As part of World Antibiotic Awareness Week (WAAW) (14 – 20 November 2016) and European Antibiotic Awareness Day (18 November) Doctors in Hull
would like to remind people that most common winter illnesses are unaffected by antibiotics.
Labelled ‘our most precious medical resource’, antibiotics are the cornerstone of modern medicine; however, if used too frequently the bacteria they are used to treat can become ‘antibiotic resident’ which puts individuals at risk.
With cold and flu season upon us, Doctors from NHS Hull Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) would like to remind Hull residents that most winter illnesses are actually unaffected by Antibiotics.
Dr Dan Roper, NHS Hull CCG Chair said:
“It’s essential that we cut the unnecessary use of antibiotics. For healthy individuals, with no underlying medical issues, most winter illnesses are completely unaffected by antibiotics. Self-care, over the counter medicines and rest are often the best remedies for coughs and colds; our bodies naturally recover over time.”
“If you’re suffering with coughs, colds and other minor ailments, and you have a long term health condition, like asthma or chronic heart disease, then you can always speak with your local pharmacist or GP to find out more about the most appropriate treatment.”
There are a few simple things you can do to help preserve antibiotics:
- Antibiotics should be taken exactly as prescribed, never saved for later or shared with others.
- Make sure that you complete the full course of medication, even if you start to feel better.
- Don’t demand antibiotics. Antibiotics may not always be affective or necessary.
- Most illnesses like coughs, colds and flu do not require antibiotics; a local pharmacist can advise how to best treat your symptoms.
- Many minor infections (such as ear or throat) will get better on their own. If your symptoms have not improved after 5 days, speak to your GP.
- Always take any unused antibiotics to a pharmacy for safe disposal.
Dr Roper added:
“Without effective antibiotics many routine treatments will become increasingly dangerous. Setting broken bones, surgical operations and even chemotherapy rely on antibiotics that work.”
To find out more, or to become an Antibiotics Guardian visit www.antibioticguardian.com