Omicron Symptoms Mostly Feel Like This
Want the truth about what it feels like to have COVID? Ask a nurse on the frontlines. The Health In Europe podcast from the World Health Organization Regional Office for Europe, spoke with Laura Lupi, a nurse on the frontlines who worries we have gone "from hope to indifference….as selfishness and arrogance took over as a feeling so much, so that they made people deny the evidence, deny the existence of COVID 19 and deny its danger despite the images that passed every day on television." Although she is stressed that healthcare workers have gone from being heroes to being seen as "pawns" and are "sometimes attacked, even threatened," she is worried about YOU. "There has been an evolution or change in the virus, but to see that there are still cases, it's very heavy." So what are the symptoms to watch for? Read on—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You've Already Had COVID.
First of All, the Frontline Health Worker is Astonished People Aren't Afraid
"It's astonishing that people don't seem to be afraid,"" said Lupi. "First, they were really coming to the hospital, scared and terrified. You could really see the terror in the patient's eyes, but now they come and they almost don't care about having COVID. They don't care about infecting those around them. They don't care about anything. This is very unfortunate because COVID continues to exist, continues to take victims and continues to create discomfort. People just don't seem to care anymore."
Frontline Health Workers Say the Symptoms Look Like This
COVID is "a daily battle, especially with this Omicron variant, which is very contagious. Many of the wards that had been closed months ago had to be reopened. What I can say is that while before vaccines, people were coming to us with COVID and with very serious symptoms, now the symptoms are much more mild" for vaccinated people. "So the workload has fortunately decreased for us as has attention among us healthcare workers. Since we've been vaccinated with three doses, we can work so much more calmly knowing that even if it were to happen and we got infected, at least we are protected by the vaccine," said Lupi.
"What we are finding with the Omicron variant is that people are having symptoms that are similar to a common cold, which is what the vaccination does by changing a severe disease to a milder infection. For people who are vaccinated, they may only have cold symptoms, and they may just blow it off as just some other respiratory virus. But it's really important to get tested because there is no specific symptom that differentiates COVID-19 from another coronavirus or another respiratory virus that's out there. So have a low threshold to get tested if you have symptoms, even of just a cold," says the Mayo Clinic.
Here are Many of the COVID Symptoms
The Zoe Report says the most common Omicron symptoms are:
- runny nose
- fatigue (mild or severe)
- sore throat
As for unvaccinated people? It can be way more severe. "While there were ICU departments dedicated to COVID 19, now they are less busy. They mainly work with unvaccinated people," said Lupi. Adds the Mayo Clinic:
"Signs and symptoms of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) may appear 2 to 14 days after exposure. This time after exposure and before having symptoms is called the incubation period. You can still spread COVID-19 before you have symptoms (presymptomatic transmission). Common signs and symptoms can include:
Early symptoms of COVID-19 may include a loss of taste or smell.
Other symptoms can include:
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Muscle aches
- Sore throat
- Runny nose
- Chest pain
- Pink eye (conjunctivitis)
This list isn't complete. Children have similar symptoms to adults and generally have mild illness."
Frontline Worker Has This Message For You Now
Lupi says you "must continue to pay attention, must need to pay attention because COVID continues to be a dangerous virus. But above all, we must vaccinate those who have not yet done so. Because there was a clear difference between the before and after vaccines, especially now with this new variant, with Omicron, the patients who are coming in now have found out about being positive by accident. Whereas before they arrived with obvious symptoms, such as respiratory failure, cough and fever, now they found out by accident. If, for example, they come into the emergency room because they've fallen—they have a femur fracture—the moment we go do the COVID test for admission, which is a standard practice. Now they found out that they are positive and asymptomatic because they're vaccinated. And therefore it is essential to vaccinate that I think is the main message. Vaccination first."
How to Stay Safe Out There
Get tested if you experience any of these symptoms. And follow the public health fundamentals and help end this pandemic, no matter where you live—get vaccinated or boosted ASAP; if you live in an area with low vaccination rates, wear an N95 face mask, don't travel, social distance, avoid large crowds, don't go indoors with people you're not sheltering with (especially in bars), practice good hand hygiene, and to protect your life and the lives of others, don't visit any of these 35 Places You're Most Likely to Catch COVID.