It has been more than two years of the appearance of the deadly coronavirus. With long research and discoveries, scientists were able to discover a vaccine. However, a mutant variant of the coronavirus is the real challenge. Once again, the new variant omicron has become a threat among us.
With the widespread of new variant omicron across the globe, scientists are working more on finding the spread and new risk associated with it. Similarly, there is an enormous dilemma regarding the vaccine’s effectiveness against omicron.
Here are the details about the new variant omicron, its threat, and the effect of the vaccine. So, keep on reading.
Do we need to worry about omicron?
Variants are the biggest challenge for ending pandemic and severe effects of imposed lockdown. Many countries have again declared lockdown, and with that, people are also getting hopeless and frustrated.
Further, scientists claim that new variants will continue to emerge. Similarly, the WHO updated new variant omicron is spreading more rapidly than any previously detected coronavirus strain.
Besides, the faster spread of its multiple mutations makes it a more dangerous variant. Scientists claim it has more than thirty mutations in its spike protein (binding protein of virus to cells) greater than Delta variants.
Does it result in more severe symptoms?
Already vaccinated people show milder symptoms than non-vaccinated people. Still, more research has to be carried out for the actual severity of this variant.
However, the incubation period of the new variant omicron is relatively shorter than previous types. That means it can spread faster.
Many reports suggest that only fewer people show severe symptoms from omicron and hospitalization rate is also low.
How do new variant omicron symptoms differ from others?
Till now, reports suggest fatigue is one of the significant symptoms. Besides, the prominent symptoms are mild headaches, cough, body ache, runny nose, scratchy throat, and congestion.
Further, unlike the Delta variant, people have neither reported a significant draw in oxygen level nor the loss of taste or smell.
Is the new variant omicron more contagious?
Although in-depth research regarding its severity is still going on, to date, it has been found more contagious than other variants. New cases are rising exponentially day by day. It has become a severe threat in countries like South Africa, England, the U.S., and Scotland.
In Nepal, daily new cases are rising vigorously, outcompeting all previous coronavirus strains.
Is vaccination effective against new variant omicron?
It is the most debated question after the appearance of the omicron. Some laboratory studies suggest it might be resistant to vaccines however couldn’t evade them entirely. However, more research is needed before drawing any conclusions.
According to the findings, two shots of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine are most effective against new variants. It is 70% effective against severe symptoms development. The same vaccine was found 90% effective in the case of the Delta variant.
Another research suggests that booster shot help in increasing antibody levels in the body, eventually giving protection against new variant omicron. Preliminary laboratory data suggests it can increase up to 37 times more antibodies in the body.
Similarly, one shot of the J & J vaccine or two-shot of mRNA vaccine is ineffective in protecting from infection from new variant omicron.
Who has been affected?
Till now, the exact threat of new variant omicron is not clear. But, children and infants are at higher risk than other people. However, the effect on older people is still not clear.
Further, vaccinated people have less severe symptoms compared to non-vaccinated people.
Summing up all,
Let’s hope the battle against the coronavirus and its new variants will soon end. But, till then, stay safe and wear masks until any discoveries.