Doctors have revealed the three things you should avoid after getting the updated Covid vaccine — and the one thing you should do if you feel under the weather.
Whatever someone’s age though, people can experience adverse side effects like a fever, headache, body aches and fatigue after getting the Covid vaccine.
New York-based infectious disease expert Dr Thomas Russo advised against taking the common pain reliever ibuprofen and recommended the first line of defense should be acetaminophen.
Several studies have shown the drug can reduce the action of the immune system and cause the production of fewer virus-fighting antibodies.
This can make vaccinations less effective because they cannot properly prime the immune system, experts fear, leaving someone more prone to severe infections.
Experts say those over 75 years old should prioritize getting the flu and Covid shot this year (stock image)
Official data shows that the positivity rate for Covid — or the proportion of tests picking up the virus — is no longer falling. This suggests infections may again be rising
The above shows flu cases that have been reported to the CDC. They are a vast underestimate, however, because only a small subset of patients are tested for the flu
Dr Russo told Yahoo: ‘I generally recommend avoiding ibuprofen after a vaccination, if possible.’
The experts also warned against taking steroids after the shot, which people may be on for arthritis, autoimmune diseases or respiratory problems.
Studies show these can also make vaccines less effective by suppressing the immune system.
However, Dr Russo said people on those medications should talk to their doctor first: ‘Most people on steroids cannot just stop them.
‘If you’re on a more potent immunosuppressant medication, it’s a good idea to have a discussion with your healthcare provider about the timing of your shot.’
Other experts also recommended avoiding excessive alcohol intake over the days after getting the vaccination.
Dr Amesh Adalja, an infectious diseases expert at Johns Hopkins University in Maryland, warned alcohol would likely ‘blunt the immune response to the vaccine if given in the days after vaccination’.
Studies already show drinking to excess can suppress the activity of white blood cells — critical components of the immune system — and slash the production of antibodies, which may make a vaccine less effective.
When it comes to what you should do – the experts agreed on an activity to start if you feel sick from vaccination.
Dr Russo said: ‘It’s a great opportunity to snuggle up on the couch with a good book and the clicker to do some binge-watching.
‘Keep in mind that these symptoms will go away on their own, even without treatment.’
The doctors also stressed the importance of hydration and drinking plenty of liquids.
Once recommended to be administered on the same day as the flu shot, there are now concerns getting both vaccines could raise the risk of stroke — with some experts instead suggesting patients should get the shots on separate days.
The US is rolling out the updated Covid vaccine this year via private insurance plans, which are promising to foot the costs.
But surveillance shows barely one in ten Americans have come forward for the vaccine.
The latest data up to early November shows 36million adults had gotten the shot, including 3.5million children, out of more than 329million people who are eligible.
For comparison, an estimated 91million Americans — or 34 percent of the adult population — have come forward for the flu vaccine.
And 11million people over the age of 60 years, or 13 percent of the age group, have come forward to get the shot against respiratory syncytial virus infection (RSV).
This map shows flu activity by state. It reveals activity is highest in Louisiana and Puerto Rico
And this graph shows how the number of people admitted to hospital with the flu is starting to tick up as winter approaches
On the updated Covid booster, health experts said the numbers were roughly equal to the same time last year — showing uptake was not dropping further.
But they have warned many Americans are now steering clear of Covid shots because of vaccine fatigue and as they already have immunity from previously contracting the virus.
This year’s updated Covid booster vaccine was designed to target the BA.4 and BA.5 Covid variants, which were the main versions circulating this summer.
But scientists say they should still provide substantial protection against severe disease from HV.1 and EG.5, the newly dominant variants.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) data shows there were 3,002 flu infections recorded in the week to November 12, up 60 percent on the same time the previous week.
CDC experts say this figure is a vast undercount because most people who catch the flu do not get tested or have their infection recorded.
Covid cases are also no longer falling and the test positivity rate — percentage of Covid tests that detect the virus — has held at about eight percent for two weeks, suggesting cases may again be on the rise.