The UK is in the midst of a fresh Covid outbreak after Omicron cases surged across the country.
Although the Omicron peak has reportedly started to falter and fall in London, plenty of parts of the UK are being gripped by soaring cases of the variant.
As the number of daily Covid cases hit 142,224 on January 9 2022, it's important to keep an eye out for signs of the variant in order to curb the spread.
We're all familiar with the traditional signs of Covid, such as a new cough and fever — however, experts are warning that the new Omicron variant has a few unique symptoms to look out for.
What are the Omicron symptoms?
Omicron symptoms include a fever and lack of energy
The ZOE Covid app lists the basic Omicron symptoms as:
Fatigue (mild or severe)
A report released by the app found that loss of smell and taste has become far less common over the course of the pandemic.
Loss of taste and smell was one of the top ten symptoms earlier in 2021, but it is now ranking at number 17, and only one in five people report experiencing it.
Signs of a Covid rash
Some people with symptomatic Covid have reported rashes on their feet
Experts at the ZOE Covid app believe that the Covid rash appears in three different forms.
- Prickly heat
Finding a rash does not mean you have Covid. However, it could suggest you have the virus, and so it's important to take a lateral flow test to confirm or calm concerns.
What do hives look like?
According to the NHS, hives are often caused by an increased amount of histamine in the body. The rash can appear in different sizes and shapes and it can crop up anywhere.
Hives is often itchy and sometimes feels like a stinging or burning.
Signs of prickly heat
The NHS describe a heat rash as:
- Small, raised spots
- An itchy, prickly feeling
- Mild swelling
Prickly heat can look red on white skin but might be less obvious on black skin.
To calm the itching you can apply a damp cloth or cold wrap to the area. Make sure to tap the inflamed area — don't scratch it. And avoid perfumes and smelly shower gels and creams.
What do chilblains look like?
Chilblains are described on the NHS website as small, itchy, red patches.
They usually appear on the toes and fingers, and are the symptom behind the term ' covid toe '.