The focal point of tackling this virus is shifting more and more to vaccination efforts as the government is aiming for a lofty 1 billion eligible people to be vaccinated by the end of the year. As of 5th June 2021, over 215 million people had already received their first dose. Soon it may be your turn to get vaccinated and protect yourself, and you might be curious, nervous or fearful about what to expect. This guide is based on information from people who have gone through the vaccination process firsthand. Have a look as we explore post-vaccination care, and what you should be ready for:
But First, Is It Safe And Why Should I Get Vaccinated?
The answer to the question is a resounding YES! Not only have the vaccines in India (Covishield, Covaxin) been tested before the vaccination drives began, but even now as millions get vaccinated there has been no sign as to any danger from them. The risk of adverse effects from these vaccines is literally a million to one. As to why you need to get vaccinated, well simply put it’s the fastest way for all of us as a whole and you as an individual, to get out of the house and finally move on to regular normal life! Now, you’ve decided to go ahead with the vaccine, what happens next?
Getting the Shot Is Relatively Painless
If you’re worried about the injection itself, don’t! The syringes used are extremely tiny and apart from a slight prick after the initial jab goes in, there is no pain. Most doctors suggest that you look away from the point of injection, which for the Covid-19 vaccine is typically on your shoulder/upper arm.
The Next Few Hours
Over the next few hours, the only real symptom you’ll notice is mild pain and an achy feeling in your arm where you got the vaccination. The recommendation is to leave it as it is and do not exert your arm by carrying any heavy equipment or performing intensive tasks. Be sure to take physical rest immediately after you start experiencing aches in your arm.
Fevers and Headaches
The next day or about 8-10 hours after you receive the vaccination, you might experience headaches and mild fevers. This is normal and expected, most doctors will recommend you take an over the counter painkiller or anti-inflammatory tablet (such as Paracetamol) and nothing else. It is important to eat food regularly, stay hydrated and get a lot of rest.
Fatigue and Body Aches
Speaking of rest, in some cases, you might find yourself unable to perform your regular daily routine due to fatigue and body aches. Again, don’t worry, this too is normal. The vaccine is training your immune system and body to identify and destroy the Coronavirus which can sometimes cause you to feel sick. The treatment for these symptoms is identical to the previous symptoms: hydration, healthy food and a painkiller. Do not overuse painkillers and do not stay in bed for the entire day, try to get at least a few minutes of very mild exercise (walking around the house). Your doctor might suggest that you take vitamin supplements during this time.
The Next Day
For some people, the vaccine has effects that last for two days. In that case, typically the effects are milder. Try to be a little more active, however, ensure that you do not exert yourself in any way. Most people are fully back to normal after 1-2 days and can perform their regular activities with no issues. There are a few things you should be on the lookout for, apart from the usual symptoms.
Adverse Reactions to The Vaccine
In rare cases, some people experience allergic or adverse reactions to the Covid-19 vaccine, these include difficulty breathing, swelling of the face or throat, a fast heartbeat, dizziness and nausea =. If you experience these symptoms and are unable to breathe, please seek medical attention immediately. However, these kinds of reactions are uncommon, so while you should be aware of them you should not stress about them too much.
Important Guidelines To Follow
Doctors recommend that you stop alcohol consumption and smoking during this time as it interferes with the vaccination process and might lead to severe effects. Additionally, it takes between 2-3 weeks for the antibodies to be fully developed so it is vital to maintain all Covid-19 protocols during this time such as wearing a mask in public, social distancing and regular hand sanitization. Be sure to make a note for your second shot of the vaccination, as you’re not fully vaccinated until you get both shots!
Now that you have an idea of what to expect, you’re ready to take the shot. So get yourself registered at the official COWIN website and book yourself a slot. Although there are a few effects that can happen, the benefits of getting vaccinated as soon as possible are immense. And who knows, you might be one of the lucky people who face only mild symptoms!