Fall has come to the Tri-Cities and so has the illnesses. All too often I meet parents at my son’s school or at church and the discussion starts out with, “how is your child feeling?”
We visit the doctor seeking relief for our child or ourselves and very often tell the trained medical professional how to do his or her job. Have you ask for antibiotics? Some people do and without understanding the purpose of antibiotics. Many doctors are prescribing antibiotics on demand, is this a way of giving the patient a little emotional comfort? Only the physician understands what motivates them to prescribe antibiotics when it serves no obvious purpose.
Researchers are becoming very concerned. The wide use of antibiotics by patients and not taking as prescribed can cause bacteria over time to mutate and outsmart antibiotics, making antibiotics ineffective against infections. If you think about this, it’s a frightening scenario right out of the Sci-Fi Channel.
Are you taking an antibiotic? The most common antibiotictaken in the Tri-Cities is Amoxicillin or Penicillin and there are numerous others that are prescribed for various reasons. Penicillin’s are used in the treatment of bacterial infections.
What are bacterial infections? First, you need to understand bacteria. Bacteria cover’s your skin, live in your intestines and inhabit your private parts. Typically bacteria live in balance. Some help bodily processes along, while others keep potentially harmful bacteria in check. This is a normal part of earthly existence. When we have an infection, we are noticeably sick. The immune system revs up to fight offending bacteria. This often causes fever, as well as swelling, discharge and pain in the affected area. Sometimes the body will try to get rid of the bacteria through diarrhea or vomiting. But these symptoms can be due to non-bacterial illnesses too. So, it’s best to check with your doctor if you have any symptoms of infection. Through examination and sometimes tests, your doctor can determine whether an illness is bacterial and treat it properly.
Antibiotics only work against bacteria. They do not work against viruses, flu, etc. So, if you’re sick and your doctor says an antibiotic won’t help you, you probably have a virus instead of a bacterial illness and its best to accept the doctor’s opinion. If you are prescribed an antibiotic, ask questions and why it’s necessary.
Information for this article was obtained from the following: http://www.cdc.gov, http://www.myoptumhealth.com/http://www.webmd.comhttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Infection
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