The discovery of penicillin in the year 1929 by Fleming marked the advent of the age of antibiotics. Ever since, antibiotics have been playing a major role in the arena of conventional medicine, so much so that these are considered to be the most overprescribed medicine all over the world. However, as the old saying goes, too much of anything is bad! Antibiotics are not free from side effects and overuse of these can be extensively harmful. The following points would highlight the reasons why overuse of antibiotics should be strictly avoided.
- Antibiotics come with various side effects, some to the extent of being fatal. Let alone the allergic reactions, many antibiotics are laden with impurities which are extremely harmful for health.
- Overuse of antibiotics often results in recurrence of infections. Intake of antibiotics weakens the immunity of a patientís body. Thus it is always wise to take antibiotics in moderation and of course, as per the physicianís prescription.
- Certain antibiotics, like the ones administered for diarrhea, result in loss of vital minerals. This could weaken the chemistry of the body and also adversely affect nutrition.
- One of the most alarming consequences of overusing antibiotics is inviting cancer! As per a report published by the International Journal of Cancer, people who have been taking antibiotics twice to five times within a span of two years run 27% more possibility of developing cancer. Again those who have taken more than six times within the same span have reported a 37% greater chance of developing cancer. This study has matched the one that has been published in the Journal of American Medical Association.
- Some studies have revealed that overuse of antibiotics can even lead to obesity. Children sometimes run the risk of being overweight by taking antibiotics frequently.
- Using antibiotics in infancy can lead to developing eczema and asthma in future. Improper handling of bronchial asthma can become life-threatening as well. Thus while administering antibiotics to children, it is very important to consider the future implications.
- Antibiotics are known for damaging liver. Thus when strong antibiotics are administered, liver function tests are conducted. Overuse of antibiotics can damage liver tissue and make the values of liver function tests shoot up.
Antibiotics are undoubtedly important when taken as prescribed. While taking antibiotics people should be very careful and aware of the consequences because it is always better to be safe than sorry!