Since the discovery of penicillin in 1928, antibiotics have steadily become one of the most commonly used types of drugs in the world. They help us fight dangerous bacterial infections, and their importance can’t be overstated. However, it seems that their antibacterial properties are being overused, which can have a lot of negative effects for the human health.
So, what are the dangers of taking too many antibiotics?
Antibiotic Overuse Stats
According to a study by the Public Health England, more than 20% of all antibiotic prescriptions in England are inappropriate. The research shows that, while most of the antibiotics prescribed in primary care are for respiratory and urinary tract infections, almost a third of prescriptions presented no clinical reasons.
An unnecessary antibiotic was prescribed for conditions like rhinosinusitis (88%), bronchitis (82%), sore throat (59%), and other uncomplicated acute cough conditions (41%).
The Dangers of Antibiotic Overuse
The reason why prescribing too many antibiotics could be dangerous is their long-term effectiveness. Taking antibiotics when you don’t need them can help bacteria to change and adapt, so they become resistant to antibiotics. Over time, you can help create advanced bacteria that can be very hard to kill even with the strongest antibiotics we have today.
The global overuse of antibiotics has led medical professionals over the world to declare the Antibiotic resistance crisis – a fast emergence of resistant bacteria all over the world. Combined with the pharmaceutical industry’s inability to come up with new, advanced drugs, this crisis has already endangered millions of lives.
Taking too many antibiotics can contribute to the global antibiotic resistance crisis and help create stronger bacteria. Avoid taking antibiotics for mild colds and only take them when you absolutely need them.