Do You REALLY Know How to Take an Antibiotic?
After all the years and the repeated health warnings, you’d assume people would be more careful about how they take an antibiotic, but you would be very wrong, according to a national survey conducted by the University of Michigan.
Researchers surveyed more than 2,200 patients between ages 50-80 about their use of antibiotics as part of the school’s ongoing work with the National Poll on Healthy Aging.
Are You Overusing Antibiotics?
A vast majority of patients (89 percent) believe overusing antibiotics can lead to a time when they no longer work as they’re prescribed and even more say they’re cautious about using them (91 percent).
Unfortunately, the poll numbers drop sharply when patients are asked about their own use of antibiotics.
For example, a majority believe antibiotics are over-prescribed, yet 41 percent would expect to receive a prescription if they saw their physician with a persistent problem like a cold or the flu.
Also, 34 percent of the patients polled believed a course of antibiotics would relieve a cold or the flu although neither respond to them, according to the CDC.
The other serious issue researchers discovered was a small but consistent number of patients (about 13 percent) who were prescribed an antibiotic but never finished taking them, increasing the risk of future resistance.
And what did patients do with the leftover antibiotics? More than half the time, they took those drugs without consulting their physician…
Follow Our Antibiotic Protocol
A quick look at these numbers is another sobering reminder that people remain unaware about the real problems with antibiotic resistance, underscoring the findings of a 2019 report from Oregon State University that concluded 43 percent of antibiotics prescribed in America were completely unnecessary.
What’s more, overusing antibiotics is only part of the problem, especially when you add exposures to antibacterial chemicals in soaps, paints and other unexpected places.
All of these things lead to health problems that cannot be treated by the tools we have currently have, plus they disrupt and deplete the balance of gut bacteria that keeps your immune system strong.
Should you have any concerns about taking antibiotics and how to use them safely (if you need them), take a couple of minutes to review our Antibiotics 101 article that features some simple steps you can take to lessen the need for them.
If you absolutely need an antibiotic, be sure to protect the healthy balance of bacteria in your gut by taking a probiotic about two hours before that necessary medication to give it extra time to reach the center of your immune system.
When you’re evaluating a good probiotic, consider ones that feature multiple strains of proven beneficial bacteria from the Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium families and a prebiotic (that feeds the good bugs in your gut), like EndoMune Advanced Probiotic.
Infection Control & Hospital Epidemiology
University of Michigan Mhealth Lab
National Poll on Healthy Aging