COVID-19 Vaccines Facts
3 Types of COVID-19 Vaccines
It takes about 2 weeks after your final dose for your body to be fully protected against COVID-19 illness. COVID-19 vaccines protect people against severe illness, including disease caused by Delta and other variants circulating in the U.S.
- 2-Dose Pfizer-BioNTech (also known as Comirnaty). Review CDC's Comirnaty Overview and Safety
- 2-Dose Moderna. Review CDC's Moderna Overview and Safety
- 1-Dose Johnson & Johnson/Janssen. Review CDC's J&J Overview and Safety
COVID-19 Vaccines for Children
Pfizer's pediatric COVID-19 vaccine has been authorized for administration in children ages 5-11. CDC recommends that all children older than 5 years old get vaccinated to help protect against COVID-19.
- Vaccinating children can help protect family members, including siblings who are not eligible for vaccination and family members who may be at increased risk of getting very sick if they are infected.
- Vaccination can also help keep children from getting seriously sick even if they do get COVID-19.
- Vaccinating children ages 5 years and older can help keep them in school and help them safely participate in sports, playdates, and other group activities.
Learn more from CDC about the pediatric COVID-19 vaccine, including safety information.
Eligibility for Booster Doses
CDC advises people should receive a booster dose from a COVID-19 vaccine provider if they are age 12 and older and:
- it has been 5 months since their last dose of Pfizer or Moderna vaccine or
- it has been 2 months since they received a Johnson & Johnson vaccine
You can choose any vaccine as a booster dose. It does not have to be the same vaccine as your original. CDC’s recommendations now allow for this type of mix and match dosing for boosters. Teens ages 12 to 17 should only receive the Pfizer vaccine. Read the full CDC guidance.
Side effects usually start within a day or two and go away in a few days. It is normal to have side effects and is a sign of your immune system learning to fight the virus.
Common Side Effects
- Pain, redness, or swelling in the arm where you got the shot
- Tiredness, headache, muscle pain, chills, fever, or nausea throughout the rest of the body
If you have been infected with COVID-19, you should still get vaccinated. Immunity varies from person to person and you could still get the virus again. For example, studies show that some infected people with mild disease or no symptoms have low levels of antibodies. Unvaccinated people who get sick with COVID-19 then get vaccinated, have a strong response to vaccine and higher protection.
With the amount of COVID-19 in our communities, if you get infected with COVID-19, it is better to be vaccinated than unvaccinated.
Additional COVID-19 Vaccine Resources
- How was the vaccine able to get developed so quickly?
- If I have recovered from COVID-19 and completed my isolation period, do I still need to get vaccinated with a COVID-19 vaccine?
- Do I need to be a U.S. citizen to get the vaccine?
- Will the vaccines have any effect on fertility?
- How do I become a vaccine provider?