Expert shares key Covid symptoms to watch out for this winter

Coronavirus: Key symptoms of the new Centaurus variant

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With Covid cases rising again, many Britons might fall victim to various viruses in the upcoming months. Fortunately, an expert has shared the key Covid symptoms that could help identify the virus this winter. From a sore throat to an aching body, here’s how to spot the culprit.

The Office for National Statistics reports that Covid infections in the UK are surging again, showing the biggest increase since the summer wave.

Furthermore, hospital admissions are also seeing a record peak, with the NHS England’s most up-to-date data suggesting there were 9,631 infected people in hospital beds on October 5.

This represents a 37 percent increase compared to the last highest figure, which was recorded in August.

With cases predicted to soar even higher, spoke to Professor Denis Kinane, leading scientist and found of Cignpost diagnostics about the “main” Covid symptoms to spot during the colder months.

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Kinane said: “Disease symptoms caused by infection with the latest subvariants are not markedly divergent from earlier Omicron versions.”

The expert shared that the key Covid symptoms adults can experience this autumn and winter include:

  • High temperature
  • New, continuous cough
  • Aching body
  • Tiredness or exhaustion
  • Shortness of breath
  • Headache
  • Sore throat
  • Loss or change to your sense of smell or taste
  • Loss of appetite
  • Diarrhoea
  • Feeling sick or being sick

The Zoe Covid Study App adds that Omicron seems to be causing predominantly flu-like symptoms, ranging from a runny nose to a sore throat.

Whereas, signs like loss of smell and taste seem to be “much less common” with this variant.

Furthermore, Omicron BA.5 remains the dominant strain, responsible for driving up the majority of cases in the UK.

When it comes to how early symptoms can crop up, Kinane reminded that the incubation period for coronavirus is set at two to 14 days.

He added: “But the average time before showing symptoms is thought to be five days.

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“However, [Omicron’s] incubation period may be shorter than those of previous variants. Recent research suggests the incubation period might be three days.

“We also cannot forget that many people are asymptomatic. Some people may have the virus and never know.”

Fortunately, there’s also plenty you can do to protect yourself from the virus in the upcoming months.

Kinane said: “Reasonable precautions include using face masks in enclosed spaces, especially at mass participation events, getting tested in case of appearance of even minor symptoms, avoiding socialising in crowded indoor venues, and maintaining adequate social distancing when interacting with vulnerable or immunocompromised individuals.

“A very critical step we all must take is to get tested when we have known cases in our midst and when found positive, we must isolate ourselves from others until we have tested negative or ten days have elapsed since symptoms or initial positive test result.

“We should not go back to the workplace still potentially contagious and spread the virus further.

“Taking the booster jab when invited and increasing vaccination coverage across the UK will remain critical tools in our fight against the virus.

“It is vital to remember that Covid is still a dangerous and highly infectious disease, especially for vulnerable groups. It is crucial that we continue to remain vigilant and cautious.”

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