Overuse of antibiotics has made the bacteria they’re supposed to kill so resistant to the drugs’ effects that the FDA is now urging doctors to think twice before prescribing them. Among the bacteria that are becoming resistant to antibiotics’ ability to eradicate them are those that cause such serious illnesses as pneumonia, meningitis, and sexually-transmitted diseases.
Doctors contribute to the problem, the FDA says, by prescribing antibiotics for illnesses like earaches or chronic coughs that aren’t always caused by bacteria. In fact, government estimates show that out of 100 million antibiotic prescriptions written each year, 50 million are unnecessary.
(Source: Tufts University Health & Nutrition Letter)