Covid-19 vaccine: What to do about side effects


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All vaccines, including those for COVID-19, carry the possibility of side effects. Across the globe, there are currently 15 COVID-19 vaccines that are authorized for use in at least one country each.

The most common side effects following COVID-19 vaccines are fatigue, a fever, headaches, body aches, chills, nausea, diarrhea, and pain at the site of injection, according to the World Health OrganizationTrusted Source.

Everyone is affected differently by vaccination. Some people may experience few or no side effects while others may experience multiple side effects and feel pretty ill.

In this feature, we explain what to do about side effects of a COVID-19 vaccine. Stay informed with live updates on the current COVID-19 outbreak and visit our coronavirus hub for more advice on prevention and treatment.

Anyone concerned about the side effects of vaccination might wonder they should take an over-the-counter medication before getting the vaccine, to ward off any side effects before they occur.

However, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)Trusted Source do not recommend it. While taking steps to prevent symptoms of other health issues is a good idea, that is not the case here.

It is best to wait and see whether any side effects arise, then treat these individually, as opposed to guessing and taking several over-the-counter products ahead of time. A person should visit their local pharmacist before taking any over-the-counter medications to ease side effects of the vaccine.

Because a pharmacist is aware of a person’s medications and medical history, they have a good understanding of any interactions that may occur.

But what if a person is unable to contact their pharmacist and needs immediate relief from muscle aches, injection site pain, a fever, or a combination of these issues? In this case, the following may help.

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