As with most medicines, it’s not unreasonable to expect side effects to taking them, all the more when they are developed in record times. Regular vaccines work by tricking the immune system into reacting as though it was fighting a full-on pathogen invasion.
Now covid vaccines are instead based around delivering RNA messenger molecules to human cells, to get them to produce ’spike proteins’ that help fight the virus. The British-made AstraZeneca vaccine, however, uses a benign chimp virus to deliver these instructions. This has the advantage of making it far easier to transport and store, far from Pfizer and BioNTech’s minus 70 degree storage requirements. It will also be sold at a fraction of the cost of its two main competitors, and without profit-seeking.
Common side effects
All being said, these vaccines still have a host of expected side effects. Among the most common side effects for the vaccine are:
- Mild fever
- General fatigue
- A red, swollen, sometimes painful area where the shot was given
- Muscle and joint aches
Having these is no cause for alarm, however, as they are simply the signs that the vaccine is doing its job, and causing your organism to equip itself in the upcoming fight against the virus.
Relieving side effects
As the shot is usually in the upper arm, gently moving that arm may relieve some of your soreness. The fever and chills should pass quickly, and in the meantime it’s best to cover yourself appropriately, and get plenty of hydration. If possible, try to organise your schedule so that the day post-vaccine isn’t too taxing, and you may recuperate in restful conditions.
If the side effects should persist for more than a couple days, do not hesitate to contact your GP.