Every year, your family probably faces its share of colds, sore throats, and viruses. When you bring your child to the doctor for these illnesses, do you automatically expect a prescription for antibiotics?Most people are probably also aware that antibiotics are prescribed way too frequently these days by many doctors, even for health issues that antibiotics can’t relieve.
Antibiotics are necessary and can even save lives, but they are also over-prescribed and misused. When antibiotics are prescribed to children for viral (rather than bacterial) illnesses, they are ineffective and can cause lifelong changes to gut bacteria, metabolism, and the immune system. Read on to find out when antibiotics are appropriate, and learn strategies to reduce the need for antibiotics and to protect your children’s microbiome and future health.
The commonly known problem is that as the use of antibiotics becomes more and more widespread, the bacteria become more and more resistant. This is especially common when people quit their antibiotics prescription halfway through because they “feel fine”; some of the surviving bacteria then mutate into more resistant strains and spread into other people..
My story …
I’m a mother of one bubbly boy , like most mothers out there i am learning how to naturally strengthen my son’s immune system as he grows …It all started when my son got ill more than a year ago and , what i thought was a common cold turned out to be diagnosed as pneumonia when he was eighteen months old .We was admitted into hospital put thru a series of treatments and IV therapy and finally he was back home fully recovered .
However that was not e end of it , the most part of the year after that he would constanlty catch a cold /flue /sore throat. Like every other concerned parent i would rush to the doctor only to come with my child carrying super-strength prescription antibiotics from the pharmacy. It however started to bother me that they were being over prescribed and he was developing dependency on them to recover from the slightest chest infections (And yes, I’m convinced that the repeated use of antibiotics wiped out his system and made him prone to the next infection.).My husband and I had to eventually decide about whether to continue giving our son the drugs which clearly were being over-prescribed or try out natural remedies.
The next time we decided to hold off on the antibiotics and he turned the corner without using any antibiotics. He was feeling much better and in great health .It was touch and go all day, watching his fever, his mood, his pain threshold.I felt a little guilty tossing out the antibiotics, but I’d rather feed the trash than my little guy.
What are classified as chest infections ?
Chest disorders include
- Cardiac/Heart infections
- Upper respiratory infections
- Esophagus / throat disorders
- Common colds and flue’s
- Chest congestion
- other lung disorders
Why repeated use of antibiotics is not good for us and our children?
While antibiotics certainly have their uses, taking them when unnecessary can be harmful in many ways. Here’s a summary of the negatives:
- Increased resistance to antibiotics
- Diarrhea and digestive problems
- Reduction in beneficial phytoestrogens
- Impaired immunity, especially in children and the critically ill
- Long-term changes in gut micro flora
The long term use of antibiotics have serious side effects on our health and immunity , when taken long term they can cause us more harm than good .
Unfortunately it was also discovered that using one type of antibiotic (such as penicillin or tetracycline) increases the resistance of bacteria to other types of antibiotics as well. The old idea of switching to a different antibiotic to avoid resistance doesn’t seem so good after all.
Antibiotics kill bacteria, not viruses. Nonetheless, many doctors prescribe antibiotics for childhood illnesses that are viral, meaning that antibiotics are unlikely to have any effect.
Simply put, the overuse of antibiotics destroys the delicate balance of healthy vs. unhealthy bacteria in the gut.Its dangerous to rely on antibiotics because antibiotics stop working when bacteria come up with various ways of countering these actions, such as:
- Preventing the antibiotic from getting to its target When you really don’t want to see someone, you might find yourself doing things like hiding from them or avoiding their phone calls. Bacteria employ similar strategies to keep antibiotics at bay. One effective way to keep a drug from reaching its target is to prevent it from being taken up at all. Bacteria do this by changing the permeability of their membranes or by reducing the number of channels available for drugs to diffuse through. Another strategy is to create the molecular equivalent of a club bouncer to escort antibiotics out the door if it gets in.
- Changing the target Many antibiotics work by sticking to their target and preventing it from interacting with other molecules inside the cell. Some bacteria respond by changing the structure of the target (or even replacing it within another molecule altogether) so that the antibiotic can no longer recognize it or bind to it.
- Destroying the antibiotic This tactic takes interfering with the antibiotic to an extreme. Rather than simply pushing the drug aside or setting up molecular blockades, some bacteria survive by neutralizing their enemy directly.
Taking Antibiotics Safely
So what should you do when your child gets sick? To minimize the risk of bacterial resistance, keep these tips in mind:
- Take antibiotics only for bacterial infections. It’s a good idea to let milder illnesses (especially those thought to be caused by viruses) run their course. This helps prevent antibiotic-resistant germs from developing. But leave it to your doctor to decide if an illness is “mild” or not. Even if the symptoms don’t get worse but do last a while, take your child to the doctor.
Lower your child’s antibiotic prescriptions with these five simple steps
The most important step you can take toward reducing antibiotic use in your children is preventing the need for them in the first place. Here are five key steps you can take to do that:
- Feed them a nutrient-dense, whole foods diet to reduce the likelihood, frequency, and severity of childhood infections.
- Have your children wash their hands frequently to reduce their exposure to infectious germs. A good habit to get into is washing hands just after they get home from school or other outings, in addition to the typical times (before meals, after using the bathroom, etc.).
- Give them supplemental nutrients that can prevent or shorten the duration of infections
- Encourage their consumption of fermented foods and fermentable fiber to support gut health, and consider supplemental probiotics and prebiotics.
- Consider natural remedies that can shorten the duration of viral infections, improve immunity, and provide symptom relief.
Natural remedies i vouch for.
If I’ve learned one thing, it’s that it’s much better to be prepared for the sicknesses and pains before they arrive rather when your child is already in pain.
Allow me to help. Here’s what I wish I would have had on hand in preparation for the bad days . You can choose those that you feel your child can take depending on the age for example some toddlers cannot chew garlic because of the risk of choking .
- Honey, cinnamon and ginger for cold
Never go for allopathic medicines if you get a cold or cough. This remedy is very effective for the cold you get in winter. You can prepare ginger tea at home that you can drink few times a day. Make green tea with fresh ginger and cinnamon added to it.
Dry cough home remedies
Chew some spices like ginger or garlic cloves. Make a mixture of ginger, lemon, honey and have it a few times a day. Chewing garlic would also help reduce a dry cough problem.
Camphor and coconut oil for chest congestion
Heat camphor in coconut oil. Apply this oil on your chest and back. You will be relieved of your cold. This remedy is very effective for kids. For kids apply oil on chest, back and under the feet.
Milk and garlic – this is the one for all remedy .
Milk and garlic may sound like an odd combination, but its effects are amazing. Actually, Garlic Milk is a drink that functions as a medicine and is great for your overall health.
Learn how to prepare this effective drink and some of its health benefits. http://wp.me/p879sZ-gH
Health & Fitness Junkie !