Antibiotics Are Over-Prescribed, One In Three Aren’t Necessary, And Antibiotic-Resistant Infections Are Growing

Becky Padilla

Are you in the camp that thinks antibiotics are the standard go-to treatment from the doctor when you don't feel well? Studies have found that nearly one-third of prescribed antibiotics are unnecessary, which equates to nearly 47 million prescriptions per year!

Doctors know when you have something that needs an antibiotic, but sometimes will give in and grant a prescription when a parent asks for one for their kids, or if the adult wants one to be able to return to work, even if it is not necessary or wouldn't be beneficial. Doctors "want you to be happy," said Dr. Richard Besser on Good Morning America.

If you are treated with an antibiotic that does nothing to medically combat your symptoms, the only outcome is the inability of your body to react favorably to the antibiotic the next time it's really needed. There has been a steady increase in antibiotic-resistant infections, and a decline of antibiotics that can treat them. In addition, there are side effects to antibiotics including rashes, diarrhea and, in women, yeast infections.

The Washington Post reported back in September, 2013, that this was becoming an epidemic of alarming proportion. The threat does not just concern antibiotic-resistant infections, there is also growing concern about developing superbugs that aren't stopped by current antibiotics or borders.

"An overuse of antibiotics has led to the emergence of superbugs, disease-causing microbes that are becoming increasingly unaffected by even the most powerful drugs."

How often do you get sick? Do you ask for or get treated with antibiotics? You might want to rethink that course of action.

[Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images]