Find information on: COVID-19 Vaccine  | New Visitor Guidelines
Return to University Health's Homepage.

COVID-19 Vaccine Myths vs Facts

Contact Us

Get vaccinated. Choose to protect yourself, your family and your community.

COVID-19 Vaccine Myths vs Facts

Myth: The development of the vaccine was rushed, so it isn’t safe.

Fact: The COVID-19 vaccine was not rushed. mRNA technology was developed over three decades. The vaccines went through the same trials and study that other vaccines have in the past. Some trials overlapped, but the vaccines passed all trials to ensure they are safe and effective. The FDA fully approved the COVID-19 mRNA vaccine for people 16 and over on Aug. 23.

Myth: The vaccine will change my DNA.

Fact: The COVID-19 vaccines do not interact with your DNA and will not change it. mRNA vaccines work by teaching our cells how to build a protein. This protein triggers a response in your body, which builds antibodies against COVID-19. The mRNA never enters the nucleus of the cell, which is where the DNA is.

Myth: I’m young, so COVID-19 won’t affect me.

Fact: Children, adolescents and young adults are susceptible to catching and spreading COVID-19. Young people with obesity, asthma or diabetes are at risk of becoming seriously ill. During the summer of 2021, people 18 to 49 made up the largest part of hospitalized people due to COVID-19.

Myth: The vaccine contains harmful ingredients.

Fact: None of the COVID-19 vaccines contains harmful ingredients. None contains metals, eggs, gelatin, latex, or preservatives. You can find the full list of vaccine ingredients on the CDC website.

Myth: I’ll get COVID-19 from taking the vaccine.

Fact: You cannot get COVID-19 from taking the vaccine. None of the COVID-19 vaccines authorized by the FDA contains the live virus. You may experience temporary side effects from the vaccine like fever, headache and arm soreness. These are signs that your body is building immunity to COVID-19.

Myth: The side effects from the vaccine are worse than the symptoms of COVID-19.

Fact: The side effects from the vaccine are temporary and mild compared to COVID-19. Side effects from the vaccine may include fatigue and arm soreness, which will go away in about 24 hours.

COVID-19 can cause serious and sometimes long-term health problems. Symptoms of COVID-19 that can last for weeks or months after infection include:

  • Difficulty breathing
  • Brain fog
  • Chest pain
  • Change in taste or smell
  • Joint and muscle pain

Some people with COVID-19 need hospitalization, and some of those people need care in the ICU. Severe illness with COVID-19 can cause damage to your heart, brain, lungs and kidneys. In the United States over 650,000 people have died of COVID-19.

Myth: I already had COVID-19, so my antibodies will protect me.

Fact: People who have already had COVID-19 are not protected against the delta variant. We don’t know how long antibodies will protect you. The vaccine will offer more protection.