What You Need To Know About Antibiotic Resistance

Mom with pillsIt’s not fun to be sick. Whether it’s a summer cold, sinus infection, or sore throat, we usually start looking for remedies to make us feel better ASAP. Often, it’s a trip to the doctor and a round of antibiotics. But did you know that many common illnesses are caused by viruses, which antibiotics cannot treat and won’t help the symptoms? Antibiotic resistant bacteria are bacteria that are not controlled or killed by antibiotics. They are able to survive and even multiply in the presence of an antibiotic.

 

Antibiotic misuse can cause drug-resistant bacteria like MRSA and staph infections, which are extremely dangerous. According to our friends at the Better Health Channel, the most serious concern with antibiotic resistance is that some bacteria have become resistant to almost all of the easily available antibiotics. The chart below can help you understand which illnesses actually need antibiotics and which do not.

Chart of Antibiotics

It’s a tricky task to determine if a virus or bacteria is making you sick. Instead, see a medical professional if you think you may need antibiotics. At ProHealth, our medical providers will give you a thorough exam to determine the cause of your illness and get you the correct treatment to make sure you’re on the road to recovery.

Check out these tips from the Center for Disease Control (CDC) to fend off antibiotic resistance:

  • Ask your healthcare professional about what you can do to stop or slow antibiotic resistance.
    • Let them know you are concerned about this issue.
  • Ask your healthcare professional if there are steps you can take to feel better and get relief from your symptoms without using antibiotics.
    • Sometimes the best treatment for your illness may be relieving your symptoms, not an antibiotic.
  • Take the prescribed antibiotic exactly as your healthcare professional tells you.
    • If taken improperly, antibiotics are more likely to cause harm.
  • Safely discard any leftover medication.
    • The Food and Drug Administration provides helpful tips on how to safely dispose of unused medications.
  • Ask your healthcare professional about vaccines recommended for you and your family.
    • Vaccines are an effective way to prevent infections that may require an antibiotic.
    • Vaccines are also an important way to keep diseases from spreading

To see our sources and more information, visit CDC.gov and betterhealth.gov. Photo courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net.