When we are ill, most of us seek help in antibiotics. The ability of these drugs to treat a variety of diseases and effectively kill infections is so appealing to us, that we start taking antibiotics whenever there is any threat to our heath. Such attitude towards these medications may eventually lead to very unpleasant consequences. So let’s take a look at the most common myths about antibiotics, so not to make crucial and harmful mistakes during treatment.
Infectious Diseases Always Require Antibiotic Treatment
That’s not true, because besides bacteria, which are the target to antibiotics, infectious diseases can be caused by viruses, fungi or protozoa. In the case of such diseases, antibiotics are useless. Do not even try to treat acute respiratory viral infections, flu, hepatitis, etc. with antibiotics. Most respiratory infections are caused by various viruses; therefore, antibiotics are worth using only if a secondary bacterial infection develops in the setting of a viral infection.
If you have a Cold, it is better to take Antibiotics to Prevent Any Possible Complications
What we usually call ‘a cold’, in most cases is viral respiratory infections that cause not too serious inflammations and human immune system could fight them on its own or with little help aimed at reducing unpleasant symptoms using symptomatic drugs. In addition, allergic rhinitis can be quite often confused with the beginning of a cold. In all these cases, the preventive use of antibiotics is pointless. Such misuse of antibiotics might lead to the resistance of opportunistic pathogens to the antibiotic you’ve taken or cause allergic reactions.
It is Fine to Stop Taking Antibiotics Once you Feel Better
That is perhaps the most serious mistake that could lead to the development of resistant bacteria. If you have been prescribed with an antibiotic, it’s essential to take the whole course of treatment administered by your doctor in order to prevent recurrent infections. If you stop taking your antibiotic drug too soon, some pathogens may survive and make you sick again.