Omicron Variant: What you need to Know?

Omicron Variant: What you need to Know?
Published : Feb 04, 2024
Last Updated : Feb 07, 2024

The omicron variant of COVID-19 has turned out to be a major strain of the virus spreading in India and other parts of the world. This variant is spreading more easily when compared to the previous strains as it has more mutations when compared to other variants.

When a virus is spreading extensively and causing several infections, the possibility of the virus mutating rises. Keep one thing in your mind, the more chances a virus has to spread, the more opportunities it has to experience transformations.

A new variant like Omicron is a big reminder that the COVID-19 pandemic is yet not over. This makes it vital for people to get the vaccine whenever available and continue to follow all the prevailing advice on avoiding the spread of the virus-like wearing masks, physical distancing, regular handwashing & keeping indoor areas ventilated.

What are the symptoms of omicron?

All the variants including delta and omicron cause the same COVID-19 symptoms like fatigue, cough, and fever. However, some people suffering from omicron also lose their smell as well as taste.

However, your chance of suffering from a serious disease like pneumonia that requires treatment in the hospital is less. People who are fully vaccinated tend to experience very mild symptoms of omicron.

On the other hand, unvaccinated people suffer from serious symptoms of omicron that can even lead to hospitalization and death. You must know that omicron is more likely to make you suffer from the symptoms if you have been tested positive before.

Patients affected by the omicron variant might also experience dizziness and extreme fatigue. These symptoms might take the time of two to three days to appear after being infected with the virus. Some of the other symptoms also include sore hands, fever, muscular fatigue, coughing, sore throat, cold, and elevated heart rate.

How long do the symptoms of omicron last?

A number of people who test positive with the omicron variant usually suffer from some symptoms for a couple of weeks. Though people who have long covid-19 symptoms might suffer from health problems for four and even more weeks after they are infected first.

What is the omicron variant BA.2 and how it is different from the original omicron variant?

The new omicron variant BA.2 is almost 50% more transmissible when compared to the original omicron strain BA.1. You need to understand that Omicron BA.1 causes the same seriousness of disease and symptoms but it affects people who are younger.

It is believed that people who are infected with omicron BA.1 often get infected with omicron BA.2. This version of omicron is either more infectious that it is capable of overcoming vaccine or previous infection immunity, or it can dodge immunity because of its mutation.

In order to protect yourself from the Omicron variant, getting COVID-19 vaccines are necessary. Along with this, masking is also vital.

Where is the omicron variant present?

It is important to know that omicron is not detected in almost every country and this variant was first detected in November 2021.

Is the omicron variant more dangerous when compared to other COVID-19 variants?

Early findings suggested that there is a decreased risk of hospitalization for omicron when compared to the delta variant. But now WHO has warned people that omicron should not be considered mild because its increased transmission can lead to hospitalization. 

This strain is more likely to affect the frontline workers and healthcare systems which can lead to more deaths. Keep one thing in your mind, all the variants of Covid-19 can cause serious disease or even death.

As a result, it is essential to prevent the spread of this deadly virus and decrease your risk of exposure to the virus as well.

Is the omicron variant highly infectious?

If compared to the previous variants, the omicron variant is more infectious. But avoiding the crowded spaces, being vaccinated, and taking all other essential precautions help in averting the spread of COVID-19. All these small actions are effective against other variants too.

When it comes to the omicron variant, there are a number of mutations almost 30 that are unique, making the virus more dangerous. This variant spreads more easily than past COVID-19 variants and causes illness.

However, there is good news and you don’t need to panic because there are several ways to safeguard yourself from the omicron variant.

How you can protect yourself from the omicron variant?

Here are some easy ways that can help you to protect from the omicron variant:

Get vaccinated

One of the best ways to stop the virus from transforming is slowing down its spread and the perfect way to slow their spread is through vaccinations. Doctors say that all the existing vaccines are quite effective in offering protection against serious illness, hospitalization, and even death from all the variants of COVID-19.

Now the booster shots have also been introduced and the boosters are more than a top-off antibody level. The booster might also aid in extending your defense in a way that provides the best protection not only against omicron but also from several other future variants.

So, make sure you are vaccinated on time in order to safeguard yourself against the omicron and other variants.

Masking and distancing

Masking, distancing and other health measures like good hand hygiene are showing positive results in decreasing the infection from a number of viruses including coronavirus.

When stepping out, wear a mask and maintain distance from people to prevent the spread of omicron. This will also lessen the chance of the virus to survive as well as spread.

Apart from this, you must strictly avoid crowded or poorly ventilated spaces. In order to improve the ventilation inside your home or office, open windows. You must also wash your hands regularly to kill germs and save yourself from the deadly virus.

So, get vaccinated, use masks, maintain social distancing, and wash hands regularly to stay away from the omicron variant.