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Omicron variant: The first symptom of the new variant is one you can hear

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Every week we are learning more and more about the Omicron variant. We are learning about its transmissibility. We are learning about its effectiveness against the vaccines. And we are learning about its symptoms.

The first symptom, according to scientists may be one that you can hear rather than feel.

According to experts from, a South African health insurer, the first symptom of Omicron is change in your voice.

Scientists have known for a while that the Omicron variant results in a ‘scratchy throat’; but knowing in what order the symptoms arrive can help people to act early to stop the spread.

This is because you’ll experience the change in your voice and feel encouraged to get tested to find out if you COVID-19.

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Data from the ZOE Covid App, in which people input their symptoms, has also found that people are also reporting developing a ‘husky voice’ as a result of the variant.

This is all part of a steep learning curve that scientists in the UK and around the word since the Omicron variant was first detected just over a month ago.

In that time, we have seen that, whilst it results in milder symptoms than the Delta variant, that it is more infectious.

This is why the Government brought in Plan B measures in the earlier part of this month.

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However, this same administration has been criticised for not going as far as the devolved governments.

What is meant by this is, when it comes to Covid restrictions, each of the four nations in the UK, England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, are allowed to put in restrictions when they like.

This a four nations approach where each nation is not only allowed to put in restrictions when they like but also in what form.

On Boxing Day Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland each brought in new restrictions to try and curb the spread of Omicron.

Meanwhile, in England, Boris Johnson has decided not to bring in new restrictions.

This has puzzled many scientific experts given the steep rise in hospitalisations, particularly in London, that at is at the epicentre of the Omicron wave.

The Conservatives have pinned their hopes of avoiding more restrictions with the booster programme.

Since it was expanded, millions of Britons have either been given their booster.

However, the main issue is not so much the vaccinated, but the unvaccinated.

The vast majority of people in intensive care with COVID-19 are the unvaccinated; those who have no jabs at all.

With millions still unvaccinated, this means there is still the potential for an NHS weakened by a decade of cuts and two COVID-19 waves to become overwhelmed.

It is crucial then that the vaccination role out continues and people continue to be careful where they can, taking lateral flow tests before they meet others and wearing masks.



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