The Omicron variant has been driving a daily surge in cases, reaching more than 100,000 Brits so far. Scientists and researchers have now been able to identify the symptoms of this highly transmissible strain. People who tested positive for Omicron are also self-reporting the warning signs. Here’s how to spot them.
Most people are now familiar with the original symptoms linked to Covid, which detail cough, fever and loss or change to taste or smell.
However, the new Omicron variant seems to be causing slightly different symptoms you might have not heard of before.
As the NHS website only lists the original three symptoms, it might be difficult to connect the signs that are bothering you with the new strain.
That’s why being aware of the emerging symptoms could help you spot it and protect others.
READ MORE: Omicron symptoms: The sign on your skin which could be signalling the new variant
The research into symptoms comes from a variety of sources, including scientists and the ZOE COVID Study app.
The ZOE app has been monitoring the spike in infections in London, collecting data from its users about the new signs linked to Omicron.
While half of the people who tested positive have reported suffering from the original coronavirus symptoms, the other half has been experiencing different signs.
Two emerging Omicron symptoms include loss of appetite and nausea.
The ZOE COVID Study app has shared loss of appetite to be a “common symptom” of the new infection.
This was concluded based on the reports of the app’s contributors, detailing this sign linked with eating to be prevalent.
Nausea has been listed by a professor of Genetic Epidemiology at King’s College London Tim Spector.
The professor said about patients with Omicron: “Quite a few of them had nausea, slight temperature, sore throats and headaches.”
Spector added that nausea and loss of appetite tend to be appearing in double jabbed and even boosted.
One other symptom, linked to the digestive system, reported by those with the new variant is also vomiting.
But the five main symptoms linked to the new variant seem to be:
- Scratchy throat
- Mild muscle aches
- Extreme tiredness
- Dry cough
- Night sweats.
Some of these have been reported by a South African doctor Dr Angelique Coetzee, who first warned of the new strain.
As the signs of the new Covid variant can vary, the most reliable way of confirming Omicron seems to be getting a PCR test.
PCR tests are used for people with symptoms as these are then sent to the lab, where the infection can be properly confirmed.
This is different from lateral flow tests as only people without symptoms are being encouraged to use those. For example, before mingling with others indoors.
Remember, if you suffer from any coronavirus symptoms you have to self-isolate and get your PCR test.