My posts here are mainly about Burning Mouth Syndrome, (or Disorder if you prefer). Either one fits. I share medications that have worked and not worked for me, strategies to track your pain and see what is having an effect, and coping strategies to help you get through day after day of chronic pain.
Today, I am addressing another kind of pain we can get every time we go for a vaccination. Flu, Covid, Covid Booster, updated Covid Booster, Shingrex, or any other that is recommended…yes, the dreaded arm pain from injections! Some of you find it quite debilitating, some can barely move their arm the next day, and some have varying levels of discomfort depending on what they got this time.
You may decide to get a Covid shot or not, your choice. But darn it, we also lose people every year to flu and it is nearly always preventable in otherwise fairly healthy folks. The flu vaccine has been used for years with few issues, and although there are years when it is more effective than others, it is still worth getting to me. Take a look at the influenza news coming out of Australia and it will give you a preview of what we may be dealing with this winter.
So how do you avoid the arm soreness that can come with vaccinations?
My latest pharmacy tech shared her secret with me last week and now I am sharing it with all of YOU! I got my flu shot and updated Covid Booster in the same arm and joked about hoping not to have to use it the next day.
The tech laughed and said, “Yeah, it’s always good to move it around a lot after the vaccination, but what REALLY works is Massage.”
What??!! I had heard of lifting weights and I even have one friend who goes so far as to punch himself in the arm, but massage had never come up! She told me to take a hand-held massager and vigorously massage the upper arm when I got home. The injection sites are fairly numb at first so you can be pretty aggressive. Then periodically during that evening, massage it again until you go to bed.
I tried it, reserving judgment until the next morning.
Wow! What a difference. In spite of having two vaccinations at once, my arm was nearly pain-free! There was a bit of residual stiffness, but I pulled out that handy massager and hit it again and even that small discomfort was relieved. This really worked, and I hope it works as well for you!
Take care out there!