How to respond to common side effects of COVID-19 Vaccination?

Experiencing side effects for the next two days after COVID-19 vaccination is normal. As the government has a COVID-19 vaccine roll-out plan in place, let us discuss some facts about the common side effects of COVID-19 Vaccination.

How do the COVID-19 vaccines work?

mRNA vaccines, like Pfizer and Moderna, provide instructions to your cells for how to make a coronavirus protein. This protein will trigger an immune response that will help to protect you against COVID-19.

Viral vector vaccines, like Astra Zeneca, use a virus that’s been made harmless to produce coronavirus proteins in your body without causing disease. Similar to mRNA vaccines, this protein will trigger an immune response that will help to protect you against COVID-19.

What are the common side effects that may occur after getting the COVID-19 vaccine?

As is the case with any vaccine, there could be side effects. This happens because the vaccine triggers your immune system to start fighting.  Side effects are generally mild and might include tenderness at the site of the injection, a low fever, aching joints, a headache, or lethargy. However, none of these symptoms should last more than a week, or lead to a high fever. If they do, contact your primary health care provider.

A more serious side effect could be a severe allergic reaction–also known as anaphylaxis. This is more common in people who have existing sensitivities to materials in the vaccine. If you’re concerned about allergies or side effects, talk to your primary health care provider. Over-the-counter medicines, such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen can give relief in general conditions.


What measures you can take to reduce the impact of COVID-19 Vaccine side effects?

  1. Drink more fluid and wear loose clothes to reduce fever.
  2. Keep your arms active after vaccination
  3. Apply a clean, cool, wet washcloth over the area to reduce pain and tenderness
  4. Dress lightly and comfortably

Visit a doctor if,

  1. The redness or tenderness where you got the shot increases after 24 hours.
  2. Your side effects are worrying you or do not seem to be going away after a few days.

Learn more about COVID-19 resources.