By Jacqui Boyle
Facts about antibiotic resistance
- Antibiotic resistance has been called one of the world’s most pressing public health problems.
- The number of bacteria resistant to antibiotics has increased in the last decade. Many bacterial infections are becoming resistant to the most commonly prescribed antibiotic treatments.
- Every time a person takes antibiotics, sensitive bacteria are killed, but resistant germs may be left to grow and multiply. Repeated and improper uses of antibiotics are primary causes of the increase in drug-resistant bacteria.
- Misuse of antibiotics jeopardizes the usefulness of essential drugs. Decreasing inappropriate antibiotic use is the best way to control resistance.
- Children are of particular concern because they have the highest rates of antibiotic use.
Antibiotic resistance can cause significant danger and suffering for people who have common infections that once were easily treatable with antibiotics. When antibiotics fail to work, the consequences are longer-lasting illnesses, more doctor visits or extended hospital stays, and the need for more expensive and toxic medications. Some resistant infections can even cause death.
Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
How to best treat a virus
- Get plenty of rest.
- Keep hydrated and drink plenty of fluids.
- Use a clean humidifier or cool mist vaporizer.
- Avoid smoking, second-hand smoke and other pollutants (airborne chemicals or irritants).
- Take acetaminophen, ibuprofen, or naproxen to relieve pain or fever.
- Practice good hand hygiene.
- Get vaccinated for influenza and other age-appropriate vaccines.
For more information about appropriate antibiotic use, visit www.cdc.gov/getsmart/index.html.
Source: Dr. Navjyot K. Vidwan , a pediatric infectious diseases physician at Dayton Children’s and an assistant professor at the Wright State University Boonshoft School of Medicine