Antibiotics are medications that are used to treat infections caused by bacteria. They work by killing or stopping the growth of bacteria. There are different types of antibiotics, each of which target different types of bacteria. Some examples include penicillin, amoxicillin, and erythromycin.
Indications for antibiotics are bacterial infections such as strep throat, urinary tract infections, pneumonia, and certain skin infections. Antibiotics should not be used to treat viral infections such as the common cold or flu, as they are not effective against viruses.
Common side effects of antibiotics can include stomach upset, diarrhea, and allergic reactions. Long-term use or overuse of antibiotics can also lead to antibiotic resistance, where the bacteria become resistant to the effects of the antibiotic, making it harder to treat future infections.
Precautions when taking antibiotics include always taking the medication exactly as prescribed, completing the full course of antibiotics even if you start feeling better, and not sharing antibiotics with others or saving leftover medication for future use. It is also important to inform your doctor about any other medications you are taking, as antibiotics can interact with other medications. If you experience severe side effects, contact your doctor immediately.
To learn more, please click on https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/antibiotics/