Coronavirus condition 2019 (COVID-19) vaccines are now obtainable to young children ages five and up in the U.S. This is what mother and father and youngsters want to know about the basic safety and performance of the vaccine, the probable aspect effects, and the gains of receiving vaccinated.

If young children do not regularly practical experience intense sickness with COVID-19, why do they want a COVID-19 vaccine?

A COVID-19 vaccine can prevent your youngster from receiving and spreading the virus that brings about COVID-19.

If your youngster gets COVID-19, a COVID-19 vaccine could prevent him or her from becoming seriously ill or enduring brief-term or extensive-term troubles. Little ones with other health and fitness circumstances, this kind of as being overweight, diabetes and asthma, could possibly be at larger hazard of significant sickness with COVID-19.

Finding a COVID-19 vaccine can also assist preserve your youngster in faculty and more safely and securely have playdates and take part in athletics and other group functions.

What COVID-19 vaccines have been permitted for youngsters in the U.S.?

In the U.S., COVID-19 vaccines are obtainable to young children by age group:

  • Ages five by means of 11. The U.S. Foodstuff and Drug Administration (Fda) has supplied unexpected emergency use authorization to a Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for this age group. This vaccine entails two injections, supplied a few weeks apart. It incorporates a decrease dose than the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine applied for people age twelve and older. Investigation exhibits that this vaccine is about 91% helpful in avoiding COVID-19 in young children ages five by means of 11.
  • Ages twelve by means of fifteen. The Fda has supplied unexpected emergency use authorization to a Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for this age group. This vaccine entails two injections, supplied a few weeks apart. It incorporates the identical dose as the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for people ages 16 and older. The second dose can be supplied up to six weeks after the initially dose, if needed. Investigation has demonstrated that this vaccine is a hundred% helpful in avoiding COVID-19 in young children ages twelve by means of fifteen.
  • Ages 16 and older. The Fda has permitted a Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine, now referred to as Comirnaty, for this age group. This vaccine entails two injections, supplied a few weeks apart. The second dose can be supplied up to six weeks after the initially dose, if needed. This vaccine is 91% helpful in avoiding intense sickness with COVID-19 in people age 16 and older. Early study also implies that the vaccine is 96% helpful at avoiding intense condition with COVID-19 brought on by the delta variant, the most common COVID-19 variant in the U.S correct now.

How did the Fda establish the basic safety and performance of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccines for use in youngsters?

For youngsters ages five by means of 11, the Fda reviewed a vaccine analyze of more than 4,600 young children in this age variety. Of this group, about 3,a hundred were being supplied the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine. The other young children were being supplied an inactive (placebo) shot. Little ones who were being supplied the vaccine were being monitored for aspect effects for at the very least 2 months after the second dose. Side effects were being typically gentle to moderate.

The Fda also took an early look at circumstances of COVID-19 that happened a single week after young children were being supplied a second dose of the vaccine. None of the young children in this assessment had been beforehand diagnosed with COVID-19. Amid 1,305 young children supplied the vaccine, there were being 3 circumstances of COVID-19. Amid 663 young children supplied the placebo, there were being 16 circumstances of COVID-19. The results counsel that the vaccine is about 91% helpful in avoiding COVID-19 in this age group.

For youngsters ages twelve by means of fifteen, the Fda reviewed a vaccine analyze of more than 2,200 U.S. young children in this age variety. Of this group, about half were being supplied the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine. The other young children were being supplied a placebo shot.

A week after the second dose was supplied, there were being no circumstances of COVID-19 in the 1,005 young children supplied the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine. Amid 978 young children supplied the placebo, there were being 16 circumstances of COVID-19. None of the young children had beforehand been diagnosed with COVID-19. The results counsel that the vaccine is a hundred% helpful at avoiding COVID-19 in this age group.

What are the aspect effects of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccines for youngsters?

Little ones supplied the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccines had aspect effects related to individuals seasoned by people age 16 and older. The most generally reported aspect effects involve:

  • Suffering where by the shot was supplied
  • Tiredness
  • Headache
  • Chills
  • Muscle agony
  • Fever
  • Joint agony
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • Nausea
  • Reduced appetite

Related to grownups, young children have aspect effects inside 2 times after vaccination that generally very last 1 to 3 times. Additional young children reported these aspect effects, besides for injection internet site agony, after the second dose of the vaccine. Nonetheless, some people have no aspect effects.

Soon after your youngster is supplied a COVID-19 vaccine, he or she will be monitored for fifteen to thirty minutes to see if he or she has an allergic response that necessitates therapy.

It is just not suggested that you give your youngster an over-the-counter agony reliever just before vaccination to prevent aspect effects. It is really Alright to give this form of medication after your youngster gets a COVID-19 vaccine.

Can COVID-19 vaccines affect the heart?

In the U.S., there has been an increase in reported circumstances of myocarditis and pericarditis after mRNA COVID-19 vaccination, notably in males ages twelve by means of seventeen. Myocarditis is the irritation of the heart muscle, when pericarditis is the irritation of the lining outside the house the heart. These experiences are scarce. One analyze implies that the hazard of myocarditis in the week after becoming totally vaccinated with the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine is about 54 circumstances for every million doses supplied to males ages twelve to seventeen.

Of the circumstances reported, the issue happened more frequently after the second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine and generally inside various times after COVID-19 vaccination. Most of the people who obtained treatment rapidly felt far better after getting medicine and resting. Signs to look at for involve:

  • Upper body agony
  • Shortness of breath
  • Inner thoughts of getting a quick-beating, fluttering or pounding heart

If you or your youngster has any of these indicators inside a week of receiving a COVID-19 vaccine, request health-related treatment.

Is there any study on the extensive-term effects of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccines?

Because COVID-19 vaccine medical trials only commenced in the summer months of 2020, it’s not nonetheless crystal clear if the vaccines will have extensive-term effects. Nonetheless, vaccines almost never trigger extensive-term effects.

A part of the young children in each age group were being monitored for basic safety for at the very least two months after becoming supplied the second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

As part of its initially ask for for unexpected emergency use authorization of its COVID-19 vaccine in 2020, Pfizer Inc. made a basic safety monitoring system. The system now features the monitoring of young children and adolescents supplied the COVID-19 vaccine.

In addition, in the U.S. all vaccination vendors are essential to report significant adverse situations, this kind of as allergic reactions, to a nationwide software referred to as the Vaccine Adverse Celebration Reporting Program.

How do the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccines perform?

The Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccines use messenger RNA (mRNA). Researchers have been researching mRNA vaccines for many years.

Coronaviruses have a spikelike construction on their area referred to as an S protein. COVID-19 mRNA vaccines give guidance to immune cells for how to make a harmless piece of an S protein. Soon after vaccination, cells commence producing the protein parts and exhibiting them on cell surfaces. The immune technique acknowledges the protein and begins creating an immune response and producing antibodies. Soon after providing guidance, the mRNA is straight away broken down. It hardly ever enters the nucleus of the cell, where by DNA is retained.

Is there any big difference in the ingredients or dosing of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccines for more youthful young children, older young children or grownups?

The Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for young children ages five by means of 11 incorporates a decrease dose (ten micrograms) than the vaccine applied for older young children and grownups (thirty micrograms). Smaller needles are becoming applied to provide the vaccine to young children ages five by means of 11.

The Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for young children ages five by means of 11 also incorporates a distinct buffer than the vaccine applied for older young children and grownups. This distinct buffer, which is applied in other
Fda-permitted vaccines, will assist preserve the vaccine secure in refrigerated temperatures for more time.

The ingredients and dosing of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine are the identical for young children ages twelve by means of fifteen and people age 16 and older.

Are there any young children who shouldn’t get the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine?

This vaccine is not nonetheless obtainable to young children more youthful than age five. Medical trials involving more youthful young children are in development.

The vaccine also should not be supplied to a youngster with a known history of a intense allergic response to any of its ingredients. If this is the case, your youngster could possibly be in a position to get another COVID-19 vaccine in the potential.

Can a COVID-19 vaccine give a youngster COVID-19?

No. The COVID-19 vaccines currently becoming developed in the U.S. do not use the dwell virus that brings about COVID-19.

Can a COVID-19 vaccine affect fertility or menstruation?

There is no proof that any COVID-19 vaccines trigger fertility problems.

A compact range of girls have reported enduring momentary menstrual changes after receiving a COVID-19 vaccine. A compact analyze has also demonstrated that some girls seasoned momentary menstrual changes after receiving COVID-19. It is not crystal clear if receiving COVID-19 or a COVID-19 vaccine brings about these changes. Even more study is needed.

Preserve in thoughts that quite a few items can affect menstrual cycles, like bacterial infections, worry, rest problems and changes in eating plan or exercise.

Can young children who get COVID-19 practical experience extensive-term effects?

Any individual who has had COVID-19 can acquire a put up-COVID-19 problem. Investigation implies that young children with both gentle and intense COVID-19 have seasoned extensive-term indicators. The most common indicators in young children involve:

  • Tiredness or tiredness
  • Headache
  • Issues sleeping
  • Issues concentrating
  • Muscle and joint agony
  • Cough

These indicators could affect your child’s potential to show up at faculty or do his or her common functions. If your youngster is enduring extensive-term indicators, contemplate talking to your child’s academics about his or her desires.

How can young children get a COVID-19 vaccine?

Check with your area health and fitness department, pharmacy or your child’s doctor for information and facts on where by your youngster can get a COVID-19 vaccine. When producing an appointment for your youngster to get a COVID-19 vaccine, contemplate asking these thoughts:

  • Does a father or mother or guardian want to be existing at the appointment?
  • What information and facts will want to be presented in the course of the appointment?
  • Is there a limit on how quite a few family associates, this kind of as siblings, can show up at the appointment?

How shortly can a youngster get a COVID-19 vaccine just before or after receiving another vaccine?

A COVID-19 vaccine and other vaccines can be supplied on the identical day.

Previously, due to the newness of COVID-19 vaccines, the CDC had suggested against receiving any other vaccines two weeks just before and after receiving a COVID-19 vaccine. The CDC adjusted its advice centered on basic safety info gathered in latest months.

Remember, COVID-19 vaccination will shield most people from receiving ill with COVID-19. If you have thoughts or issues about your youngster receiving a COVID-19 vaccine, converse to your child’s doctor. He or she could possibly be in a position to assist you weigh the challenges and gains.