LIFE 9/9

November 25, 2023

Gauteng residents urged to avoid excessive use of antibiotics

Gauteng Residents warned to avoid excessive intake of antibiotics

The 18 to 24 of November marked World Antimicrobial Week and residents of the Gauteng were urged to refrain from excessively consuming antibiotics.


The Department of Health explained that misuse of antibiotics leads to resistance which makes it difficult to treat common illnesses such as tuberculosis, pneumonia and sexually transmitted diseases. Department's spokesperson Motalatale Modiba said: "The Gauteng Department of Health wishes to make a call to the public to avoid abusing antibiotics as this has long-term effects in terms of the management of infections. It makes infections harder to fix and it makes other medical procedures and surgeries much riskier." According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the worrying rise in antibiotic resistance is one of the top global public health and development threats. Modiba said this is due to a large number of people incorrectly using antibiotics to try to cure viral infections such as flu, sinusitis, viral pharyngitis and bronchitis amongst others as well as not completing their antibiotic treatment regime when diagnosed with bacterial infections.


According to Mayo Clinic, antibiotics are medicines that fight infections caused by bacteria in humans and animals by either killing the bacteria or making it difficult for the bacteria to grow and multiply. They play a vital role in the management of bacterial infections, reducing morbidity and preventing mortality. However, the extensive use has resulted in drug resistance that threatens to reverse the life-saving power of these medicines. In addition, the public is urged to vaccinate to prevent and cure viral infections. They are also encouraged to follow these principles to curb antimicrobial resistance by washing their hands frequently, completing antibiotic treatment regimes when treating infections, continuing with HIV and or Tuberculosis treatment to prevent drug resistance and not insisting on or agreeing to be prescribed antibiotics when diagnosed with a viral infection like colds and flu.

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