Health and MedicineMedicinesThe health risks of taking antibiotics without a prescription

The health risks of taking antibiotics without a prescription

Taking antibiotics without a medical prescription and without the proper follow-up of a doctor can cause many health risks, especially if they are consumed abusively and without needing it.

The medical prescription basically consists of the clinical process through which the doctor tells the patient what medicine or drug they need to take, for how long and in what dose or quantities. The medical prescription is usually prescribed, the legal document through which doctors prescribe the medication to the patient, and they are then dispensed by the pharmacist. The importance of following the recommendations indicated by the doctor to the letter derives from the fact that the medications may not give us the expected effect if they are taken for fewer days or in lower doses.

Just as it is extremely dangerous to take medications without proper medical prescription. It is known as self- medication, and it can pose a risk to our health, especially when we take drugs without really knowing whether or not they could be effective for the disease or disorder we are suffering from. This is what happens, for example, with antibiotics.

As you surely know, antibiotics consist of drugs capable of killing or preventing the growth of certain classes of sensitive microorganisms (generally bacteria), being useful to treat infections caused by germs, or to prevent the appearance of bacterial infections. That is, they are drugs that only work against infections caused by bacteria, certain parasites and fungi. Therefore, antibiotics are not useful against viruses.

Taken abusively they can cause bacterial resistance

How many times have you not heard or read that taking antibiotics without needing they, and especially without the appropriate medical prescription in order to follow proper medical treatment, can pose a health risk because bacteria when a bacterial infection does occur make them stronger?

It is what is known as bacterial resistance, and it tends to appear when some bacteria become resistant to specific antibiotics, so that these drugs no longer work against them.  In other words, we must eradicate the idea that antibiotics are harmless medicines.

Why happens? Fundamentally as a consequence of having taken antibiotics too often, or when they are not used correctly (for example, when we do not take all the antibiotics that the medical specialist prescribed). It can also appear when we make the mistake of taking antibiotics for viral illnesses, for example in case of the flu or a cold, thinking that these medicines cure all illnesses.

It is interesting today to recover the campaign, with the message “Take them only when and how your doctor prescribes them. Using them well today, they will protect us tomorrow.”

In addition, if we take them without following the recommended doses, we can suffer certain side effects and adverse reactions, such as diarrhea, digestive discomfort, and skin disorders, intestinal problems such as flatulence or gas, food malabsorption and food intolerances. For this reason, it is always advisable to accompany the consumption of antibiotics with probiotics, products rich in live bacteria and lactic acid, which help strengthen our immune system while protecting our bacterial flora.

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