MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) — Dr. Maureen Padden from USA Health joined WKRG News 5 Monday for our Medical Moment segment to talk about the omicron variant, the symptoms most people experience, and how to treat those symptoms at home.

Padden said most people with omicron will feel like they have an upper respiratory illness. Symptoms look a lot like allergies or a cold. Padden said patients can also have shortness of breath and a cough. Fever, muscle ache and chills, as with a flu, are also possible.

Padden encouraged people to first, stay home. Second, Padden recommended people stay hydrated. Padden also said common flu-like treatments are important, including over the counter fever reducers.

Most people can stay home, said Padden, but patients who have more significant respiratory symptoms should go to a hospital. For example, if someone struggles to complete a sentence or walk across the room. Padden said checking in with your general practitioner is a good idea, because they can help you decide if it’s time to go to the hospital.

Before she left, Padden encouraged everyone to get vaccinated, saying “that’s the single best thing you can do to stay well.”