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Group of people after getting the covid-19 vaccine,

This colorful series of eight easy-to-read brochures provides information and answers questions about the COVID-19 vaccinations.


Trust the Science! COVID-19 Vaccination Brochures

NamePublication NumberEnglishSpanish
How Will You Feel after a COVID-19 Shot?FCS-2573PDFPDF
When You Need to Take a Time-OutFCS-2574PDFPDF
Should People with Cancer Get the COVID-19 Shot?FCS-2592PDFPDF
COVID-19 and DiabetesFCS-2595PDFPDF
Coping with Stress and COVID-19FCS-2596PDFPDF
Benefits of COVID-19 VaccineFCS-2597PDFPDF
Connections Between Smoking and COVID-19 FCS-2598PDFPDF
Managing Diabetes and COVID-19FCS-2619PDFPDF

How Will You Feel after a COVID-19 Shot?

  • The COVID-19 shot protects most people from getting very sick from COVID-19.
  • COVID-19 is a disease that makes people very sick.
  • To stay safe from getting COVID-19, you need to get a shot or two in your arm.
  • The shot is free. Call your pharmacy to see if they have the shot.
  • After the COVID-19 shot, some people might be a little sick for a few days.
  • Common Side Effects

On the arm where you got the shot, you may have the following:

  • Pain
  • Redness
  • Swelling

In your body, you may feel the following:

  • Tired
  • Headache
  • Muscle pain
  • Chills
  • Fever
  • Upset stomach

Tips to help you feel better after a COVID-19 shot

After a COVID-19 shot, some people may not feel very well. But the pain from the shot only lasts a day or two.

To help with the pain where you got the shot:

  • Use a clean, cool, wet towel on the area.
  • Move your arm.

To help with fever, you need to do the following:

  • Drink lots of fluids.
  • Dress lightly.
  • Follow what your doctor tells you to do.

When to Call the Doctor

Call your doctor:

  • If the pain where you got the shot gets worse after 24 hours. Keep in mind that your arm where you got the shot will hurt for a few days.
  • If the common side effects do not seem to be going away after a few days.

If you have an allergic reaction to the COVID-19 shot after leaving the vaccine site, call your doctor or 911.

When You Need to Take a Time-Out

What do you do if you test positive for COVID-19?

  • If you test positive for COVID-19, you need to self-isolate at home.
  • This means you need to take a time-out and have no contact with anyone.
  • Ask your doctor how long you need to be in time-out.
  • Below are tips to help you take a time-out and stop spreading your germs.
  • This will keep others safe.

It can be very hard to stay home and not be around others.

  • Find one room in your home just for you.
  • After about 5 days, you will want to give up and leave your room.
  • But stay isolated.
  • Stay in time-out.
  • This keeps loved ones in your home safe.
  • Wash your hands many times a day with soap.
  • While you wash your hands, slowly count to 20.
  • Only use your towel to dry your hands. Do not share a towel. This helps prevent sharing your germs.

If you must be around people while in time-out, here are more tips.

  • Wear your mask.
  • Stay 6 feet apart from others.
  • Do not sit or sleep near others.
  • Eat by yourself.
  • Watch TV by yourself.
  • Wash your hands many times a day.
  • If you share a bathroom with others, clean the sink, handles, and doorknobs when done. This helps prevent sharing your germs.
  • Do not share your phone with others.
  • Do not use other people’s phones.
  • Be sure to clean any shared items, such as a TV remote or fridge handle, with a disinfectant cleaner after using them.

How do you get food?

  • See if a grocery store nearby delivers food to your house.
  • Call friends or family to pick up and drop off food for you.
  • Reach out to your church and others for help.
  • Since you are in time-out, make sure you get foods you enjoy.

How do you get medicine?

  • See if your pharmacy delivers.
  • Check with friends and family for medicine pickup and drop-off.

How do you keep yourself busy in time-out?

  • Sleep.
  • Drink lots of water.
  • Watch TV.
  • Read a book.
  • Put together a jigsaw puzzle.
  • Soak in the tub.
  • Do yoga.
  • Teach yourself new skills by using the Internet:
    • Cooking
    • Sewing
    • Birds, plants, or wildlife in your area
    • Woodwork
  • Spend time making goals.
  • Play games on apps to stay in touch with others.

Should you go to a religious service during time-out?

  • No, you should not go anywhere.

Should I be in a car with others?

  • No.

A time-out is hard.

But it is worth it to keep others safe.

Should People with Cancer Get the COVID-19 Shot?

  • Most adults with health problems, such as cancer, can get a COVID-19 shot.
  • Having cancer may increase your risk of getting COVID-19.
  • Cancer makes you more likely to get very sick from COVID-19.
  • If you have had any cancer treatment, talk to your doctor before you get a COVID-19 shot.

Can you get a COVID-19 shot during cancer treatments?

  • If you have had any cancer treatment, talk to your doctor before you get the COVID-19 shot.
  • But, most people with cancer . can get the COVID-19 shot.

Is one COVID-19 vaccine better than the other for people with cancer?

  • People with cancer should take whichever COVID-19 vaccine they can get.
  • The key is to get the shot if you can.
  • But first, talk to your doctor.

Other Ways to Protect Yourself

  1. Wear a mask that covers your nose and mouth.
  2. Stay 6 feet away from people.
  3. Stay away from crowds.
  4. Wash your hands a lot with soap and water.
  5. Use hand sanitizer if there is no soap and water.
  6. Cover your coughs and sneezes.
  7. Every day, clean things you touch, such as countertops and door handles.

When to Call the Doctor Call your doctor:

  • If the pain where you got the shot gets worse after 24 hours. Keep in mind that your arm where you got the shot will hurt for a few days.
  • If the common side effects do not seem to be going away after a few days.

If you have an allergic reaction to the COVID-19 shot after leaving the vaccine site, call your doctor or 911.

COVID-19 and Diabetes

What is COVID-19?

  • COVID-19 is a virus that makes it very hard for a person to breathe.
  • COVID-19 can be passed from person to person.

Will I get Covid-19 because I have diabetes?

  • No, not all people with diabetes will get COVID-19.
  • Because people with diabetes already have a weak body system, you can get COVID-19 easier than people without diabetes.
  • People with diabetes can get very sick from COVID-19.

If you have diabetes, closely follow your diabetes care plan for better blood sugar control. This is good advice to use every day.

How can I protect myself?

Follow these tips to stay healthy and safe:

  • Do not get too close to people who are sick.
  • Do not touch your eyes, nose, and mouth with your hands.
  • Do not stand too close to people who are not in your household. Stay 6 feet apart.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a mask when around others.
  • Clean surfaces you use every day.
  • Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Wash hands before and after checking blood sugar.

How can I prepare in case I get sick?

For people with diabetes, make sure you have supplies to manage your diabetes:

  • Blood sugar testing supplies.
  • Ketone testing supplies in case of high blood sugar.
  • Fast-acting carbs to treat low blood sugar (glucose tabs, juice, hard candies).
  • Severe low blood sugar emergency kit (glucagon).
  • Extra medicine in case of emergency. If you get sick, ask family or friends to pick up your medicine.
  • If using a continuous glucose monitor (CGM), have sensors, a backup meter, and testing supplies.
  • If using an insulin pump, talk to your doctor about a backup plan.

If you have diabetes, closely follow your diabetes care plan for better blood sugar control. This is good advice to use every day.

Coping with Stress and COVID-19

COVID-19 has changed us.

  • To stop the spread of COVID-19, we have stopped seeing as many people.
  • This can make us feel sad and cause more stress.
  • You can learn good ways to cope with stress.

Stress can cause

  • Fear, anger, sadness, worry, and lack of feelings
  • Changes in energy and eating
  • Changes in thinking
  • Changes in sleeping
  • Body pains, headaches, stomach problems, and skin rashes
  • Drug or alcohol use

It is common to feel stress during this time of COVID-19.

Good Ways to Cope with Stress

  • Turn off the phone, TV, and computer for a while.
  • Take breaks from news stories.
  • Take breaks from social media.
  • Take care of your body.
  • Take deep breaths.
  • Relax.
  • Try to eat better.
  • Work out daily.
  • Get lots of sleep.
  • Avoid too much substance use.
  • Go to the doctor on time.
  • Do things you enjoy.

Talk with people you trust.

Help Others Cope

  • You can take care of others when you take better care of yourself.
  • During COVID-19, stay in touch with friends and family.
  • You will feel better about yourself by helping others.

Get the COVID-19 shot, so we can all get back together again.

Benefits of COVID-19 Vaccine

COVID-19 vaccines are safe.

  • COVID-19 vaccines were made using science that has been around for many years.
  • COVID-19 shots are not a trial vaccine.
  • They have been tested to make sure they work and are safe.

COVID-19 Vaccines Work

  • COVID-19 vaccines do their job.
  • COVID-19 vaccines help keep you from getting very sick even if you get COVID-19.
  • Getting the COVID-19 vaccine will help protect the people around you.

After You Are Fully Vaccinated

  • You are not fully safe until 2 weeks after a 2-dose series or 2 weeks after a single-dose vaccine.
  • After these 2 weeks, you can start doing some of the things you did before COVID-19.
  • Make sure to look for any new changes about COVID-19 to keep yourself safe.

The COVID-19 Vaccine Is the Best Way to Protect Yourself

  • You should still get vaccinated even if you have had COVID-19.
  • After you had COVID-19, you need to wait a while before getting the COVID-19 shot.
  • Your doctor will tell you how long to wait before getting the COVID-19 shot.
  • Vaccines are the best way to protect yourself from COVID-19.

Connections Between Smoking and COVID-19

Connections Between Smoking and COVID-19

  • It is a known fact that smoking is bad for your health.
  • Smoking makes it harder for the body to fight off illnesses.
  • Smoking or vaping damages your lungs.
  • Compared to nonsmokers, people who smoke are more likely to get sicker if they have COVID-19.
  • COVID-19 attacks the lungs.
  • Your fingers touch your lips when you smoke or vape, which can increase your chances of getting COVID-19.

As a smoker, you may need to be hospitalized if you get COVID-19.

  • Feel shortness of breath
  • Feel tiredness
  • Have severe cough
  • Require oxygen

How do you lower your risk of getting COVID-19?

  • Follow public health guidelines.
  • Quit smoking and vaping.
  • Avoid secondhand smoke.
  • Talk to your doctor about ways to quit.
  • Always wear your mask.
  • Stay away from others that may have COVID-19.
  • Clean areas in your home that are used a lot.
  • Wash your hands many times a day.
  • While you wash your hands, slowly count to 20.
  • Do not share your towel with others.

If You Cannot Quit Smoking Yet

  • Do not smoke in a group or near others.
  • Wash your hands many times a day.
  • Do not share cigarettes or vapes.

If You Feel Sick

  • Call your doctor as soon as you can.
  • Get tested.
  • Self-isolate until you get your test back.
  • Stop smoking cigarettes, vapes, e-cigs, and hookahs.
  • Stay 6 feet away from others.
  • Avoid secondhand smoke.
  • Wash hands often.

How to quit smoking?

  • Contact your doctor for help.
  • Call (800) QUIT-NOW for help.
  • Do not use vapes or e-cigs to quit smoking. They do not help you quit smoking.

Managing Diabetes and COVID-19

According to the American Diabetes Association, people with diabetes have the same risk of getting COVID-19 as people without diabetes. But people with diabetes may become sicker if they get COVID-19. The more health conditions a person has (such as diabetes plus heart disease), the greater their risk of getting sicker from COVID-19.

If You Get Sick, Know What to Do

Call your doctor if you feel any of these COVID-19 symptoms:

  • Fever or chills
  • Cough
  • Tiredness
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Headache
  • Sore throat
  • Stuffy or runny nose
  • Diarrhea
  • Upset stomach
  • Trouble breathing
  • Pain or pressure in your chest that will not go away
  • Confusion
  • Not able to wake or stay awake
  • Blue lips or face

If you get sick and have diabetes, follow these tips, which may work differently for each person.

  • Drink lots of water. If you cannot keep water down, take small sips or ice chips every 15 minutes during the day. This will help keep a healthy level of water in your body.
  • If your blood sugar level is below 70 or below the target range, do the following:
    • Eat simple sugars, such as honey, jam, gelatin dessert, hard candy, ice pops, juice, or regular soda.
    • Recheck your blood sugar in 15 minutes to make sure your levels are going up.
    • Check your blood sugar every 2 to 3 hours during the day and night.
  • Talk with your doctor if you have the following symptoms:
    • Are always thirsty
    • Need to use the bathroom a lot
    • Feel weak
    • Are short of breath or have fruity breath
    • Feel confused
  • If your blood sugar is greater than 240, call your doctor for your next steps.
  • If you take Tylenol, it may change your reading on your continuous glucose monitor (CGM). Check your user manual. You may need to check your blood sugar with finger sticks to make sure you are getting the right reading.
  • Wash your hands and clean your shot and finger-stick sites with soap and water or rubbing alcohol.

For more information, visit: www.alabamaready.info


Get the Shot


Peer ReviewBarb Struempler, Associate Dean, Assistant Director, Human Sciences Extension; Amy Sorter, Executive Support Assistant, Human Sciences Extension; Matt Ulmer, Extension Specialist, Community Workforce, Leadership, and Economic Development; Helen Jones, Sheree Taylor, Elaine Softley, Marilyn Agee, Hope Pettway-Thomas, Tera Glenn, Synithia Flowers, and Shonda Miller, Regional Extension Agents, College of Human Sciences Extension, all with Auburn University


New October 2021, How Will You Feel after a COVID-19 Shot?, FCS-2573

New October 2021, When You Need to Take a Time-Out, FCS-2574

New October 2021, Should People with Cancer Get the COVID-19 Shot?, FCS-2592

New October 2021, COVID-19 and Diabetes, FCS-2595

New October 2021, Coping with Stress and COVID-19, FCS-2596

New October 2021, Benefits of COVID-19 Vaccine, FCS-2597

New October 2021, Connections Between Smoking and COVID-19, FCS-2598

New October 2021, Managing Diabetes and COVID-19, FCS-2619

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