As more and more people become eligible for the Covid-19 vaccine, we wanted to let you know how plant-based medicine can support you during this time. Most people who have already received the vaccination have reported mild symptoms of fatigue, fever, headache, muscle soreness and/or nausea within 24-48 hours after receiving the shot. These symptoms are generally more common after the second dose.
Throughout the years, we often recommend our patients come in for acupuncture before and after any vaccination and have specific herbal supplements available to them to ready their system prior to the inoculation and other ones to take afterwards to mitigate the varied typical responses to vaccines.
Prior to an immunization, our aim is to balance and strengthen the system. If we see hyper- or hypo-functionality of the immune, respiratory or digestive system, we like to address these prior to a vaccination. In Chinese medicine terms, we are looking to strengthen areas that are deficient, or move and disperse any “stasis of qi, blood or body fluids....”
We also examine closely the climatic elements of hot and cold in the body. When cold predominates, the body may have difficulty warming up, keeping warm, preventing colds and flus, and/or processing food intake, to name a few symptoms. When heat predominates, the body may tend towards fever, overheating and sweating, infections, bleeding disorders, headaches, and/or rashes, etc. Our goal is to identify any of these tendencies and balance out the system so as to prevent any flaring of symptoms before receiving an inoculation. We can accomplish this with both acupuncture as well as plant based herbal remedies suited to your particular needs.
After a vaccination, the body may respond with common cold or flu-like symptoms of fatigue, fever, headache, nausea and/or soreness at the injection location. According to classical Chinese medicine, these symptoms appear at the Taiyang or Shaoyang levels of the body. Our goal as practitioners would be to be able to help the body strengthen its defences and push out the pathogen if at the Taiyang level. If the symptoms have moved slightly more interior and appear at the Shaoyang level, then we help to harmonize the body’s defences and internal environment. Again, acupuncture and custom herbal formulations can be helpful at this stage.
While there have been reports of allergic reactions to the vaccine, they are rare. If you have a history of allergic reactions of any kind, please check with your doctor before signing up for the vaccine.
If you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant, there is limited data regarding the safety of the vaccine, according to the NHS. Currently vaccine manufacturers are monitoring those in clinical trials who become pregnant but no studies that focus solely on this demographic are currently underway. If you are worried about the safety of the vaccine, please consult your GP to see if the vaccine is recommended.