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Karen Phillips

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Antibiotic Resistance - A Mounting Problem
by Karen Phillips   

Last edited: Sunday, March 24, 2002
Posted: Sunday, March 24, 2002

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Antibiotic Resistance - We are creating antibiotic resistant bacteria.

Medicine Woman Herbals

Antibiotic Resistance – A Mounting Problem

Antibiotics, also known as antimicrobial drugs, are drugs that fight infections caused by bacteria. After their discovery in the 1940's they transformed medical care and dramatically reduced illness and death from infectious diseases. However, over the decades the bacteria that antibiotics control have developed resistance to these drugs. Today, virtually all important bacterial infections in the United States and throughout the world are becoming resistant. For this reason, antibiotic resistance is among CDC's top concerns.
Antibiotic resistance has been called one of the world's most pressing public health problems. Antibiotic resistance can cause significant danger and suffering for children and adults who have common infections, once easily treatable with antibiotics.
Antibiotic use promotes development of antibiotic-resistant bacteria. Antibiotic resistance occurs when bacteria change in some way that reduces or eliminates the effectiveness of drugs, chemicals, or other agents designed to cure or prevent infections. The bacteria survive and continue to multiply causing more harm. Widespread use of antibiotics promotes the spread of antibiotic resistance. While antibiotics should be used to treat bacterial infections, they are not effective against viral infections like the common cold, most sore throats, and the flu. Antibiotics kill bacteria, not viruses.
Smart use of antibiotics is the key to controlling the spread of resistance. Only use antibiotics when they are likely to be beneficial.
How can you prevent antibiotic-resistant infections?
· Talk with your health care provider about antibiotic resistance.
o Ask whether an antibiotic is likely to be beneficial for your illness.
o Ask what else you can do to feel better sooner.
· Do not take an antibiotic for a viral infection like a cold or the flu.
· Do not save some of your antibiotic for the next time you get sick.
· Take an antibiotic exactly as the doctor tells you.
· Do not take an antibiotic that is prescribed for someone else.
Both physician and patient overuse pharmaceutical antibiotics. That has been a major contributing factor in creating the antibiotic-resistant infections. I’m sure that most of you at one time have gone to a physician with a cold and left the office with a prescription for antibiotics. That prescription has absolutely no effect on the cold! A virus, not bacteria, causes colds. Therefore, the antibiotic has no effect. Antibiotics also serve to weaken the body’s immune system. Continual bombardment with antibiotics leaves your natural immune system in a weakened state and allows other bacteria or viruses to gain a foothold in your body. This becomes a cycle and causes the person to remain in a state of ill health.
The herbal realm contains several different herbs with antibiotic properties that serve to strengthen the body’s immune system, while ridding the body of the infection. Among these are Goldenseal and Coptis. Both these herbs also contain anti-viral properties and are helpful in eliminating viral infestations also. For this reason, we have included these two herbs in our Cold & Flu formula. Echinacea and Black-Eyed Susan are also immune boosting herbs. None of these herbs should be used continually because they will lose their effectiveness.

I hope that I have answered all your questions about this common disease. Further questions will be addressed through the Contact an Herbalist link on my web page at You will also find a complete product line of pure extracts, including the herbs discussed above.

Medicine Woman herbals is proud to announce the opening of our new website at Please visit our new site and peruse all the herbal pictures and information that you will find there. You may also use our secure online shopping cart on this site to purchase our products.

We can rely on The Wisdom of our Ancestors© to bring us knowledge to combat this problem.

© Copyright Medicine Woman Herbals 2002
All Rights Reserved

Web Site: Medicine Woman Herbals

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Reviewed by M. B.
I agree, allopathic antibiotics wreck havoc with the immune system, thereby creating a perfect setting within the body for other bacteria to take over and cause secondary illnesses and repeated vicious circles. They should only be used for serious, debilitating diseases, not for every little sniffle or sore throat we encounter.

I don't do allopathic anti-biotics and reared my children to not use them, we use natural anti-biotics such as garlic, for example, and as such, my kids received perfect attendance awards for school when younger, and never miss a day of work as adults. While we do have medical insurance, we never use it because we don't need to. I honestly believe avoiding allopathic anti-biotics played a large role in my family's excellent health today.

Good, informative article. I hope many people read this.
Reviewed by Cindy Jones
Karen, this is a great thing to bring to people's attention. Antibiotics are for life threatening diseases and if we keep using them for the sniffles they won't be of any use to us. Have you seen my book "The Antibiotic Alternative"? I hope so, it addresses this problem in depth and provides many alternatives for ailments often treated with antibiotics!
Cindy Jones
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