VACCINE TEAM: Can I take pain relievers or allergy medicine after my COVID-19 vaccine?

When you can and should not take medicines
Updated: Apr. 19, 2021 at 4:38 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - As more people across the Carolinas are up for their second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, we’re answering your questions.

Robin reached out to the Vaccine Team before her second dose: Can I take pain relievers or allergy medicine after my COVID-19 vaccine?

Please read this carefully.

Yes, AFTER your shot, you can treat any aches with simple pain relievers, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

However, the CDC says you should not take pain relievers BEFORE your shot.

It is not recommended you take over-the-counter medicine – such as ibuprofen, aspirin, or acetaminophen – before vaccination for the purpose of trying to prevent vaccine-related side effects. It is not known how these medications might affect how well the vaccine works. However, if you take these medications regularly for other reasons, you should keep taking them before you get vaccinated. It is also not recommended to take antihistamines before getting a COVID-19 vaccine to try to prevent allergic reactions.

Some other ways to prevent feeling badly after your shot is to make sure you are well-rested, hydrated, and make sure you don’t have an empty stomach.

Other recommendations to help with soreness at the site of injection; put a cool cloth on the injection site, move your arm around after your shot.

If you have a question for the WBTV Vaccine Team, submit your question here.

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