If you have been lucky enough to not catch COVID-19 since the pandemic began, the omicron variant soon may change that even if you've been vaccinated.

There is a misconception about the COVID-19 vaccines and that they are to keep you from catching the virus when in all actuality they were designed to prevent severe illness and death.

The winter months are when flu season and colds are at their highest rate of infection and the same goes for all the variants of the COVID-19 virus. This is why it's more important to go back to wearing a mask, washing hands, social distancing, and staying away from large groups of people while indoors.

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The omicron variant is highly contagious compared to its predecessors and this is why so many vaccinated people have been getting COVID-19 lately.

The plus to being vaccinated is if and when you get the omicron variant, you may not appear very sick but you are still highly contagious to others even though they have been fully vaccinated.

If you haven't gotten vaccinated or your booster shot yet, now is as good of a time as any. With all the holiday gatherings, people traveling all across the nation and around the world for the holidays, it's only likely that in 2 to 6 weeks another huge rise in cases is inevitable.

The good news is the Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines all offer strong protection against serious illness from omicron. So if you don't want to miss any work or the kids miss any school or risk infecting others it only makes sense to get vaccinated or get your booster shot.

According to WOOD, getting boosters particularly with the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines rev up levels of the antibodies to help fend off infection.

If you are vaccinated and you come in contact with the omicron variant you will most likely have mild symptoms but if you are unvaccinated you may experience a severe infection and may even need hospital care.

The whole point is to stay alive and out of the hospital. Wear your mask, social distance, keep your hands clean, get vaccinated, or your booster shot. Stay away from large gatherings indoors. You still may get the virus even if you check all the boxes above but you won't have to worry about the infection giving you severe illness.

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