It is often suggested we live in a state of fear in modern society. If it isn’t one thing, it is another. Global warming, super volcanoes, weapons of mass destruction and so on make one wonder how we’ve survived this long.
Because of this general state of panic, we often fail to recognize big problems that aren’t particularly sexy to the media. One of these problems is the developing crisis regarding the effectiveness of antibiotics. Simply put, they don’t work as well as they used to.
Viruses and bacteria are becoming resistant to our most common antibiotics. Consider these facts. Of the roughly 100 antibiotics we have, every bacteria strain that causes us illness has developed at least one strain that is resistant to an antibiotic treatment. Nearly 20,000 people die in medical facilities every year from antibiotic resistant bacteria. When it comes to blood poising and pneumonia caused by Staphylococcus aureus, we are down to our last effective antibiotic – Vancomycin.
So, how did we get to this point? Is it just the natural order of things? Well, yes and no. Over time, it is true that bacteria will slowly develop resistances to the drugs used to treat them. The key to that statement, however, is “over time.” While we would inevitably expect to have problems, we are having them far too early.
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Okay, is there a reason why we are seeing antibiotic resistant strains well before one would expect them? Yes. The problem has to do with our use of antibiotics. Simply put, we treat them as a wonder drug that is good for anything. This is true for both the medical profession and society in general.
In the medical profession, antibiotics are prescribed like candy. Research has shown that they are used by doctors 60 percent more than they should be. Further study has shown the more antibiotics are used, the quicker bacteria develop strains that are resistant to the drugs. In short, we are talking cause and effect.
Ah, but the medical profession is not the only one to blame. Most people are not aware that they are eating antibiotics practically every day. How? Well, they are in the meat products you eat including beef and poultry. They are also in animal products such as milk. These antibiotics are used as a precautionary measure for the animals who are housed in less than stellar conditions.
The biggest scare these days is Vancomycin resistant bacteria. Vancomycin is the antibiotic of last resort for pneumonia and the Staph infection superbug. Cases of bacteria not reacting to the drug are becoming more prevalent all the time. You’ve probably read about patients dying in the hospital. If this resistance becomes widespread, we have no immediate solutions and a plague of sorts could very well occur. How about that for a state of fear?!
About the Author:
By: John Grimes
John Grimes is with AllTerrainco.com – makers of Hand Sanz sanitizer which kills the deadly staph superbug withing 15 seconds of contact. Visit AllTerrainco.com to read the lab results.
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