Monday Myths’ is a new segment on Missy.ie, where we state facts about certain topics, and you decide if you believe them to be true or false. We’ll then let you know whether it’s true or not.
In a time of disinformation and Fake News there’s probably nothing more in recent times subjected to myths than the COVID-19 vaccine.
As someone who’s just had their second dose (sadly my 5G is no better) I thought I’d take over from Roisin to talk about some COVID vaccine myths.
The Vaccine Will Affect My Period
While there have been some talk that the vaccine affects your period online there hasn’t been a proven link. And although it’s always a good idea to monitor your period and track your cycle, a temporary change to your cycle is normal. Also, post-vaccination people are more likely to notice or attribute changes, particularly after hearing about others’ experiences.
But also, a change your your period would kinda make sense. The womb lining is part of the immune system – in fact there are immune cells in almost every part of the body. Immune cells play a role in building up, maintaining and breaking down the lining of the uterus – which thickens to prepare for a pregnancy, and then sheds in the form of a period if the egg is not fertilised.
After vaccination, lots of chemical signals which have the potential to affect immune cells are circulating round the body. This could cause the womb lining to shed, and lead to spotting or earlier periods. There is evidence from both the flu and HPV vaccines that they can affect the menstrual cycle temporarily – but there are no long-term side effects.
Everyone reacts to the vaccine differently. For the vast majority of people the COVID vaccine will not cause them to miss periods, have heavier periods or an early period.
Just to say, I have PCOS and as of last week I have had both my COVID vaccines. My period cycle is usually 46 days, which can change sometimes and be longer or shorter. I had both of my vaccines during my last cycle and my period arrived today exactly on time.
I still need to get the vaccine even though I’m young and don’t have underlying issues
Although COVID has disproportionately affected older and vulnerable people the fact is anyone of any age can catch COVID and any of us can become seriously sick with it. More and more young people are getting sick with COVID and worryingly are continuing to suffer the affects of Long COVID.
To reduce to risk of serious illness and hospitalisation from COVID it is recommended that people all of ages should get the vaccine.
The vaccine will affect my fertility
Although the idea of thinking about children might be way off in your distant future, hearing people claim that your fertility may be affected by the vaccine can seem alarming, but this claim is not true.
According to John Hopkins Medicine the COVID-19 vaccine will not affect fertility.”Confusion arose when a false report surfaced on social media, saying that the spike protein on this coronavirus was the same as another spike protein called syncitin-1 that is involved in the growth and attachment of the placenta during pregnancy. The false report said that getting the COVID-19 vaccine would cause a woman’s body to fight this different spike protein and affect her fertility. The two spike proteins are completely different and distinct, and getting the COVID-19 vaccine will not affect fertility”.
You can still get COVID-19 even after getting the vaccine
There is a small chance you might still get COVID-19 after vaccination. Even if you do get COVID-19, being vaccinated can reduce how serious your symptoms will be.
Even after you are vaccinated, continue to follow public health advice on how to stop the spread of COVID-19. For example, social distancing, wearing a face covering and washing your hands properly and often.
The HSE, Department of Health and the World Health Organization recommends that you get your COVID-19 vaccine when it is offered to you.
There are some other mad vaccine myths out there such as magnets sticking to the place where you got your vaccine (I tried to stick a magnet to my arm, but would you be shocked to find out that it did not work?) and that the vaccine “sheds” and affects people around you (also not true and scientifically impossible) but honestly they are ridiculous.
Remember it is ok to question things and you should definitely take the time to educate yourself about the COVID vaccine before deciding to take it, but do so from a reputable site or chat to your GP if you have concerns.
You can read more about COVID vaccine myths here.