Ideally, the incubation period of coronavirus, which is the number of days between when you’re infected and when you develop or notice symptoms, can range from 1-14 days, most commonly around 5 days.
As per the World Health Organisation (WHO), “On average it takes five to six days from when someone is infected with the virus for symptoms to show, however it can take up to 14 days.”
However, according to early data, the time it takes for an infected person to develop symptoms after an exposure may be shorter for omicron than for previous variants. While US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention has said that people infected with COVID-19 may be most contagious a few days before or after symptoms onset, experts have said that the window may be shorter for Omicron-infected individuals.
Therefore, if you come in close contact with a confirmed COVID-19 patient or start developing symptoms, get yourself tested immediately.
However, the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) Director-General Dr Balram Bhargava said one should avoid taking a COVID test on the first day as the chances of getting a false negative is higher, irrespective of which test you take.