A lot of people still believe that antibiotics can treat any ailment and disease. With or without a proper prescription, it is still common for these people to take antibiotics for colds and coughs. This is a huge misconception towards antibiotics, and it has resulted in a grave world health problem called antibiotic resistance. November 18th to 24th is Antibiotic Awareness Week in Canada, an event that is meant to raise awareness about this problem and spread knowledge regarding the consequences of improper antibiotic usage.

The Value of Antibiotic

For the last hundred years, antibiotics have been a great help in the medical field by treating different infections caused by bacteria. However, as people have been continuously misusing them, bacteria have learned how to adapt and fight them off. Bacteria knows how to adapt and now a lot of diseases are now drug-resistant. Overusing antibiotics has caused this as it accelerates the process of bacterial mutation and reproduction. When a person consumes a large amount of antibiotics, these bacteria can turn antibiotic-resistant and they will be harder to kill. If they will not die easily, bacterial infections will be not easy to treat as well.

Did you know that over 30% of all prescriptions released in Canada are considered improper antibiotic prescriptions? One should always ask health professionals if taking one is really necessary and effective.

Do your tooth hurt and you want to grab antibiotics to lessen the pain? Before grabbing one, you must know that antibiotics do not cure toothaches. This practice is still rampant in Canada and all parts of the world. Without considering the risks of taking them, many will self-medicate with antibiotics. Self-medication is harmful, most especially if you are dealing with bacteria. If it was not prescribed by a physician, it is best not to take it.

Our mouth contains billions of bacteria, and bacterial infections can easily happen when proper oral care is neglected. Some of these bacteria are good, while some are bad. Good bacteria maintains the oral cavity’s cleanliness, and bad bacteria cause bacterial infections and diseases in the teeth and mouth. There are cases when antibiotics are necessary to treat oral infections, but it is not always needed and should only be done if recommended by your dentist.

Tooth abscess is a medical condition wherein pus is located in the tooth area. It should be treated as soon as possible because it is an infection that can spread to the mouth and neck. To treat this, the pus is drained and the tooth is extracted to remove any pus. Unfortunately, some people still believe that antibiotics can cure tooth abscess. Though that is not the case. As long as the pus is removed entirely from the gums, it is already treated.

This does not mean that antibiotics are not important in dental procedures and surgeries. When a patient has heart conditions, he is still required to take antibiotics before undergoing dental care. Using antibiotics is also recommended when a person is getting dental implants. Antibiotic usage and dosage depend on the person’s health history, and the type of bacterial infection he/she has.

The goal of this week’s event is to spread awareness about the risks of improper antibiotic use. A lot of bacterial infections are hard to treat. To name a few, some are pneumonia, gonorrhea, tuberculosis, urinary tract infections, and salmonellosis. In the near future, an estimated number of 10 million people worldwide will die from drug-resistant bacteria each year if people nowadays will continue using antibiotics the wrong way.

People who will be getting medical treatments will be at high risk too. If antibiotics become ineffective, those who will undergo chemotherapies and surgeries are at risk of acquiring life-threatening infections. Antibiotic awareness is important in society nowadays because instead of saving lives, antibiotics are becoming ineffective at curing diseases.

Antibiotic Resistance – What Must Be Done?

Antibiotic resistance is growing to be one of the biggest worldwide health-related problems.. To help this campaign, you can first start with yourself. Always visit and consult your physician before consuming any type of medicine. Follow instructions and take your medicines in the right dosage at the right time.  Do not double the dose the next time you take it when you miss one. If you found some leftover antibiotics in the drawer, do not use them to treat common ailments like fever and colds. Always follow what the prescription says and do not self-medicate.

There is plenty of information online and a quick search will give you lots of information about antibiotic misuse. From scientific journals to interesting quizzes, these can help you understand and know more about proper use of antibiotics. Share useful information about antibiotics among your friends and relatives. These actions towards antibiotic awareness will definitely help a lot of people in the future. To know more about the Antibiotic Awareness Week Campaign visit antibioticawareness.ca.