Antibiotic Resistance

Antibiotic Resistance

What causes antibiotic resistance?
The main reasons of antibiotic resistance include:

  1. The use of antibiotics incorrectly, for example in the treatment of a cold.
  2. The incorrect taking of antibiotics. Not taking antibiotics as directed or for their prescribed length of time.
  3. The misuse of antibiotics in the farming industry.

    What does antibiotic resistance mean?
    Antibiotics have had a role in the treatment of infectious diseases since the 1940’s. They have significantly improved our quality of life and our length of life. They have allowed us to treat diseases that we were previously unable to treat. Now with antibiotic resistance, bacterial infections are becoming harder to treat.

    What can we do?
    There are things that we can do. They include good health hygiene, prevention and appropriate antibiotic prescribing and use.


    • Immunisation! By immunising against disease it means we don’t need to treat the disease
    • Good hand washing
    • Covering your nose and mouth when coughing and sneezing
    • Staying home when unwell.

    Antibiotic use

    • Taking antibiotics as directed and for the prescribed length of time

    One of the more interesting stories my father told me about his childhood was when he was 10, he became unwell with scarlet fever. At the time scarlet fever had a mortality rate between 3-30% depending on the country you were born in. He was the first person in his family to be given this wonderful new drug, penicillin. Antibiotics have made a significant impact on our health and longer living, let’s see if we can give this wonder drug a longer life!


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