Why Does Your Arm Hurt After Covid 19 Shot

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Why does your arm hurt after the COVID-19 vaccine?

What causes the sore arm?

The COVID-19 vaccines are given via intramuscular injections. This means it is directly injected into the arm muscle. Generally, its the deltoid muscle which is the large muscle giving helping the shoulder with its range of motion.

The vaccine triggers inflammation at the site where the shot is administered. This suggests your immunity is being activated. The site of needle insertion is also an injury spot, although a tiny one.

Our bodies fight off infections using a variety of mechanisms. Our immunity tries to break down bacteria, viruses and dead cells. It produces antibodies that then attack the debris left behind after the break down. pieces of the virus left behind by the macrophages. Our immunity also attacks our own cells that have been infected.

What the vaccines do is they trick the immune system. Our body thinks there is a real virus which it needs to quickly remove. Experts explain the soreness in the arm with the analogy of a battlefield.

The arm is the site of a full-fledged war between our white blood cells and the vaccines immunity activating components.

How long will the soreness last?

It can take a few days for your bodys reaction to the jab to calm down. This is the reason some may experience soreness in their arm for some time. Similarly, the pain from the tiny injury might also take a while to go away.

Preventing Arm Pain After Vaccines

There are a few other ways to try to prevent arm pain when youre about to get your shot:

  • Request the vaccine goes in your non-dominant arm. This may help as you wont use it as frequently as your dominant arm and may not notice the soreness as much.
  • Relax your arm before your shot. Injections into clenched muscles can cause more pain.
  • You may be able to request ice or a numbing spray before your vaccination.

Although getting a vaccination isnt usually comfortable, its important to know that arm soreness is normal and usually goes away within a few days. If you have any questions and concerns about vaccines and their side effects, talk with your healthcare provider to get the best medical advice for you.

How Can I Alleviate My Arm Pain

Swelling, redness and soreness are common after the flu shot and can last 24-48 hours. “If you always experience soreness or swelling after a flu vaccination, take an ibuprofen about 2 hours prior to vaccination,” suggests Dr. Mora. “You can also try icing the injection site to reduce redness and swelling and taking another dose of ibuprofen to ease any soreness or swelling.”

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The Why Behind A Side

According to an advisory released in January by the Society of Breast Imaging, roughly 11 per cent of people experience this side effect after their first shot of the Moderna vaccine, with around 16 per cent experiencing it after the second shot. Cases of this side effect were also reported among those who received the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, but the exact percentage is unknown.

As Canadas vaccine rollout moves along, this could mean thousands of Canadians experiencing an unexpected swelling of their lymph nodes.

We’ve definitely seen some additional people at the Ottawa Hospital who have had a reaction with swelling of the armpit that has been showing up on their screening mammogram and on screening MRIs as well, Seely said.

I dont think weve seen the full extent of it yet.

That the vaccine may trigger this swelling isnt a concern on its own. Lymph nodes are part of the bodys immune system, and help filter out bacteria and viruses.

It’s very likely the normal immune response of the body to the vaccination, Seely explained. The lymph nodes is where the immune responses tend to occur. So it’s actually a very good sign that things are working well with regards to the vaccination.

But radiologists are worried that if people arent warned of this side-effect, they could jump to assuming the worst. And if imaging specialists arent aware, it could lead to more complications.

We want to make sure that people avoid unnecessary biopsies, Seely said.

/6what Causes Pain At The Injection Site

Why does your arm hurt after the COVID

Side-effects with a vaccine can show up in a number of ways- mostly in the form of systematic and inflammatory reactions. With most people who do get vaccinated, pain in the arm where you get jabbed, or experiencing soreness, stiffness, difficulty in moving the arm around could be common reactions.

Even so, the numbness and the pain caused vis-a-vis injections could be temporary, the side-effects could throw people off their normal routines and be disturbing, it can be intriguing to wonder what causes it in the first place.

Pain and tenderness at the site of injection are actually one of the first side-effects that kick in when you get the vaccine jab. It also is part of the localized response when you get vaccinated, i.e. the effects which kick in at the exact spot where the jab is given.

The reaction that causes arm soreness is an example of how the body first perceives the vaccine to be. When you do get the shot, the body considers it to be an injury, much like a bleed or a cut and sends immune cells to the arm and relaxes the blood vessels. As a part of the process, the immune cells also cause inflammation, which later helps you protect against the same pathogen if you ever encounter it again. This is what experts call a ‘reactogenicity’ of the vaccine. Some of the arm irritation also comes from the muscle reacting to the small amount of vaccine liquid that was injected into the arm.

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How To Treat A Sore Arm After Vaccination

Although a sore arm after COVID shots is temporary, there are a few things you can do at home to help treat a sore arm after your vaccine:

  • Use a cold compress on the injection site
  • Move your arm around frequently throughout the day
  • Take over-the-counter pain medications, such as Advil and Tylenol if approved by your provider
  • Use antihistamines such as Benadryl if you experience itchiness

Unless you have a health condition that prevents you from taking certain OTC pain relievers, such as a bleeding condition or liver or kidney problems, you may find relief from arm soreness as well as certain other vaccine side effects such as headache or fatigue.

However, you want to avoid taking OTC pain medications before your vaccine in anticipation of side effects. While it may decrease your arm soreness, the local inflammation is beneficial to the development of a vigorous immune response and anti-inflammatory drugs may reduce this beneficial response, Dr. Anderson explains.

Health Officials Are Not Sold On The Widespread Need For Boosters Yet

The new CDC recommendations of who should get a Pfizer booster shot include people who:

  • are 65 or older
  • live in a long term care facility
  • are 50-64 years old with underlying medical conditions that put them at greater risk of severe COVID-19

The CDC is also suggesting that other adults who’ve had Pfizer, if they wish, may receive a third shot at least six months after their initial vaccination course if they:

  • are 1849 years old with underlying medical conditions
  • or are 1849 years old and are at increased risk of COVID-19 exposure and transmission “because of occupational or institutional setting”

The CDC stresses adults under the age of 50 should make their decision about a booster “based on their individual benefits and risks.”

Independent advisors to the CDC were torn about recommending booster shots to younger adults who are at higher risk of catching COVID-19 at work, like healthcare workers, frontline workers, and prison guards.

They said that giving out boosters isn’t going to end the pandemic. Getting more people vaccinated would help more.

The areas of the country that are hardest hit by the virus, with more hospitalizations and more deaths, are the places where large numbers of people remain without a single shot.

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Covid Vaccine: Sore Arm And Headache Most Common Side Effects

The most common side effects of the Covid-19 vaccines are pain or tenderness at the injection site – in other words, a sore arm – a UK study has suggested.

Roughly one in four people had wider effects like fever, headache, nausea and fatigue.

But these only lasted on average for one day.

Researchers involved in the ZOE Covid Symptom Study app saw fewer reactions than were seen in clinical trials.

Confidence in the vaccines has continued to grow since the end of last year, with more than 80% saying they believe the vaccines are safe and effective, compared with about 70% who said the same towards the end of 2020, according to a survey of 5,000 people.

The survey, run in association with the National Institute for Health Research, found twice as many people say they want to have the vaccine as soon as possible – although the number of people saying they would actively prefer the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine has fallen.

The ZOE study researchers looked at self-reported symptoms in 627,383 people using their app in the eight days after being vaccinated.

About 70% of people having the Pfizer jab had some reaction around where the needle went in, including pain, tenderness, redness or swelling, compared with just under 60% for the AstraZeneca jab.

The trend was reversed for those reactions that affect the whole body rather than just the site of the injection.

The most common of these side effects was a headache.

Possible Side Effects After Getting A Covid

Health Insider: Why your arm may hurt more after the second COVID-19 vaccine dose

COVID-19 vaccination will help protect you from getting COVID-19. You may have some side effects, which are normal signs that your body is building protection. These side effects may affect your ability to do daily activities, but they should go away in a few days. Some people have no side effects.

Serious side effects that could cause a long-term health problem are extremely unlikely following any vaccination, including COVID-19 vaccination. Vaccine monitoring has historically shown that side effects generally happen within six weeks of receiving a vaccine dose. For this reason, the FDA required each of the authorized COVID-19 vaccines to be studied for at least two months after the final dose.

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I Had A Stiff Neck After My Covid Shot And Asked Doctors If It Was Normal

I had a sore and stiff neck for the better part of two days after I received my first Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine . For transparency’s sake, as of this article’s publishing, I am one week away from my second dose. The other side effects I experienced were headache and tiredness, but it wasn’t anything I couldn’t handle with some rest, hydration, and Tylenol. I hadn’t heard of stiff neck specifically as a common COVID-19 vaccine side effect however, with a simple search on Twitter, I did find similar anecdotes from people who had gotten the vaccines, and after speaking with two experts in the field of allergy and immunology, I learned that this could very well be a normal response.

Swollen lymph nodes are a reported side effect of the COVID-19 vaccines . It’s an expected side effect of any vaccine and shows that your immune cells in your lymph nodes are working. The reaction also typically occurs on the same side of the body that the vaccine was administered, but Sofija Volertas, MD, an assistant professor in UNC’s division of rheumatology, allergy, and immunology, told POPSUGAR that the lymph node swelling could be on both sides of your body .

What To Expect At Your Vaccine Appointment

Dr. Abunasser was among the first group of doctors to receive the vaccine when it was made available to frontline workers. He says the process took less than 30 minutes. In his case, he received a notification to schedule an appointment. He did so and filled out a vaccine questionnaire that was similar to the one that you fill out before getting a flu shot. When he arrived for his COVID-19 vaccination, he signed in and got his shot.

The vaccine takes all of 20 seconds to administer. Once you get the shot, they give you a card that has the date and the type of vaccine that you received Pfizer, Moderna or Johnson & Johnson on it. Then, they use a timer to monitor you for at least 15 minutes afterward just in case you were to have that rare allergic reaction while youre there. So, its a fairly seamless process, says Dr. Abunasser.

Dr. Abunasser experienced the vaccination process from the healthcare provider side. Heres what your experience might be like.

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How To Reduce Side Effects Of The Covid Vaccine

Dr. Abunasser says that a sore arm is pretty common and the soreness comes from the needle, not the actual vaccine. The soreness should go away in about a day or so. As for side effects of the vaccine, he states that some people have experienced headaches, fatigue, muscle aches or low-grade fevers.

While these symptoms are obviously a nuisance to have, theyre actually good news because they indicate that your immune system is working. Theyre signs that your immune system is activated and is producing antibodies. Thats a good thing to know.

The CDC lists the following as common side effects of the COVID-19 vaccination:

On the arm where you got the shot:

  • Pain.

Throughout the rest of your body:

  • Fever.
  • Tiredness.
  • Headache.

For pain or discomfort, the CDC recommends asking your doctor about over-the-counter treatment options. Contact your doctor if:

  • The redness or tenderness where you got the shot increases after 24 hours.
  • Your side effects are worrying you or do not seem to be going away after a few days.

To reduce discomfort from fever, the CDC recommends:

  • Drinking plenty of fluids.

And to help with the pain or swelling in your arm from the injection:

  • Apply a clean, cool, wet washcloth over the area.
  • Use or exercise your arm.

For the most part, you can go about your day as you normally would after your COVID-19 vaccination. But if you start to feel the effects of it, theres nothing wrong with a little rest and self-care.

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Why one vaccine dose won

The most common side effects people are getting after the COVID-19 vaccine are soreness, redness or swelling in the arm at the spot you get the jab, headache, fatigue, muscular pain, fever, chills and nausea.

For some, these side effects are worse with the second shot, compared to the first one. But thats normal and you can feel good that your immunity is in place.

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Q: Why Does My Arm Hurt After Taking The Vaccine And Why Are Side Effects Worse After The Second Dose

A: Professor Ooi Eng Eong from the Duke-NUS Medical School said the commonly reported side effects of the mRNA Covid-19 vaccines are largely caused by the body’s immune response. These are pain at the injection site, tiredness, headache and body aches.

“For instance, the pain at the injection site is caused not only by the insertion of a hypodermic needle, but also by immune cells infiltrating the injection site to ‘pick up’ the vaccine,” he said.

“Moreover, activated immune cells would ‘talk’ to other immune cells to coordinate their response through chemicals, which causes the… side effects.”

This explains why more people experience side effects after the second dose than the first, as the first jab primes the immune system to the Sars-CoV-2 spike protein. So the immune response to the second dose is likely to be more robust than the first, said Prof Ooi.

Dr Tseng Hsien Cho, physician lead at Raffles Medical Group, said the immune system has two layers of response – the innate immune response followed by the adaptive immune response.

“The innate immune response is activated as soon as our body detects any foreign material, from a speck of dust to a virus. The goal is to identify and eliminate the foreign substance with specialised white blood cells known as neutrophils and macrophages,” he added.

This form of inflammatory response explains the aches and pains after receiving the first jab, said Dr Tseng, and this usually lasts for only a few hours or days.

Are Side Effects Worse After The Second Covid Vaccine

For many recipients, side effects are worse after the second dose, says Anderson. Local inflammation from the bodys inflammatory response leads to redness, warmth, swelling, and pain at the injection site.

When enough of these substances are released, muscle aches can occur and you begin to feel tired, Anderson explains, With the second dose, your immune system is really fired up and ready to immediately and forcefully respond to the vaccine components. However, he adds, this is a good sign your body is mounting a strong immune response. And if you dont have any side effects from the vaccine, it doesnt mean the vaccine didnt work or that you have a weak immune system. The protective immunity afforded by the vaccines takes longer to develop and isnt associated with these side effects, Anderson says.

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