What tpe of side effects can I expect after receiving the vaccine?
It often varies from person to person, and that’s okay. For some, they have more substantial side effects after the first dose than the second dose. Others feel the subsequent shot gives them more side effects. Yet others still experience little to no side effects after either injection.
If you feel side effects, you may feel:
- Nausea or vomiting
- Joint and bone pain
- Swollen lymph nodes
- Muscle aches
- Pain, redness or swelling at injection spot
These symptoms are typical and are signs that the body is creating a defense against the COVID virus. However, if you feel no side effects, that doesn’t mean your body isn’t making a defense. Again, everyone will respond a bit differently. 1
Be aware of allergic reactions.
Allergic reactions are rare, but you should seek medical attention if you experince the following: 2,3
- Trouble breathing
- Swelling in face or throat
- Itchy mouth or throat
- Rapid heartbeat
Should I get vaccinated if I’ve had COVID?
Yes–As long as you are not currently infected with COVID and have not had a positive test in 2 weeks. It is unknown how long any antibodies you have created from having COVID will protect you from catching it again. A vaccine will give you better protection against the virus.
Similarly, if you currently have a cold or flu or are generally under the weather, you should wait. 4
What if I have a long-term or chronic illness? Should I be vaccinated?
If you suffer from a chronic illness, provided you don’t have a history of allergic reactions to the ingredients in the vaccine, you are likely to clear to get vaccinated. Typically, having vaccine protection will help your body have a better fighting chance against COVID, which is especially important if your body is weaker due to underlying medical conditions. Always ask your doctor if you have concerns. Read more here. 5
Does it cost money to get vaccinated?
The federal government continues to work toward making vaccines widely available for everyone at no cost, no matter which vaccine you choose to receive and if you do or do not have health insurance. 6
Real-Life Vaccine Story: Lucie
GeniusRx Employee & BIPOC
Fully Vaccinated with Pfizer
“I felt anxious at the prospect of getting the vaccine, especially since I am a minority with pre-existing conditions. Would I be okay? But I knew how important it is for everyone to get vaccinated. It took a few weeks to land an appointment, but sign up online was very easy.
I had the vaccine done via drive-thru at a stadium alongside my boyfriend. There were many volunteers to make sure social distancing practices were in place. Everyone wore a mask, including us. It moved surprisingly quickly despite the number of cars there. My boyfriend and I were each asked a few questions. I mentioned I had allergies, and they made a note of it, and then we were ready to be vaccinated by the medical team. Both of us remarked that we barely felt the needle at all, unlike with a flu shot. We waited in an area with other cars for 15 minutes to ensure we were okay before the volunteers signaled to drive on. A nurse gave us some tips on coping with side effects and an appointment for our next shot at the exit. Everyone around us seemed lively the whole time, a bit like a party, as there was a general sense of optimism.
It was all pretty organized and took about 40-50 mins plus drive time. That evening I developed a slight fever, and the next day I was very sore and tired, with some nausea. By the third day, I felt better than before I was vaccinated! It was strange. My boyfriend, who is not a minority and doesn’t have any pre-existing conditions, was mainly tired for a day and had a sore arm for a couple of days. Soon we’ll get the second shot. We both feel fortunate and realize what a privilege it is to have the vaccine available to us.”
COVID Vaccine Resources
Where can I get vaccinated?
There are many ways to sign up for the vaccine, the most accessible being to use VaccineFinder, which displays the following information once you’ve submitted your location:
- Type of vaccine available at that location
- Hours of operation
- Instructions on how to get vaccinated
If you can’t manage to book an appointment at the time you need due to limited availability, don’t give up. Spaces are limited but more open up daily, so check back as often as possible. If you have an underlying medical condition, your doctor’s office may be an option as well. However, if you’re healthy and have difficulty getting access to an appointment, be persistent and don’t give up! The earlier in the day you can search, the more open spots are typically available.
Times are challenging, but we’re here with you fighting the same fight.
GeniusRx will always offer unbiased and unpolitical information based solely on the scientific and medical information at our disposal. Your health and wellness are everything, and we support that sole belief.