Complacency is something that cannot be entertained as far as the deadly virus, COVID-19 is concerned. Over the last two and a half years it has claimed innumerable lives both in the US and
the rest of the world. The only way to get a measure of protection against COVID-19 is if you stay up to date with the vaccinations that are approved and recommended by the government.
After the first two inoculations, your defenses had been shored up against the COVID-19 virus. But the thing about vaccines is that their efficacy reduces over time. It is for this reason that the second booster dose has been recommended by the CDC (Center for Disease Control) for young and old alike.
Some Little Known Facts About The Second Booster Dose For COVID-19
- The COVID booster shot is the additional dose of the original vaccine that is given to the people after the protection provided by the first two shots begins to wane because of different factors. This second booster dose will help people to keep up robust defenses against COVID-19.
- The authorized and approved vaccines in the case of COVID -19 are robust, but over a period of time, they weaken. This time period is different for different vaccines. For the Johnson& Johnson vaccine, it is 2 months and for the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines, it is about 5 months. If you get a booster shot according to the initial vaccine, it will extend your protection against COVID, for both the Omicron and Delta variants. Studies have confirmed this fact.
- In most cases, after receiving the second booster shot, there will be some temporary side effects. These symptoms are akin to flu and include swollen and sore arms, fever, headaches, and body aches as well as tiredness. It has also been observed that swelling of lymph nodes and chills may be present. These symptoms are a signal that your immune system is reacting to the second booster shot and building up protection against COVID-19.
- If a person has a moderate/severely compromised immune system, he/she is eligible for an additional vaccine dose so that their response to the initial vaccines is improved significantly.
Should I Stick To The Same Brand For Second Booster Dose Or Can I Change Brands
As of now, booster shots have been fully approved for all three COVID-19 vaccines from Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson&Johnson. Also, the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) guidelines have said that those people who are vaccinated fully against coronavirus can match and mix their shots when it comes to the question of getting the second booster shot.
Keeping this in context, it means that getting the second booster shot (which is a supplementary vaccine dose) to shore up your body’s defense against coronavirus can be taken from a different manufacturer as compared to the first one you chose for the original vaccine dose. This is irrespective of what manufacturer you chose for your first shots.
However, if anyone is just getting their initial dose, then CDC guidelines have to be followed where it states that for initial vaccination, either the Jannsen single-shot dose from Johnson&Johnson or both the doses from a 2 dose mRNA regimen from the same manufacturer, which in this case is Moderna or Pfizer for residents of USA.
You may question the need for a second booster dose because you have been fully vaccinated. Being fully vaccinated offers you maximum protection for a while, but over a period of time, this protection wanes. The human body is efficient by nature and they have to be able to respond to many types of infections. This is why, by nature, the body does not want to waste its resources for maintenance of maximum security forever against the COVID pathogen that it may/may not encounter in the future.
However, the amount of antibodies for COVID neutralization drops significantly in individuals after a period of eight months. This increases the odds of breakthrough infections. Hence, this decreased protection is the reason for getting your second booster shot. As long as you have the Omicron and Delta variants, highly contagious strains of COVID, hanging around, it is a prudent decision to keep up the highest defenses possible and your second booster shot is exactly what the doctor orders.
How Long Does The Second Booster Last And Do I Time It For Fall Vaccines?
When the Omicron wave was raging, data collected and published by the CDC revealed that after two months of the second booster shot from Pfizer or Moderna, the effectiveness of the vaccine against severe hospitalization was 90%. After four months, the efficacy dwindled to 80% which according to doctors was a good percentage. It was a lot higher than the level of protection offered by 2 doses of mRNA vaccine, which dwindled to 54% after roughly 5 months post-vaccination.
Doctors are of the opinion that the second booster might not be needed immediately for people who are all appearances healthy. Some predict that the second booster will be inevitable for the fall season which is when a lot of people go to the pharmacy or to their doctor’s for their annual shots for flu and other infectious diseases. As far as current research goes, it is fine if you take your second booster dose in the fall season, corresponding to the fall vaccines.
However, even where the second booster dose is recommended, it does not necessarily mean that people will have to go back every few months for booster shots as an annual booster dose seems to be highly probable for the future as scientists and researchers bend their backs to get more information into the workings of the COVID virus.
Meanwhile, if you have not received the second booster and you are eligible for it, do make sure that you get the jab. It will give you the maximum chance for protection against severe illnesses from infection by the Delta or Omicron variants. And better still it will offer protection to you against other COVID variants in the future.