Doctors prescribe antibiotics to fight infections caused by bacteria. Antibiotics will not work against viruses. They will not cure symptoms of the common cold or the flu.
Get vaccinated every year
The seasonal flu hospitalizes 200,000 people in the U.S. each year, and kills between 3,000 and 49,000 people.
The flu spreads when the weather cools and people are indoors together for longer periods of time. Even if it's still warm where you live, the flu season is the same throughout the country – typically from September through its peak in February to as late as May. So as soon as the vaccine is available, it’s time to get one.
The flu virus changes every year, which causes researchers to develop new vaccines every year. This means that preventing the flu requires getting vaccinated every year. You have the option of getting a flu shot or a nasal spray.
Use antibiotics carefully
Every time a person takes an antibiotic, some bacteria are killed but resistant germs may be left to grow, multiply and cause more harm. Almost every type of bacteria has become stronger and less responsive to antibiotic treatment. These antibiotic-resistant bacteria can spread quickly to family members, schoolmates and co-workers. They can threaten community members with a new strain of infectious disease that is more difficult to cure and more expensive to treat.
Repeated and unnecessary uses of antibiotics are primary causes of the increase in drug-resistant bacteria. Smart use of antibiotics is the key to controlling the spread of antibiotic resistance.
Tips to remember:
For more information, including free downloads of educational material, visit www.aware.md.
Medical Advice Disclaimer
The information provided is not intended as medical advice or as a substitute for professional medical care. Always seek the advice of your physician or other health provider for any questions you may have regarding your medical condition and follow your health care provider’s instructions.
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