Antibiotics are not for colds or flus
Start writing a post
Health and Wellness

Cold & Flu Season Is Scarier Than We Give It Credit For

Winter is here! This is what you absolutely should NOT do this season!

Cold & Flu Season Is Scarier Than We Give It Credit For
Alyssa Gasa

As we dive deeper into winter it seems now is the time when everyone begins getting sick. Stress levels are at their highest, classrooms are filled with sniffles, the sound of coughing is always in the background and you soon find yourself feeling extra tired and extra paranoid you caught the "thing" going around. When winter sneaks up on us it's hard to avoid getting sick like everyone else. There are precautions to take but sometimes it really is unavoidable.

Now when we get sick it's not nearly as detrimental as it once was. About 70 years ago, if you happened to get an infection there was a very good chance it was going to kill you. That was at least until 1928 when penicillin was first discovered by Alexander Fleming. Since then antibiotics had flourished! They found a cure for what used to be severe and life-threatening. Since then, however, new discoveries of antibiotic classes have stagnated. Antibiotics today are not like they used to be when they were first discovered. The biggest reason? Antibiotic resistance.

Antibiotic resistance is when a bacterial pathogen built up resistance to an antibiotic and it no longer treats it. There are many factors that have led to antibiotic resistance and it's hard to pinpoint it to one reason or cause. Simply, there are many reasons bacteria have become resistant to antibiotics. However, Dr. Charles Penn from The World Health Organization believes, "The use of antibiotics at any time in any setting puts biological pressure on bacteria that promotes the development of resistance. When antibiotics are needed to prevent or treat disease, they should always be used. But research has shown that as much as 50% of the time, antibiotics are prescribed when they are not needed or they are misused (for example, a patient is given the wrong dose). This inappropriate use of antibiotics unnecessarily promotes antibiotic resistance."

While health professionals could be a big factor with misdiagnosing, the biggest area of concern is that of the public. A cold or flu is a viral infection and cannot be helped by antibiotics. Repeat with me "A COLD OR FLU CANNOT BE TREATED BY ANTIBIOTICS." Never take antibiotics for anything but bacterial infections when prescribed. When they first came out antibiotics were used for almost everything even seeming like an infection. Thankfully that has changed but there is still growing concern. Currently, there is an antibiotic, carbapenem, which treats hospital infections (like pneumonia) and other bacteria that are resistant to the common antibiotics. Horrifyingly enough, more and more bacteria are becoming resistant to it. By using these same antibiotics for decades it's no wonder resistance is being built up and more commonly so. The solution isn't necessarily finding new antibiotics as some believe but rather help prevent the infections in the first place.

There are precautions that health providers have stressed heavily recently in order to combat antibiotic resistance, especially during the flu seasons.

- Wash your hands (warm water, soap, and scrubbing)

- NEVER use anyone's "left-over" antibiotic

- NEVER take your own "left-over" antibiotic

- Take all the prescribed dose and in the time frame given by the provider

Disclaimer: I am not an expert by any means but this is a serious emerging problem. You can read more at the CDC, Medical News Today, and at Healthline.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

A Conversation About Sex

"Sex is a part of nature. I go along with nature." - Marilyn Monroe

Thinking Beyond Barriers

There it is. Even though I'm not around you, I can feel it. Was there a flutter of embarrassment in your mind when you saw the word sex in this article’s title? Did you look over your shoulder to ensure nobody was around before you began to read this?

Keep Reading... Show less

13 Signs You Are A True Cancer Of The Zodiac

Calling all babies born June 21st - July 22nd!

My Astral Life

I'm the first to admit that I am one of THOSE people who uses their zodiac sign as a description of themselves. I realize not everyone believes in astrology-related anything, and there are plenty of people who don't fit their signs. However, I'm one of the people who truly fits their sign to a tee. I'm a Cancer, a Crab, a Moon Child. It's currently our season fellow Crabs! So without further ado, here are all of the signs that you're a Cancer.

Keep Reading... Show less

The Blessing of Lacking Sex Appeal

To all the fellow non "it" girls out there


Lacking sex appeal is not a desirable thing. It makes you fee not ugly, but wrong. Not having charisma is not a life goal. It doesn't make you fee friendless, but isolated. Not being the "it" girl happens, and tonight (and every nigh prior to this)

Keep Reading... Show less

Confessions From the Single Friend of the Group

It is truly the worst place to be

Confessions From the Single Friend of the Group

Look. If you are anything like me, complaining about being single is such a hard thing to because you are genuinely happy for your friends, but as they continue to be happy in their relationships, the ever crushing weight of being the single friends can become overwhelming. For context, my primary friend group consists of four people. We are all roommates and it is a great time here. All three of my roommates have boyfriends/girlfriends, which makes our friend group of four quickly jump to seven, and it is wonderful! I love my roommates so much and I love their S.O's, but no matter how much I love them I always get extremely jealous and sad. The sad thing is that the only part that ever truly ends up bugging me is that since I am single, they are my go-to top priorities and it has been really hard to watch myself slip from the top of their go-to's to not being their go to when they feel the weight of the world. What makes it harder is that expressing that I feel alone and unwanted makes me sound jealous and like I don't want my friends to hangout with their people. I get it. I do. But there are just days I want to be someone's first pick and I'm not.

Keep Reading... Show less

Aretha Franklin Will Forever Be A Detroit Legend, I'm Proud To Share A Hometown With Her

Aretha Franklin lost her battle to pancreatic cancer, so we stop to reflect on her powerful journey.

Aretha Franklin Will Forever Be A Detroit Legend, I'm Proud To Share A Hometown With Her

Recently, Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul, passed away. Ms. Franklin grew up singing in her church's choir in Detroit. Over the years, she decided to make singing a career, first signing to Columbia Records at 18. Years later, she signed with Atlantic Records where her most powerful tunes, such as "Respect," are remembered to this day. Her breathtaking vocals earned her 18 Grammy Awards and made her one of the best-selling artists of all time.

Keep Reading... Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments