Is your self-medication habits paving way to antibiotic resistance?

antibiotic resistance

Instincts do help us sometimes. But trusting your instincts in overriding matters like self-medication is a grave mistake that you need to immediately call off. In the name of getting rid of your health problems, you are literally tuning your body to a bigger problem- antibiotic resistance.

Antibiotic resistance is an underrated problem which nobody really talks about. This condition is caused merely due to few of our habitual mistakes, but its consequences are quite appalling and far-reaching. There arises a need to check on yourself and take moral responsibility to spread awareness on this pressing issue.

What is Antibiotic resistance?

Antibiotic resistance is a condition that occurs due to overuse of antibiotics. The antibiotic environment inside our body causes the bad bacteria to proliferate over the good ones and thus provide resistance to antibiotics in showing its effect.

Let’s talk in laymen terms.

Our body has many bacteria present (good and bad) and a few are resistant to the drug that is being used to kill it. When the good bacteria, which protects us against the bad bacteria gets excessively killed, it helps the bad bacteria to proliferate. The bad bacteria ultimately turn into Superbugs which turns resistant to any drug given to kill them and ultimately passes its properties to other bacteria present.

Essentially, bacteria don’t need to reproduce to pass along their genetic protection from antibiotics. They can simply pass along these genes to fellow bacteria like students passing notes in a classroom.

A better solution to a health problem could be use of antimicrobial agents instead of an antibiotic which only worsens the immunity of the body.

This essential knowledge is only known to health experts especially doctors. It’s probably one of the important reasons why self medication isn’t encouraged.

Let’s look at some of the scenarios which lead to Antibiotic resistance. We’ve also given you suggestions you could probably follow when you encounter the same situation again.

Situations that lead to antibiotic resistance

1. Using an antibiotic for almost everything.

The present common scenario

The scenario that most pharmacists are witnessing nowadays is overuse of antibiotics. People believe in the notion that an antibiotic is a cure for everything. Even in cases of health issues like diarrhea which is self-limiting, people pop in an antibiotic. They repeat this in most cases without knowing whether the health problem is viral or bacterial.

What could be done instead

It’s always better to visit a doctor if you are suffering with a health problem. As mentioned above, a doctor is very much aware of the constituents and dosage that could suit our body.

2. Using an old prescription for a current health issue (wrong medicine)

The present common scenario

As mentioned before, people seldom understand the difference between a microbial infection and a viral one. For example, if the person encountered the same stomach pain the second time, he begins to anticipate that it is similar to what he has suffered before. He then purchases the medicine from the pharmacy using the old prescription and the pharmacist also fails to notice it.

What could be done instead

The same health issues are caused by multiple factors. And so, it’s not right to match symptoms to a past health event. Though visiting a doctor for a same health issue is a costly affair, it’s much needed to do so. It’s safe to follow one doctor who knows your history well so that he could give you instructions on how to proceed further.

3. Taking stronger version of an antibiotic over the counter

The present common scenario

It’s not that people don’t understand, it’s just that they aren’t aware. In an article, a pharmacist states that people have evolved quite well on the know-how of self-medication. He states that people who earlier come to pharmacies for a particular medicine for a throat infection, ask for a stronger antibiotic today.

What could be done instead

Before purchasing over-the-counter medicines, state your symptoms to the pharmacist. It’s better to seek advice from an expert rather than follow your instincts on self-medication.

Undoubtedly healthcare could cost you a little time or money sometimes. It’s inevitable and it would be unwise to use shortcuts in healthcare. In midst of all the chaos, technology has been advancing to provide better solutions to make healthcare accessible and affordable.

We, at Klinikals bring healthcare a step closer to you by giving you options to choose from a range of healthcare services from a single platform. Book doctor appointment buy medicines from our network of pharmacies, order lab test or teleconsult a doctor via Chat/Voice/Video right at the comfort of your home. Download Klinikals app for quality and affordable healthcare.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *