Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Don't Waste Your Health Care Dollars

If you think you have the flu, don't waste your time or your money badgering your doctor for a prescription for antibiotics. Flu, including the current swine flu, is caused by a virus.

Antibiotics only work against bacteria. If you do develop a secondary bacterial infection as a result of your body being weakened by influenza or another viral infection, antibiotics will help those secondary infections. Until then, taking antibiotics will not help keep you well, and in fact may lead to worse sickness. First, the excessive or incorrect use of antibiotics can lead to the development of resistant strains of bacterial illnesses, so that the antibiotics won't work when you really do need them. Secondly, antibiotics purge all the bacteria in your body indiscriminately, including the helpful bacteria that are normally resident in your gut and help you gain nourishment from your food.

So save your money for medicines that will actually help you get and stay well.

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