. The loss of smell and / or taste can therefore certainly indicate that you are infected with the corona virus. It is important that your nose is not blocked as it is then not certain whether you really suffer from a loss of smell.
2. Will my sense of smell recover?
Often yes, but that is not always the case. In most cases the sense of smell returns on its own after 2 to 4 weeks after infection. In about 50% of all cases, the sense of smell will fully recover during this time. After eight weeks, 76% of infected people have fully recovered. “Only” four percent did not experience any improvement after eight weeks.
Loss of taste is also a result of loss of smell. Many people can still experience flavors with the tongue, but no longer get the smells through the nose. As a result, the taste is no longer properly linked to the smell and that results in a different experience of the food.
3. When should I see the doctor due to loss of smell?
Loss of smell is a clear symptom related to a corona infection, in some cases it can take a while for the sense of smell to fully return. If the smell has not returned after 4-8 weeks, it is advisable to see a doctor. The doctor may refer you to the ENT specialist for further advice and examination.
4. What can I do about loss of smell?
Our first advice is: be patient. Recovery of the sense of smell takes time. In addition, you can try to speed up the process of regaining your sense of smell by doing olfactory exercises. By means of smell training you ensure that recovery is accelerated and that your nose learns to recognize the smells better again. Various odor training sets are available for performing smell training, read more about smell training on this page.
Watch this video for more information about smell training!