Health & Wellness

Disconnect on Antibiotic Use

By Wendy Haaf

While people aged 50 or older are generally well aware of the threats posed by antibiotic overuse, it seems that bad habits that contribute to the problem die hard. According to a US national poll of more than 2,200 adults aged 50 to 80, nearly 89 percent of respondents agreed that antibiotic overuse can lead to such drugs not working the next time they’re needed. Nevertheless, 34 percent said they believed antibiotics helped them recover from colds and the flu (viral infections that don’t respond to these drugs) and 41 percent said they would expect a prescription for one if they had a cold or flu that lasted long enough to see a doctor. In addition, 13 percent said they had medication left over from a course of prescribed antibiotics (which are intended to be taken until gone), and 65 percent of those people admitted to saving pills in case they needed them in future.”

Source: Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology

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