Health Topics

Understanding Antibiotic Resistance

Did you know that nearly half of antibiotic prescriptions are not needed? Using antibiotics too much, too often, or not finishing a prescription reduces their effectiveness and can cause a problem called “antibiotic resistance.”

The good news is that you can protect your health and help prevent this growing problem. Here’s how:

  1. Don’t insist on antibiotics for yourself
  2. Ask your doctor, “is this antibiotic really necessary?”
  3. Only take antibiotics that follow a doctor’s instructions- don’t take a friends’ medication or pills from an old prescription.
  4. Prevent infections by washing your hands.
  5. Remember to get vaccinated for things such as the flu
  6. Finish each prescription that you receive – don’t stop taking an antibiotic once you feel better.

You can learn more about this problem from the Centers for Disease Control web site: www.cdc.gov/drugresistance/community