COVID-19 Vaccine Myths vs. Facts
Fact: You cannot get COVID-19 from the vaccine. The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines do not contain any live or dead virus in it.
Fact: Due to the severe health risks associated with COVID-19 and the fact that re-infection with COVID-19 is possible, people may be advised to get a COVID-19 vaccine even if they have been sick with COVID-19 before. At this time, experts do not know how long someone is protected from COVID-19 after being sick. The immunity someone gains from having an infection, called natural immunity, varies from person to person. Some early evidence suggests natural immunity may not last very long. GW Infectious Disease clinicians are estimating that natural immunity may last only four months.
Fact: mRNA vaccines have been studied for five years so while the technology is still relatively new, it was not invented for this pandemic. In addition, the vaccines have undergone large clinical trials and have been vetted by multiple regulatory and government agencies that have shown these to be both safe and highly effective.
Fact: The most common side effects from this vaccine have included fatigue, muscle pains, joint pains, headaches, pain and redness at the injection site. These symptoms were more common after the second dose of the vaccine and the majority of side effects were mild.
Fact: mRNA stands for messenger ribonucleic acid and can most easily be described as instructions for how to make a protein or even just a piece of a protein. mRNA is not able to alter or modify a person’s genetic makeup (DNA). The mRNA from a COVID-19 vaccine never enter the nucleus of the cell, which is where our DNA are kept. This means the mRNA does not affect or interact with our DNA in any way. Instead, COVID-19 vaccines that use mRNA work with the body’s natural defenses to safely develop protection (immunity) to disease.
Fact: Getting a flu shot will not protect you against coronavirus. These are two different vaccinations.
Fact: Any substance, even water, can be toxic in large doses. The gelatin and egg proteins in some flu vaccines can cause allergic reactions in very rare cases. Those affected typically have a history of severe allergies to gelatin or eggs. If you have severe allergies, tell the nurse before your vaccine or talk to your doctor.
Fact: Vaccines allow you to build immunity without the damaging effects that vaccine-preventable diseases can have. These diseases can cause serious health problems and even be life-threatening. These effects can be avoided by simply getting vaccinated.
Fact: Vaccines do not cause autism. This incorrect claim stems from a study that has been discredited. Unfortunately, this flawed study has created much misinformation.
Fact: This is entirely false and is not possible. This is a myth that stemmed from misinformation on the internet.