At Prairie Clinic, our goal is to provide the highest quality medical care to the patients and community we serve. In 2016, an important part of this goal is using antibiotic medications correctly.
Viruses, not bacteria, cause many of the common illnesses that we see at Prairie Clinic. Examples include colds, flu, sore throats not caused by strep, many earaches, runny noses, and most coughs and bronchitis. Antibiotics only kill bacteria, so they do not help at all with these viral illnesses.
Antibiotics can also have very serious side effects. They are the cause of a rising illness named C. diff colitis that causes severe diarrhea and even death. Using antibiotics the wrong way can also cause bacteria to grow into resistant “super bugs”, making the next infection much harder to treat.
For these reasons, your provider may not give you antibiotics, even if you have been given them for similar symptoms in the past. If your provider does prescribe antibiotics, it is very important to take them exactly as directed. Finish all of the medicine even if you are feeling better. Don’t save antibiotics for the next illness or share them with others.
Working together and using antibiotics only when they are needed, we can have a healthier community. For more information on this topic, please visit http://www.cdc.gov/getsmart/community/index.html.