The Rise of the Superbugs

An epidemic of antibiotic resistance is sweeping across the globe and taking thousands of lives yet somehow very few people have even heard of the threat

So, what actually is Antibiotic resistance? The World Health Organization says that: “Antibiotics are medicines used to prevent and treat bacterial infections. Antibiotic resistance occurs when bacteria change in response to the use of these medicines.” This basically means that Bacteria have adapted to survive Antibiotic treatments.

Bacteria are now developing resistance at an alarming rate and this puts many medical procedures at risk, many surgeries could become too risky to perform due to a risk of infection. It is predicted that in 2050 there will be 10 million deaths from antibiotic-resistant bacterial infections, that’s more than the predicted deaths for cancer.

The important question is, what can we do about it? It may seem like a problem out of our hands but actually its a problem on our hands. Poor hand hygiene is responsible for a large amount of the spread of bacteria; if we can prevent resistant bacteria from spreading we can save countless lives and all it takes is soap and water.

It’s hardly surprising that bacteria spread so easily on human hands, 15% of men don’t wash their hands after going to the toilet compared to 7% of women and those that do wash their hands only spend an average of 6 seconds doing so.

To help you get involved in the fight against superbugs, here is a list of five changes to your daily life to keep the bacteria at bay:

Listen to your doctor!

If your doctor says you don’t need antibiotics, you don’t need them, don’t go seeking them elsewhere. Your doctor knows what they’re talking about, you can trust them!

Finish your course of antibiotics

If you’re prescribed antibiotics make sure to finish the course even if you feel better. Not finishing the course gives surviving bacteria the opportunity to develop resistance.

Keep your hands clean!

Washing your hands regularly can stop bacteria spreading.

Source EcoWatch

Maintain good personal hygiene

There are more creatures living on your body than there are people on earth! Do you want to be host to millions of bacteria?

Use antibacterial products to a minimum/only when appropriate

It may seem strange but using antibacterial products regularly provides the perfect conditions for bacteria to develop a resistance. Regular soap acts as a natural antibiotic and alcohol hand sanitizers are recommended by Dr Michael Bell of the CDC