Poster: Antibiotics Aren’t Always the Answer.
- Antibiotics are life-saving drugs
Using antibiotics wisely is the best way to preserve their strength for future bacterial illnesses.
- Antibiotics only treat bacterial infections
If your child has a viral infection like a cold, talk to a doctor or pharmacist about symptom relief. This may include over-the-counter medicine, a humidifier, or warm liquids.
- Some ear infections DO NOT require an antibiotic
A doctor can determine what kind of ear infection your child has and if antibiotics will help. The doctor may follow expert guidelines to wait for a couple of days before prescribing antibiotics since your child may get better without them.
- Most sore throats DO NOT require an antibiotic
Only 1 in 5 children seen by a doctor for a sore throat has strep throat, which should be treated with an antibiotic. Your child’s doctor can only confirm strep throat by running a test.
- Green colored mucus is NOT a sign that an antibiotic is needed
As the body’s immune system fights off an infection, mucus can change color. This is normal and does not mean your child needs an antibiotic.
- There are potential risks when taking any prescription drug
Antibiotic use can cause complications, ranging from an upset stomach to a serious allergic reaction. Your child’s doctor will weigh the risks and benefits before prescribing an antibiotic.
See Get Smart symptom relief tips & tools for your child or call 1-800-CDC-INFO (232-4636).
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