Teens and the Vaccine

Teens and the Vaccine

Isabella Martinez, Staff Writer

Ever since the vaccines against COVID-19 were introduced to the world, many have had questions surrounding the effects and efficacy of these breakthrough shots. Although many have been answered, many are still left blank for one of the biggest age groups which can transmit the virus: teenagers. Even though these vaccines are approved for 12-18 year olds (and soon for 5-11 year olds), are they really safe?

At the moment, the only vaccine approved for teens is the Pfizer vaccine. Although this is the only vaccine available, the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) is reviewing information surrounding the Moderna vaccine, which is predicted to be approved soon. With the Pfizer vaccine, teens should expect to experience the normal after-effects of any vaccine: sore arm, light headache, body aches, etc. Some may even feel a fever or as if they had the mild flu, but with adequate rest, these symptoms, which demonstrate that your body is preparing to fight the virus if it were to ever encounter it, will subside. Also, these vaccines show no signs of long effects such as infertility or chronic fatigue. 

Though the vaccine has gone under strenuous tests and has shown no signs of dangerous effects to people, some who have received the vaccine have had severe reactions, but if treated urgently, have been cured. The risk of this occurring to a recipient is extremely rare. Scientists and doctors have advised people with severe allergic reactions or illnesses to refrain from obtaining the vaccine. It is important to note that after receiving your shot, you will be placed in an observing area for about 15-20 minutes to assure that you don’t have any alarming effects or reactions from the vaccine. 

Although the vaccines have extraordinarily high protection against being hospitalized with the virus, there have been breakthrough cases in which a vaccinated person has been admitted into a hospital or even died from complications of the virus. However, again, this occurring to a person is extremely rare as 97% of those hospitalized with the virus were unvaccinated. When a person receives both shots of the vaccine, they are protected from the virus and their chances of being admitted to a hospital and dying from complications are dropped significantly. Even though a person is fully vaccinated, this doesn’t eliminate the possibility of contracting the virus and their ability to spread it. 

The vaccines that promise to protect the human population from a deadly virus and end the suffering from such a historic pandemic are the only safe and quick way for this soon-to-be 2 year pandemic to come to an end. For teens, and adults alike, the vaccines are proven to be safe and help slow the spread of coronavirus significantly. It is vital to do research and properly inform ourselves and others on how to be safe in order for society to learn from this experience and transition into a sense of normality not hampered by a virus.