On November 24, 2021 scientists from South Africa identified new coronavirus variant, known as ‘Omicron’ or ‘B.1.529’. This latest variant of COVID-19 disease is highly transmissible than Delta variant. At present, Omicron got detected in 106 different countries as per WHO officials.
The main concern of the scientists is that the new variant is highly mutable that can evade the effect of vaccinations. During the peak of Delta variant, upper respiratory symptoms became common however the loss of smell and taste was less common.
Experts have put forward all possible omicron variant signs and symptoms which are mentioned below.
Common Symptoms of Omicron
Dr. Angelique Coetzee, a South African doctor was the first to alert authorities on the presence of new variant. Omicron symptoms include a scratchy throat, muscle aches, fatigue and night sweats.
The data from research also showed five more symptoms of Omicron infection. They include sneezing, fatigue (mild or severe), headache, runny rose, and a sore throat.
The WHO officials confirmed Omicron infection in Europe with common symptoms like cough, fever, and sore throat.
Some of the less common symptoms of Omicron include skin rashes, discoloration of toes or fingers, pains, diarrhea, aches, and eye irritation.
Serious symptoms of Omicron include shortness of breath, chest pain, loss of mobility or speech, difficulty breathing, and confusion.
Are Omicron Signs Milder Than Other Variants?
Coetzee described Omicron symptoms as ‘very, very mild’ in comparison to the Delta variant. Patients are not experiencing any sort of loss of taste or smell and drop in oxygen level with Omicron.
A South African study suggests there are less risk of severe disease and hospitalization in infected people. On the other hand, Imperial College London or ICL said, ‘We find no evidence for risk of hospitalization attendance of Omicron having different severity from Delta’
Possible Impact of Vaccine on Omicron Symptoms
Experts say the effect of Omicron symptom on vaccinated people might be milder than those who are still not vaccinated.
Chief executive of RSPH (Royal Society for Public Health) says, ‘Growing evidence shows that people who’ve received two doses of the vaccine typically present with less severe symptoms, such as runny nose, headache, sneezing, loss of smell and sore throat.’
‘The people who are fully vaccinated needs to stay vigilant especially to cold-like symptoms and are required to undergo testing if they live around working people who are at higher risk of Omicron symptoms’
How Long Is Omicron Incubation Period?
The time taken to develop symptom for an infected person might be shorter as little as three days. That’s why the spread of Omicron might occur at a faster rate as per Johns Hopkins School of Medicine physicians.
Further the length of Omicron incubation period could be shorter or longer as per the number of variables like vaccination status, underlying health problems, and age.
How To Protect Yourself From Omicron Variant?
Here are some of the steps advised by WHO officials to prevent the spreading of COVID-19’s new variant, Omicron,
- Maintain physical distancing
- Wear a mask
- Get vaccinated
- Keep good hygiene
- Ventilate indoor spaces
- Self-isolate in case you develop Omicron symptoms
These were coronavirus omicron variant signs and symptoms you need to protect yourself from.