As of June 14, 2021, more than 64 percent of Americans had received at least their first vaccination against COVID-19. Many myPHteam members have been vaccinated and are eagerly sharing their hopes and plans now that vaccination has lowered their risk for experiencing serious illness from the potentially deadly virus.
“I am feeling much better since the second shot,” shared one member. “I think it is well worth it to get vaccinated. Now I can hopefully be able to get out and back to a normal life.”
Many myPHteam members are excited for fun activities with friends and family again. Others are reveling in a return to normal social plans.
“We went to visit friends for dinner on Friday night (we all have been vaccinated) and it seemed like it was almost normal times again,” wrote one member. “We had a nice dinner and lots of fun talk, and everyone was happy.”
Still others are nervous about socializing again after being quarantined for a year — and that’s normal, experts say.
“Reentering society and socializing again is going to be a process,” wrote author Clay Drinko, Ph.D., in March. “Just like adjusting to pandemic life last year, this new transition is going to have its ups and downs. Instead of having unreasonably high expectations (I’m going to host a block party and be the belle of the ball), try to take it one step at a time and be curious about how each new interaction affects you (I'm going to try to talk to the neighbor and just see how it goes).”
About half of American adults have delayed or skipped some aspect of medical or dental care during the COVID-19 pandemic.
As myPHteam members get vaccinated, many are taking the earliest opportunity to schedule medical visits, eye appointments, dental exams, and diagnostic tests needed for pulmonary hypertension monitoring. “Have an appointment set up at Mayo Clinic next month,” said one member.
Other members are scheduling personal care appointments. “I got my hair washed, cut, and styled yesterday,” one myPHteam member wrote. “I felt great when I left the salon.”
As travel restrictions lift and more people are vaccinated, some myPHteam members are eagerly awaiting their first vacations in more than a year.
“Looking forward to my first trip since being diagnosed last year!” said one member. “Just some family time, but so overdue!”
Members report that they’re continuing to be cautious when socializing. “My husband and I have our vaccinations, and almost all our friends have as well,” shared one member. “I still [wear] my mask and socially distance, but I feel so much more secure now. I'm pro-vaccine!”
Even after you are fully vaccinated, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends continuing to take precautions such as:
Ensuring that you continue to prioritize your safety can help ease your mind as you get back into the swing of post-vaccine life, wrote psychologist Marina Harris, Ph.D., in May. “By following guidelines and associated protocols, combined with the vaccine, you’re being as safe as you can possibly be.”
Local health authorities may have additional guidelines in place for your state or county. Be sure to check what’s permitted before planning activities.
On myPHteam, the social network for people with pulmonary hypertension and their loved ones, more than 35,000 members come together to ask questions, give advice, and share their stories with others who understand life with PH.
Have you been vaccinated against COVID-19? Are you making plans now that your risk for infection is lower? Share your experience in the comments below, or start a conversation by posting on your Activities page.