NY Times weighs in on antibiotics; why antibiotics need to be used carefully.

NY Times weighs in on antibiotics; why antibiotics need to be used carefully.

Many of us have been raised on the notion that when you had a cold, you needed antibiotics. Years ago, most doctors and patients never questioned that antibiotics were needed when we had a cold. The problem was, many of the bugs that harmed us morphed into other bugs that resisted the original antibiotics, creating super bugs. This rendered many antibiotics useless and created a chrisis of sorts in hospitals that found that resistant strains were not responsive to typical antibiotics.

About 20 years ago, studies confirmed this and pediatricians who helped train patients that antibiotics were somehow majical began to retrain their patients and their future generations that most colds were viruses and not responsive to antibiotics. This has been a slow process because parents often would bully their doctor into giving antibiotics and some physicians were slow to change their old ways. To make matters worse, some chains such as Walmart were practically giving antibiotics away to people as a marketing ploy a few years ago, with people often falsely believing that taking the antibiotic was somehow risk free.

In todays environment, most doctors are more cautious knowing that antibiotic overuse can render many antibiotics ineffective to resistant bugs, change the body PH and in women, cause yeast infections.

If you are taking antibiotics, you should expect in many cases to see a marked change in the problem you are experiencing within 24 hours usually of the onset of taking the antibiotic. If not, it is wise to have a culture taken immediately to rule out resistant strains or perhaps, it really is a virus. You should also eat pure yogurt or take acidophilus and ultrabifidis because it will restore your gut to a more normal state after you complete your dosage.

Antibiotics Are a Gift to Be Handled With Care

I should start by saying as clearly as I can that I love antibiotics. Recently I had dinner with a pediatrician friend, and she told me the story of the day’s sickest child. Before she sent the child to the emergency room in an ambulance, she told me, she gave her 50 milligrams per kilogram of ceftriaxone, a powerful antibiotic.

“You probably saved her life,” I said, and my friend nodded; it was possible. Antibiotics represent a huge gift in the struggle against infant and child mortality, a triumph (or actually, many triumphs) of human ingenuity and science over disease and death, since the antibiotic era began back in the fourth and fifth decades of the 20th century.

But new research is looking at questions about the complex effects of antibiotics — on bacteria, on individual children and on populations — building on a greatly increased awareness of how powerful antibiotics can be, and how important it is to use them judiciously.

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