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Study: Depression, stress could dampen efficacy of COVID-19 vaccin

Decades of research show that depression stress loneliness and poor health behaviours can weaken the body s immune system and lowers the effectiveness of certain vaccines A new report suggests that the same may be true for the new COVID 19 vaccines that are in development and the early stages of global distribution The report was published in Perspectives on Psychological Science Fortunately it may be possible to reduce these negative effects with simple steps like exercise and sleep The key to their success however is ensuring that a critical percentage of the population is effectively vaccinated to achieve so called herd immunity Environmental factors as well as an individual s genetics and physical and mental health can weaken the body s immune system slowing the response to a vaccine This is particularly troubling as the novel coronavirus continues to rage across the world trigging a concurrent mental health crisis as people deal with isolation economic stressors and uncertainty about the future These challenges are the same factors that have been previously shown to weaken vaccine efficacy particularly among the elderly Vaccines work by challenging the immune system
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