Is Your Antibiotic Safe?

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Updated: Thursday, December 13, 2012, 9:30 [IST]
 
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Antibiotics is the greatest discovery in human evolution so far to treat various diseases. They are commonly used for the treatment or prevention of bacterial growth in the body. The first antibiotic that was used to kill bacteria was penicillin. Today, as many as 100 antibiotics are available in the market that are used to cure minor as well as life saving infections.

The easy availability of these antibiotics have facilitated self medication in many people today. We know that self medication can be dangerous yet popping antibiotics without medical consultation has become very common these days. According to recent researches, use of antibiotics without taking precaution can develop resistance to antibiotic. This in turn can give rise to serious health complications. Therefore, proper precautions must be taken while taking antibiotics.

Here we give a list of various do's and don'ts when taking antibiotics.

Is Your Antibiotic Safe?

1. Don't pop more than one antibiotic at a time: When you are under antibiotics, you should not take more than one pill at a time. Antibiotics fight against infections by producing antibodies that kill the disease causing bacteria. So, if you eat more than one antibiotic at a time, it will negate the effect.

2. Don't take antibiotics very often: Taking antibiotics at a very short interval of time can trigger your body to develop resistance towards the drug. According to the ECDC (European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control), antibiotic resistance continues to be a serious public health threat worldwide. In a statement issued in November 2012, the ECDC informed that an estimated 25,000 people died in a year in European Union from antibiotic-resistance bacterial infection.

3. Avoid alcohol if under medication: Never drink alcohol when you are on antibiotics. According to various researches, it has been found that alcohol when taken with antibiotics produces a chemical called acetaldehyde that gives rise to many health problems.

4. Drink lot of water: Antibiotics are very hard on the kidney and they can also lead to stomach upset. Therefore, you must drink lots of water and other fluids like fruit juice when you are on antibiotic tablets.

5. Make sure you are not allergic to any salt in the drug: Although antibiotics are useful to treat a wide variety of infections, you need to observe if you are allergic to any particular salt in the drug or not. If you feel fatigue or suffer from nausea or dizziness after taking the antibiotics, immediately consult a doctor. If you have any of these symptoms then you must consult with your doctor before taking antibiotics.

6. Special care of dosage: The last but not the least precaution that you need to take while taking antibiotic is its dosage. Antibiotics are very hard on the body and can makes you weak over a time. As mentioned earlier, they make antibodies in the body. So, proper caution must be taken in dosage otherwise it can make your body resistant to antibiotics.

7. Always eat before you take the medicine: Antibiotics are very hard on the body. Therefore, it is always advised by doctors to have a proper meal atleast half and hour before taking antibiotics. Otherwise it may leads to stomach problems and stomach cramps. However, there are some antibiotics that can be taken empty stomach. So, always read the guidelines on your antibiotic tablet before you take them.

So, next time think twice before popping any antibiotic tablet. If not taken under precautions and prescription, this self-medication can bring in other health complications

Topics: health, medicine
Story first published:  Thursday, December 13, 2012, 9:30 [IST]
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