10 Things You Should Know About Antibiotic Overuse
Antibiotics are extremely important when it comes to modern medicine as they are the cornerstone as far as the treatment of infections due to disease causing organisms such as bacteria is concerned. Infections, as we are all aware, can be life-threatening if left unchecked which just goes to highlight the importance of antibiotics. We have all, at one time or another, been on a course of antibiotics, and what is usually stressed by the prescribing physician is that we follow the prescription to the latter. While failure to finish the dosage may be detrimental to your chances of healing, overusing the antibiotic will also have an equally adverse effect as it may lead to antibiotic resistance. Antibiotic resistance is an issue that has been on the rise for a while now and it can be traced to overuse of antibiotics, among other causes. This article will look to highlight 10 things you should know about antibiotic overuse.
As mentioned above, one thing you should know about antibiotic overuse is that it leads to antibiotic resistance. What this means is that bacteria will change and become difficult to kill, which will mean that antibiotics that were effective in treating certain serious conditions will cease working or being as effective as they were before. Antibiotic resistance is something that is becoming very serious as far as treatment of diseases is concerned.
Antibiotics only work on bacteria and not on viruses, so using of antibiotics to treat viral infections, such as the common cold, flu, bronchitis among others, is antibiotic overuse and will have adverse effects on the body. This is because, not only will it not treat the infection, it will cause harmful side effects as well as promoting antibiotic resistance.
Another thing you should know about antibiotic overuse is that it increases the chances of fatal diarrhea as far as children are concerned. This is especially when children are given antibiotics for viral infections since, according to the subject matter experts over at frontlineer.com, this will make them more susceptible to aggressive antibiotic-resistant strains of the bacteria which is commonly known as C. diff which causes severe diarrhea that can be fatal in children.
Another thing to note about antibiotic overuse is that it can lead to damage of good bacteria in the guts. This means that the overuse of bacteria will lead to the upset of the balance that exists between good and bad flora in the gut which will have a cascading impact on proper digestion and immunity. How this ensues is that by overusing bacteria, you will wipe out both the the deadly bacteria as well as the good ones, while the resistant bacteria, if they are there will be allowed an environment to prosper.
Another thing to know about antibiotic overuse, one that is usually understated, is that it can lead to good bacteria going bad. This is because it may lead to the good bacteria becoming resistant to certain antibiotics, traits that may be passed onto other more harmful bacteria, in a process known as gene transfer.
Another thing to note about antibiotic overuse is that it contributes greatly towards the increase of drug and hospital costs. This is because it leads to antibiotic resistance, which leads to the retiring of the ineffective antibiotics, making it a lot more expensive to treat infections as alternative forms of treatment and therapy will have to be sought, as covered in detail over at frontlineer.com. Other indirect financial hits due to this include unexpected hospital stays, lost wages among other, all due to antibiotic resistance which is caused by antibiotic overuse.
Another effect of bacteria overuse, and something that we should know is that it is the main cause behind the increase in cases of untreatable gonorrhea. This new strain of antibiotic-resistant gonorrhea not only causes pain but ectopic pregnancies, cases of tubal infertility, neonatal eye infections and pelvic inflammatory disease have been linked to it.
Another thing that is worth knowing about antibiotic overuse is that it is one of the main reasons why certain infections that were treatable quite easily in the past, are becoming more difficult to treat. They include ear infections, sinus infections, skin infections, pneumonia, meningitis among many others.
Antibiotic overuse, as stated above leads to antibiotic resistance, which may have an adverse effect as far as major surgeries go. This will make antibiotics less effective, and since major surgeries such as transplants come with the added threat of infection as well as the fact the immunity of persons who have undergone transplant surgery is intentionally suppressed to reduce the chances of the body rejecting the organ, will consequently make transport surgeries riskier, as is covered in detail over at frontlineer.com.
Speaking of antibiotic resistance due to antibiotic overuse and instances of suppressed immunity, antibiotic overuse could have a very big effect on cancer treatment. This is because chemotherapy suppresses the immunity of those undergoing it and thus has to go together with antibiotics. Antibiotic overuse will only help make chemotherapy treatment more dangerous.
The above are some of the things we need to note about antibiotic overuse, with more on this and other related topics to be found over at frontlineer.com.