Did you know that over half a million people die every year from drug-resistant bacteria? Resistance to antimicrobial pharmaceuticals is caused by the overuse of antibiotics, which allows microorganisms to adapt, become immune, and multiply.
Taking place from November 18th to the 24th, World Antimicrobial Awareness Week is an annual global event aimed at improving the understanding about the risks of antimicrobial resistance and what can be done to slow it down.
While it’s obviously good to protect yourself against bacterial infections, there are some cases where antibiotic use isn’t the way to go. In this article, we’ll explain some of the reasons why overusing antibiotics should be avoided.
1. Antibiotic Resistance
Antibiotic resistance happens when bacteria change and become resistant to antibiotics. The more you use an antibiotic, the more likely it is that bacteria will develop resistance to it. This means that if you get sick with an infection that requires an antibiotic, your doctor may not be able to treat it effectively because the bacteria causing your illness has become resistant to current available antibiotics. MRSA (Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus) infection is one example of this, and it is a common problem in hospitals and nursing homes.
Antibiotic resistance is a well-known but growing public health problem that threatens to make common infections and minor injuries far more dangerous. Antibiotic-resistant bacteria are on the rise, and the more we use antibiotics, the more likely they are to develop resistance.
2. Ineffective against viruses
Although some viral infections are accompanied by symptoms similar to those of bacterial infections, viruses cannot be treated effectively with antibiotics. When people feel very sick with a virus, they often feel compelled to ask their doctor for an antibiotic, but antibiotics only work against bacteria, not viruses. So, if you have a cold or flu, an antibiotic will do nothing to help you feel better.
3. They may cause side effects
Antibiotics can result in side effects. The most common side effects are digestive ones, in particular diarrhea, but some people may experience nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, bloating, indigestion, loss of appetite, or skin rashes when taking antibiotics. Others may experience more serious adverse reactions, such as anaphylaxis, a severe allergic reaction that can be life threatening.
Some side effects, such as from tetracyclines can cause light sensitivity for the skin, while fluoroquinolones, though rare, may cause lasting joint pain or heart issues.
4. Increased risk of infection from other sources
Secondary bacterial infections are ones that occur during or after treatment for another infection, sometimes caused by the treatment. For example, a person treated with antibiotics might find themselves ending up with a yeast infection like a vaginal yeast infection, a fungal foot infection, or thrush (an oral fungal infection).
5. Antibiotics kill good bacteria in your body
Your digestive tract is full of important bacteria that help you break down food and absorb nutrients. The more often you take antibiotics, the greater your risk of developing digestive issues and food sensitivities, especially if you have immune system challenges. This is because antibiotics kill off large amounts of beneficial bacteria that help maintain the proper functioning of your immune system.
Antibiotics can cause nutrient deficiencies if used too frequently or improperly. Without sufficient gut flora to help break down food properly, vitamins and minerals are poorly absorbed.
Use reishi mushrooms to keep your immune system strong throughout the cold and flu season
The overuse of antibiotics is a serious problem. Not only can it lead to antibiotic resistance, but it can also weaken your immune system, making you more susceptible to becoming ill.
Are you looking for an effective and safe way to boost your immune system this cold and flu season?
Taking reishi mushrooms regularly is an amazing way to give your immune system the support it needs when it needs it most. They are an easy-to-use, all-natural go-to wellness remedy for when cold and flu season hits. Best taken daily as a preventative measure, reishi mushrooms are chock full of antioxidants and other compounds that can help keep your body healthy and strong, even as it fights off viruses and bacteria.
The best thing is that because they are adaptogens, helping the body to deal with stressors, reishi mushrooms can support you in a wide range of ways. One of the top ways that reishi helps is by calming the nervous system and supporting a balanced mood. So, if you find the cold dark seasons are giving you the blues, work and family expectations are stressing you out, or worries about the future are leaving you anxious, reishi can help. And, when you support a calm nervous system, your immune system is better able to operate more effectively.
All this without hurting your good bacteria. In fact, reishi may even support the growth and maintenance of probiotics. So, if you’re trying to avoid getting sick or you’re feeling under the weather, give reishi mushrooms a try.