Minimizing COVID Vaccine Side Effects

When it comes to avoiding side effects from the COVID-19 vaccine, is there something we can do or take ahead of time to lessen the potential of developing them?

With taking over-the-counter pain medication, Dr. Janice Johnston with Redirect Health says there’s not enough science out there to show how it could interact with the COVID vaccine if taken beforehand.

“There have been varying reports in the past – does Tylenol or ibuprofen given before a vaccination really help? There have been some studies in the past, not with COVID, some say it does, some say it doesn’t. The CDC is recommending that we do not pre-dose before your vaccination with Tylenol or ibuprofen and the reason is we’re just not 100% sure if it has anything to do with your body’s immune response to getting the vaccination.”

What about staying hydrated? It’s a good idea whether or not you’re getting a vaccine, but it may actually help reduce the side effects of a fever you could develop.

“We always think being hydrated is a good idea. So if you’re well-hydrated and you do develop a fever, that helps, right? So your body and your tissues do way better when you’re hydrated. The other thing to think about is if you’re going to one of these vaccination lines, where you’re in your car, it’s going to start to get warm. Being hydrated always helps and if that can help stave off some of these side effects, that’s always a good idea.”

Bottom line: take it easy the next day just in case.

“Plan ahead. Make sure you don’t have something big going on the next day. Make sure you get some rest. Get some fluids afterward. We do like that you get your arm moving after the shot. Maybe don’t do a big arm workout or something like that. And a nice warm or cool compress over the area where you got the vaccination done, that can ease some of the arm pain.”

A cool bath can also be soothing for your symptoms.

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