Antibiotics 1

Monday, August 25, 2014

When you feel sick, you want to feel better fast. But antibiotics arent always the answer. Dr. Edward Hill explains why in todays 60 Second Housecall.

Dr. Hill:

Most illnesses are caused by two kinds of germs: bacteria or viruses. Antibiotics can cure bacterial infections but cannot cure viral infections.

Antibiotics are strong medicines that can stop some infections and save lives. But antibiotics can cause more harm than good when they are not used the right way.

Bacteria cause strep throat, some pneumonia and sinus infections. Antibiotics can work. Viruses cause common illnesses that antibiotics cannot treat, including:

Colds

Influenza

Runny noses

Most coughs

Most bronchitis

Most sore throats

Most sinus infections and

Some ear infections

Viral illnesses usually go away without treatment in a week or two. When an antibiotic is not prescribed, ask your doctor or pharmacist what can be used to relieve symptoms.

Dont expect antibiotics to cure every illness. Do not take antibiotics for viral illnesses like colds or the flu. The best thing you can do is let colds and the flu run their course. Whether or not you need antibiotics depends on what is causing your infection.

For North Mississippi Medical Center, Im Dr. Edward Hill.