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The Abuse and Misuse of Antibiotics [Infographic]

Did you know that we’re routinely making already harmful bacteria even stronger with antibiotics? This results in the formation of dangerous Superbugs! In hospitals, 190 million doses of antibiotics are administered each day—and for non-hospitalized patients, 133 million courses of antibiotics are prescribed annually. It’s shocking then that 50 percent of these prescriptions are completely unnecessary. Over $1.1 billion is spent annually on unnecessary antibiotic prescriptions for respiratory infections in adults.

Among the most common unnecessary uses of antibiotics include treating ailments caused by viruses—bronchitis, sore throats, seasonal flu, and sinus infections—and treating ear infections in children. New Academy of Pediatrics guidelines (Feb. 2013) recommends that a child only receive antibiotics if he or she fails to improve within 48 to 72 hours. The organisms antibiotics are designed to kill have adapted and are fighting back, creating Superbugs. Examples of bacterial superbugs include Carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE) and Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA).

How can we keep these Superbugs at bay? We can get better at keeping it clean—50 percent of men and 25 percent of women don’t wash their hands after using the restroom. To learn more about Superbugs and what you can do to keep these high-powered bacteria at bay, check out the infographic below presented by mphonline.org.

The Abuse and Misuse of Antibiotics [Infographic] image antibiotics2
Source: MPHOnline.org

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