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Now that the COVID-19 vaccine is widely accessible, more people are scheduling their vaccination appointments. In the United States, approximately 134,445,595 people have received their first COVID-19 vaccine shot, and 87,592,646 people have been fully vaccinated. However, there are a few things you should know before you schedule an appointment to get vaccinated. Below, learn how to get ready for your COVID-19 vaccine.
1. Plan for at least one day off after your appointment
Before scheduling the date of your vaccination, it’s important to have at least one day off after your appointment, particularly for your second shot. It’s possible to feel a few side effects such as arm pain, fatigue, or chills after a vaccine. Some people have said the second dose of COVID-19 vaccines can make you feel similar to having the flu for a day.
Some health experts say that it’s common to feel mild side effects because it means your body is reacting properly to the vaccine. Side effects are also more common with people under the age of 55 years old due to their healthier immune responses. However, It’s also possible to not feel side effects at all.
2. Postpone if you’re sick
According to some health experts, even if you feel sick with a simple cold, you should postpone any COVID-19 vaccination appointments until you feel better. It’s better for you to feel strong before your vaccine appointment since you may face side effects. Additionally, postponing your appointment while you feel sick will ensure the safety of others.
3. Double-check that you’re qualified
Before setting your vaccine appointment, it’s important to know that you are eligible and safe to receive the vaccine. If you are pregnant or have allergies or other underlying medical conditions, health experts recommend that you first talk to your doctor for advice.
4. Bring proof of ID and residency
It’s good to prepare for your vaccination appointment by knowing which forms of identification you will need. This is especially important since different vaccination sites may have different rules about which forms of ID are required. Some sites may only require proof of address, while some other sites may require a government-issued ID. To be better safe than sorry, bring at least one form of identification and one type of physical proof of residency.
Always double-mask for your COVID-19 vaccination appointment. Wearing two masks can provide you much-needed protection while you’re at the vaccination site.
6. Don’t take painkillers beforehand
Health experts believe it’s best to avoid painkillers before vaccination unless you regularly take them for a medical condition. It’s believed that some painkillers weaken your immune system response, though the evidence behind this claim is limited. Certain painkillers that target inflammation might negatively affect your body’s response to a COVID-19 vaccine.
Some people experience arm pain after the vaccine, making them want to use a painkiller. However, you can safely get pain relief by holding a cool washcloth over the arm in which you received the shot.
7. Set up your second appointment before leaving the facility
Don’t put off getting the second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine after you get your first dose: Just one dose is not effective. Therefore, it’s best to schedule your second dose before you leave the vaccination site or facility. Before you leave your first vaccination appointment, make sure you can secure a date for your second dose.
How will you prepare for your COVID-19 vaccine appointment? Share your thoughts in the comments!