Fact: You can't get COVID-19 from the vaccines. It's impossible. But you may feel some side effects for a day or two. You may have pain, including pain and/or swelling in the arm where you got the vaccine, a low-grade fever, chills, tiredness, headache or muscle aches. These side effects may hit you even harder after you receive the second dose of the vaccine and after your booster. But don't worry. These are normal signs that the vaccines are working and building protection to the virus.
Fact: Thanks to existing infectious disease research, along with increased financial support and focused scientific efforts, the vaccines were developed quickly. Vaccines only receive emergency use authorization from the FDA when they've determined that the expected benefits outweigh any potential risks. Plus, the vaccines have been tested on a diverse group of people. Adults of all races, ages, cultures and ethnicities, as well as those with underlying health conditions, were included in the clinical trials.
The Pfizer vaccine has now received full approval from the Food and Drug Administration for individuals 16 years of age and older.
Fact: The COVID-19 vaccines use a substance called mRNA. It helps your body make large amounts of antibodies. These antibodies help protect you from the virus. mRNA vaccines do not interact with a person's DNA because the mRNA does not enter the nucleus of the cell. Once the mRNA does its job, your cells break it down and get rid of it.
False: Even if you've had COVID-19, experts still recommend getting vaccinated to make sure you're protected long-term. It's still not clear how long natural immunity lasts if you've been sick and recovered or tested positive but didn't have symptoms. Everyone is different, and the vaccines will only increase your ability to protect yourself and those around you.
Fact: While there have been a few reports of severe allergic reactions to the COVID-19 vaccines, not only are these instances extremely rare, but they are also easily treated. That's why you'll be asked to stay for 15–30 minutes after you get your vaccine so you can be watched to make sure you don't have a reaction. If you've had a severe allergic reaction in the past, talk to your doctor for reassurance that the vaccine is safe for you.
Fact: There is currently no evidence that supports the claim that getting vaccinated will cause problems with a woman's fertility. If you are pregnant, or plan on becoming pregnant, your doctor may still recommend that you be vaccinated. It's important to talk to your doctor about what's right for you.
Fact: The vaccine protects you from serious illness if you're exposed to the virus, but you may still spread it to others around you who have not been vaccinated. It's important to continue to wear a mask, wash your hands and watch your distance. And keep in mind that even if you're wearing a mask, you should still get vaccinated. The vaccine and our continued vigilance are the best defenses against COVID-19.
Fact: The vaccines do not contain any form of microchip or device used for tracking people or gathering personal information. This myth started after a social media video containing altered and out-of-context interviews went viral.
Fact: It won't. However, it's possible to be become ill from exposure to other viruses. It's best to fully protect yourself by getting recommended vaccines like the flu vaccine or the COVID-19 vaccine and to stay away from people who are sick.
Fact: Vaccine eligibility includes people age 5 and older. Vaccines are readily available. If you have questions about where to get your vaccine, contact your doctor's office, your pharmacy or your local health department.