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Here’s everything you need to know about the Covid booster side effects

2 min read

Experts believe that boosters may be the best chance we have to slow the spread of the Omicron strain of the coronavirus as the mutant variant is thought to evade immunity from two doses of the vaccine.

More than 900,000 Britons received a jab, as of Saturday, December 18, according to Health Secretary Sajid Javid.

However, many of those who have gotten their jab have reported experiencing some uncomfortable side effects, including feeling ‘wiped out’ after getting their dose.

Much like the first two doses of the vaccine, the boosters train our immune system to fight against any potential coronavirus infection. Yet, many have noticed that side effects with this third dose are much more noticeable than previous doses.

What are the side effects of the booster jabs?

The potential side effects of the booster have been split into two groups by the NHS. The most common side effects include :

  • A sore arm at the site of infection

  • Tiredness

  • A headache

  • Aches and pains

  • Feeling sick or vomiting

  • High temperature

  • Shivers

However, sometimes, some people may experience rare and more complex side effects including allergic reactions, blood clots and heart inflammation (myocarditis).

  • Mysterious symptom of new Omicron variant only appears at night, doctors report

These can be a bit more serious with allergic reactions causing anaphylaxis and swelling of the heart, which results in chest pains or palpitations.

There have also been some instances of blood clots that result in a pulmonary embolism (if the clot gets to the lungs) or a stroke (if it ends up in the brain).

The symptoms of a pulmonary embolism include:

  • Sweating

  • Sudden loss of breath

  • Chest pain

  • Anxiety

  • Dizziness, fainting or light-headedness

  • Irregular heartbeat

  • Palpitations

  • Coughing, sometimes with blood

Stroke symptoms include:

  • Paralysis

  • One-sided facial, arm or leg paralysis

  • Trouble speaking or understanding people

  • Slurring speech

  • Disorientation, confusion, or unresponsiveness

  • Sudden behavioural changes

You should also be asked about any allergies you have by the healthcare professional giving you the jab before you actually receive the dose.

When should I be worried about the booster side effects?

It can be hard to predict what exact side effects you will experience from the booster, and it can vary from person to person.

But most side effects from a vaccine should be “mild” and shouldn't last longer than a week, according to the NHS.

The NHS adds that sometimes you may experience a high temperature for a day or two after your jab, but paracetamol should be able to help you reduce your fever.

There's also not much you can do about the side effects except take pain relievers and avoid any strenuous activity for a couple of days after getting your jab.

If your symptoms worsen or you’re still feeling unwell after several days, it’s best to ring 119 or consult your GP to arrange for a PCR test.

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