Autism

According to WHO Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) refers to a range of conditions characterised by some degree of impaired social behaviour, communication and language, and a narrow range of interests and activities that are both unique to the individual and carried out repetitively. A certain set of behaviours defines Autism. It is a “spectrum-condition” that affects people differently and to varying degrees. There is no known cause of Autism. Early diagnosis helps the individual to receive help and support required to lead a quality life. It causes problems functioning in the society. Children often show symptoms in the first year. However sometimes children appear to develop normally in the first year and then go through a period of regression between 18 and 24 months when they develop Autism symptoms.

It is estimated that 1 in every 160 children have autism worldwide. The prevalence of ASD appears to be increasing globally. Environment and genetics are believed to be the primary causes of Autism. Intervention is required in the early years to tackle autism. For the optimal development and well being of a child with autism, routine monitoring of child development, maternal and child health care is required. There is no cure for autism. However evidence-based psychological interventions such as behavioural treatment and skills training programmes for parents and caregivers reduces the difficulties in communication and social behaviour. The complex health-care needs of people with ASD require a wide range of integrated services like health promotion, care, rehabilitation services and collaboration with other sectors like education, employment and social care.

Some of the signs and symptoms to look for in early infancy are reduced eye contact, lack of response to their name and indifference to care givers. Some children may have normal development in the early years and then become withdrawn or aggressive. They may also lose language skills that they had already developed. Sings are usually seen by the age of 2 years. Each child with autism spectrum disorder is likely to have a unique pattern of behaviour and level of severity, from low to high functioning. Some children have difficulty learning and lower IQ. However, some may have high intelligence and learn quickly yet have trouble communicating and applying their knowledge in everyday life and adjusting to situations. It is often seen that children with ASD use a singsong or robotic voice to communicate, does not understand simple sentences, questions and directions, is expressionless with emotions and feelings, inappropriately approaches a social situation with passive-aggressiveness or disruptiveness, has difficulty understanding non-verbal cues such as understanding facial expressions, body postures or tone of voice. They often perform repetitive movements such as rocking, spinning or hand flapping, self-harming activities such as head-banging and biting.

As they get older some children to become more engaged and show fewer disturbances in behaviour. Others with severe conditions will continue to have difficulty in social skills and the teen years would bring in worse behavioural and emotional problems.

If you’re concerned about your child’s development or you suspect that your child may have autism spectrum disorder, discuss your concerns with your doctor. The symptoms associated with the disorder can also be linked with other developmental disorders.

Epilepsy: Is there a cure?

The diagnosis of epilepsy comes with numerous questions like whether it will be cured, or whether there is any specific drug available to treat it. Doctors claim that there are hundreds of different epilepsy syndromes, which involves many different types of seizures. Therefore pinpointing a particular kind of treatment for epilepsy is very difficult.

Epilepsy may be inherited or it may not. Some people also inherit an abnormally active version of a gene that is resistant to drugs. This is the reason why people sometimes have a hard time controlling their seizures with medication. Even if the seizures look different, they all start at the same place. However, they cannot be treated in the same way.  All of them start in the brain. They are caused by a sudden change in the way the brain cells send electrical signals back and forth. A doctor has to have an accurate diagnosis of the exact type of epilepsy a person has in order to treat it properly.

For most people seizures are controlled through medication. However, for some people, there is no proper response to the medication. If the seizures continue despite all the efforts, specialized surgery may be the answer. All surgeries entail some risk but fortunately for epilepsy surgeries, the risks are low. Surgery in epilepsy contributes to a far better way of life.

There are various other treatment options available for epilepsy, they are:

Dietary changes: It refers to a strict meal plan to help children whose seizures are not controlled by medicine. It involves close working with the doctor and a dietician. It starts out with a fast that lasts 24 to 48 hours. The patient is usually admitted to the hospital for this span of time so that they can be observed. After that, they are required to have foods that are high in fat and low in carbohydrates.

Vagus Nerve Stimulation (VNS): A VNS is surgically placed in the chest that delivers short bursts of energy to the brain. It works a lot like a pacemaker. Scientists have found that a VNS reduces seizures by 40% to 50%. However, it does not work this effectively for everyone.

Responsive Neurostimulation Device (RNS): This treatment method consists of a small neurostimulator implanted under the scalp and within the skull. The neurostimulator is connected to one or two wires called electrodes. These electrodes are placed where the seizures are expected to originate within the brain or the surface of the brain. The device detects abnormal electrical activity in the area and delivers electrical stimulation to normalize brain activity before seizure symptoms begin.

Epilepsy makes one feel like they do not have control over their own lives. It is important to work in partnership with the doctor, be updated about any kind of information, like about the seizures or the side effects of the medication and ask questions. There are many ways to get help and maintain a happy, healthy and productive life.

The simple prescription to beating #COVID-19 -Social Distancing

The simple prescription to beating #COVID-19 -Social Distancing

Pandemonium. From panic buying to end of the world conspiracies. The internet is full of conjectures about the Coronavirus. While some downplay it by saying ‘it is a regular flu’ to some predicting the ‘death of millions’ and calling it a ‘plague’. There is just too much misinformation floating around. It is rightly being called an ‘infodemic one is bound to feel easily overwhelmed.

At the very outset, let’s make one thing clear. While it would be irresponsible to say that the Coronavirus is a regular flu.  But it isn’t a death sentence either. The World Health Organisation (WHO) and multiple other health organizations have tried to persuade everyone to not panic, but it has done little to calm the mass.

What is a pandemic? Does Pandemic mean deathly?

NO. Pandemic means the sustained and continuous transmission of the disease, simultaneously in more than three different geographical regions. Pandemic does not refer to the lethality of a virus but to its transmissibility and geographical extension.

Why should one not panic?

The recovery rate is promising: So far, the world has seen 246,760 cases of COVID-19, out of which the death toll has been 10,062. While the total number of recoveries seen, add up to 88,488.  Other diseases like Smallpox, Influenza, Cholera, Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS), and Plague have had a much higher death count than that of COVID-19. The point is not to underplay the severity, but to explain that if controlled in time, we could very well stop the spread of the virus.

The solution is simple: While there is no vaccination right now, doctors and scientists are working tirelessly to ensure we find a cure. But in the meantime, there is a simple solution. To keep away from people who might be sick. The constant reminder by the medical professionals and health institutes is to self-quarantine and practice social distancing. The need of the hour is to understand that it can happen to anybody, and the only way to keep ourselves safe is by seclusion.

Prepare, not panic. That’s the mantra. We can all go about our daily lives once this is over. The good news is that we know what COVID-19 is and how it presents. The recovery rate is about 80% or even higher. In fact, most patients show mild or no symptoms. A 14-21 day quarantine is all that’s needed.

Stay by yourself: In an age of high-speed internet, it has never been simpler to keep in touch with family and friends than now. Do not panic. If you are getting anxious you can always call your family no matter where you are.

The virus spreads through contact with the eyes, nose, and mouth: A huge reason why the spread of the virus will be contained is that people have started practicing right-hand hygiene habits. From washing hands for 20 seconds to coughing and sneezing into their elbows and not touching their faces. These habits will go a long way in combating the virus.

The virus dies very easily: Just Soap. That’s all. Regular soap is sufficient to kill the Coronavirus. Washing your hands thoroughly and frequently especially before eating food or touching your face is all that’s needed.

One thing that has become amply clear is that the onus of containing the virus is on each of us. So being truthful is an absolute must. If there is one thing that will help healthcare professionals working everywhere, round the clock, will be complete honesty from patients. Being honest about one’s health, travel history and symptoms is the need of the hour. Thinking about the community and society will minimize the risk of others getting infected. Especially those who have compromised immune systems like cancer patients, children or the elderly.

There are reasons to be optimistic, as there are ways to contain the virus and lessons to learn for the future. Prevention, preparedness, and people can help assuage fears. We are in this together and we can do the right things with calm and protect ourselves.

 Do not worry, if you have any symptoms, track them, if they do not subside contact a doctor. Based on your travel history, potential contact with someone who has tested positive COVID-19 and on the severity of your symptoms. The doctor should be able to guide you to the right channels.

Do not take any drastic measures and do not fall for rumors and false information. To stay informed and prepared is very important.

Indian superfoods you must include in your diet

Superfoods are food that is rich in nutrients and exceptionally beneficial for health and well-being. It’s important to include superfoods in your diet to keep your diet nutrient-dense. They are often associated with food such as broccoli and avocados. In reality, you can find many superfoods in your kitchen at home.

Choose these below Indian superfoods to help improve your health and get rid of toxins from your body:

1. Ghee

Most often dismissed due to its high-fat content, ghee is rich in antioxidants and aids in strengthening the immune system. If consumed on a regular basis, it also improves digestion, promotes brain function and strengthens bones. A single tablespoon a day is all it takes so, add it over your rice, rotis or just about any dish to enjoy all its nutritional benefits.

2. Amla

Commonly known as the Indian gooseberry, Amla is another superfood that helps strengthen the immune system. Along with having strong antioxidising capabilities, the fruit is rich in vitamins and promotes the growth of hair, skin and nails. It is also a natural remedy for those suffering from the common cold, many chronic skin conditions and it even helps regulate blood sugar levels. You can consume this superfruit once a day in the form of juice or chutney.

3. Turmeric

We have been hearing about the medicinal properties of Haldi milk for decades. Turmeric is a detoxifying agent that helps significantly improve cardiovascular health, enhance liver functions and fight inflammations as well. Coming from the root of the Curcuma longa plant, this spice is easy to incorporate into almost any dish and is favourable for the bright yellow colour it adds. Even the West is beginning to catch-up with the health benefits of the Indian spice.

4. Ragi

Highly recommended for diabetics, ragi is a super grain that greatly lends a hand in regulating blood sugar levels. Since it is also rich in iron and vitamin D, it reduces the chances of getting a stroke. Loaded with calcium and fiber, it is the ideal alternative for those who are allergic to gluten and lactose. Adding ragi into your diet will also help with weight loss.

5. Curd

We know curd as a great source of calcium which helps strengthen our bones and muscles. Those who regularly consume curd can also benefit from enhanced digestion and improved cardiovascular health and immunity. It is also a common food for diet plans for weight loss and de-stressing.

6. Jackfruit

For a more nutritious energy boost, go for a jackfruit. Since this superfood can be a fruit, nut and carbohydrate, it is considered a whole meal which can be consumed in place of rice or rotis. It is rich in vitamins, fibre, and phytonutrients that instantly energize your body when consumed. It can also help with weight loss, reduce cholesterol and even beat diabetes. Because of its meat-like tenderness, it is also known as the Indian vegan substitute for meat.

7. Makhanas

Sold in the market as lotus seeds, makhanas are a great healthy snack option to keep around the house. Not only are they low in fat, but they are also rich in protein, iron, zinc and magnesium. Makhanas can also help people de-stress and sleep better. These superfoods are proven to help slow down the ageing process as well.

The Indian superfoods list is a long one and includes many other food items such as drumsticks, daliya and jau. They are very simple to add to your diet and can make a world of difference to your mental, emotional and physical well-being. It’s time to switch to superfoods and get the whole family involved in the routine.

Sugar Epidemic: Why should we cut down on sugar?

Sugar Epidemic: Why should we cut down on sugar?

There is a tremendous rise in the consumption of added sugar in recent years. In this fast-paced world, people do not have time to sit back and pay attention to their health. Common go-to foods like low-fat yogurt, barbeque sauce, ketchup, fruit juice, chocolate milk, granola, coffee, iced tea, protein bars, cereal bars, canned food, breakfast cereal, etc. have added sugar in them. Most of these foods are easily available and are referred to as quick-bites. People with busy schedules are inclined towards them. High consumption of sugar affects the brain, teeth, joints, kidneys, skin, liver and heart. Experts believe that it is the main cause of obesity and type 2 diabetes. Sugar is also an addictive substance. It might create substance dependency in an individual which would result in craving of sugar at any time, especially during times of emotional stress. Often, foods that are marketed with ‘zero sugar’, ‘zero-calorie’ or ‘low-fat’ labels contain more hidden sugars than normal food.

Excess consumption of sugar secrets a huge surge of dopamine in the brain which is a feel-good hormone. Since dopamine gives a feeling of pleasure and goodness, people tend to crave more sugar to experience it again. Sugar also gives a quick burst of energy by raising blood sugar levels. However, when the level drops, people experience a “sugar crash” where a person may feel jittery and anxious. Added sugars are mostly found in candies, doughnuts, and other sweet treats.

The lingering sugar in the teeth from these treats often causes bacterial growth and cavity. Eating lots of sugar causes inflammation in the body that worsens joint pain. Too much sugar in the diet increases the rate of developing rheumatoid arthritis.

 Another effect of inflammation is that it makes the skin age faster. Excess sugar attaches to proteins in the bloodstream and creates harmful molecules called Advanced Glycation End-products (AGEs). These molecules make the skin age faster. They damage the collagen and elastin in the skin; they are protein fibers that keep the skin firm and youthful.

Excess sugar causes Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) which is excess fat build-up in the liver. Non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) is also caused by excess sugar consumption. It is fatty liver inflammation and steatosis which means scarring of the liver. Scarring cuts off the blood supply to the liver. In many cases, this escalates into cirrhosis and would require a transplant.

Extra sugar also increases the secretion of insulin in the bloodstream which might affect the arteries all over the body. The walls get thicker, inflamed and stiff. This causes stress in the heart and damages it over time. Sugar increases the rate of heart diseases, heart attacks, and heart failures. Research shows that people who get 25% of their calories from sugar consumption are twice as likely to die of heart disease.

The pancreas is also affected because of the high intake of sugar, which causes type two diabetes in an individual. Kidneys and body weight are also affected because of high sugar consumption. Chronically high levels of sugar in the bloodstream can make men impotent.

There are a lot of ways to cut down on sugar. Many breakfast cereals are high in sugar. Switching to plain porridge and whole wheat cereal biscuits may prove beneficial. Many foods that taste sweet are surprisingly high in sugar. Ready-made soups, stir-in sauces and ready meals can also be high on sugar. Condiments and sauces such as ketchup may have as much as 23g of sugar in a 100g. In snacks, fruits, unsalted nuts, unsalted rice cakes, oatcakes or homemade plain popcorn are good options when it comes to avoiding sugar. In drinks, fizzy drinks, sweetened juices, squashes, and cordials should be avoided. When it comes to desserts, there should be rules that should be followed. Less sugary desserts include fruits, fresh or frozen, dried or tinned.

Cutting down on sugar in one’s diet promotes a diet balanced and a healthy life. It decreases the rate of susceptibility to diseases.

support system

Support systems, an integral part of recovery from ailments

Providing support to people suffering from illness is a delicate job. It requires patience and empathy. Strong support gives patients a way to process their emotions. The layers of support that are created around the patient should be able to help them to cope with the physical as well as the mental adversities. These support systems can come in many forms like family, faith-based community, neighborhood or support groups. But the most important thing that should be provided to an ailing individual is hope. It is very difficult for people to go on with their pace or strength of belief and endurance after being diagnosed with a life-threatening disease. Most of the time, it takes a toll on mental health even before the ailment presents itself physically.  Support systems and caregivers can provide logistic help as well. Apart from emotional support, caregivers can help family and friends of the patient with practical issues like taking them to appointments and also being present there for help. It is often seen that when one is diagnosed with an ailment, which is serious and incurable, it often leads to disruption of life, work, and relationships.

Having a good support system makes sure that there are people to listen to and depend on. Peer support is one of the most sought after support groups as it consists of people who have gone through similar conditions and hence can help a newly diagnosed person with their inspiring experiences and situations. Patients with a good social support system tend to have better outcomes. People who care for their loved ones or any member of a support group often experience burn out. Therefore it is incredibly important for members of support groups to know how much of themselves they can give. It is important for them to sometimes take a step back and analyze whether the needs of the patient are actually being met or not.

Illness for each individual is a unique experience that they respond to differently. Hence it is important to listen to an individual’s personal choice when taking care of them. Patients react with anxiety, sadness, fear, anger and sometimes also with a façade of nonchalance. Sometimes patients need support and other times they need to be left alone. Therefore their choices must always be understood and respected. Sometimes it’s very difficult for the caregiver to resonate with a terminally ill patient and hence it becomes difficult to help them. In these cases, support groups within the community can help a lot. Support systems can provide help with referral visits and transition to a hospital, follow-ups, making sure the discharge list focuses on action and not just history, communicating patient’s needs and preferences, identifying problems and intervening to solve them.

An excellent support system can be built if the patient can be convinced to talk to their family and friends and talk about the diagnosis, asking for help and reaching out and connecting with fellow patients and caregivers.

A good support system is needed when it comes to taking care of ailments. Friends and family are always willing to help but they often do not know what to do or how to act. In the midst of a support group, a patient is very likely to find answers and people who can empathize.

What is an MRI ?

What is an MRI - Uses, application, history, relevance in medical science

A Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) uses a strong magnetic field and radio waves to create a detailed image of the organs and tissues within the body. The development of MRI has revolutionized the field of medicine. MRI is a non-invasive and painless procedure. A giant circular magnet surrounds the MRI scanner tube. The magnet creates a strong magnetic field that aligns the protons of hydrogen atoms, which are then exposed to a beam of radio waves. The various protons of the body start spinning because of this and produce a faint signal that is detected by the receiver portion of the MRI scanner. The received information is then processed by a computer to produce an image.

The development of the MRI scanner includes the work of many researchers that contributed towards the discovery of nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR). The early research on the physics of magnetic resonance imaging started in the early 20th century. MR imaging was invented by Paul C. Lauterbur. He developed a mechanism to encode spatial information into an NMR signal using magnetic field gradients in September 1917. In the late 1970s and 1980s Peter Mansfield further refined the techniques used in MR image acquisition and processing.

MRI scanning is used to evaluate organs of the chest and abdomen including heart, liver, biliary tract, kidneys, spleen, pancreas, and adrenal glands, pelvic organs including the bladder and the reproductive organs such as the uterus and ovaries in females and the prostate glands in the males. MR angiography can also be done to detect abnormalities in the blood vessels with the help of an MRI scanner. Conditions such as tumors, cirrhosis, abnormalities of the bile ducts and pancreas, Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, heart problems and congenital heart problems, a fetus can be examined to diagnose or monitor treatment. Anomalies of the brain, joints, back knees, and spinal cord, breast cancer, fibroids and endometriosis, uterine problems and infertility in women can also be accurately diagnosed with the help of an MRI scan.

Some of the side-effects of MRI are headaches, nausea, pain or burning at the point of injection that arises from the contrast dye. Allergy to the contrast is also seen in a few people that can cause hives and itchiness. Claustrophobia may also be experienced by people who are uncomfortable in closed spaces.

MRI technology is always expanding in scope and use. Scientists are developing newer MRI scanners that are smaller, portable devices. They can be useful for detecting infections and tumors of the soft tissues of the hands, feet, elbows and knees. These new applications of MRI scanners are being medically tested.

3 Ways to Deal With Stress

Gone are the days where we would have to wait for hours in a queue to order food, book a cab or tickets. We have come along way. Everything is just a click away. Which has made our lives a lot easier, but stressed at the same time. But life isn’t just ordering food or taking a trip across Europe. Mental Health and Stress Management are a huge concern we see nowadays.

Everyone we know of is dealing with stress. How do we get away with it?

Here are 3 ways of dealing with modern-day problems:

1. FOMO: Fear of Missing Out

Traveling, NYE parties, clubbing, social media (Instagram worthy pictures), Netflix and a lot of other things one could do over a weekend or on a daily basis and because we have so many options we tend to feel left out most of the time.

Your colleague/friend seems to be traveling very often and you wish to do it too, but you can’t. You either don’t get time or have way too many responsibilities.

Which stresses you out.

You can’t help but wonder how can your colleague/friend do it and you can’t. You can feel the stress building up within you. Or let’s say you always wanted to go to one of those NYE Parties, but never could. Whatever it may be, you don’t have to feel left out. While others can go on a fancy Europe trip or attend an NYE Party, there are other things you could do. Feeling left out on New Year’s Eve? Bring the party home. Call home your friends or you could just enjoy with your family.

Want to travel the world? Start with a place near you, which would not cost you much and you could make it over the weekend. We should be glad the other person can do it or is doing it. You can do a lot of other stuff.

Small things make a big difference!

2. Competition

Sharma Ji ka beta is doing way better in life than you and your parents can’t stop talking about him?

I think we all have been compared to someone or the other while we were growing up.

There is always someone who is doing better than you and that’s fine. You are doing your best and you should be proud of yourself.

There are times where we tend to compete with someone at work or a friend who is at a much better place in life than you are. Putting up a competition with someone is never going to do you good. Be happy for the person. If you feel sad or stressed about your growth. Then, set some goals for yourself and keep working on achieving them. Competition is not going to help you reduce stress. It’s just going to add on.

3. Work-Life Balance

Getting the perfect work-life balance is stressful. Taking back work home and walking into the office with your personal problems is what we see happen all the time. The best way to get the perfect work-life balance is to keep your professional and personal life out of one another’s way. Don’t take your professional life when you enter the home. You need to cut off from work to keep your mind healthy.  The same goes for your personal life. Don’t walk into the office with your personal problems.

You can always check up at home during your break, but otherwise, your focus should be on your work.

These are the most talked-about modern-day problems with ways to keep stress at bay. Now that you know how to deal with these problems, do try them out and let us know your experience in the comments section below.

The physical benefits of being in love

The physical benefits of being in love

It’s that time of the year again, where love is in the air and might even be knocking at our doors. We know that love does wonders for those in love, but did you know that being in love has a lot of health benefits as well? The physical health benefits of love last much longer than the honeymoon phase and help you live a healthier life in the long run.

Human beings are wired for connection and a healthy relationship can have immense rewards. Here’s why you should consider opening the door the next time love knocks:

1. Love makes you take better care of yourself

In a healthy relationship, you look after your partner as well as yourself. Both parties take care of each other by encouraging healthier behaviors. A partner can motivate you to quit smoking, cut down on drinking and develop safer habits in its place. It is likely that your partner might be one of the only few people who will notice a suspicious mole or be honest with you about your hygiene.  In love, you owe it to your partner to look after yourself because your partner is doing the same for you

2. Love helps you live longer

Studies have shown that people in loving relationships live longer lives. This can be attributed to the constant social and emotional support, adherence to medical care and having a partner who helps you to stay away from bad behavior. Associated with better health, a healthy relationship reduces the chances of early death.

3. Love boosts your immune system

Feeling loved can provide a powerful lift to your immune system. Support systems are proven to be useful, especially in healing processes. Research has shown that those in strong and healthy relationships can help avert the cold and flu and help injuries heal quicker. Experiencing genuine care from a loved one helps increase the release of your body’s natural antibody to help fight germs.

4. Love helps you look younger

Ever heard of a loving glow? It’s the kind of glow that makes you look young and refreshing because you are in love. Those in happy relationships tend to look physically younger. The consistently increasing blood flow to the skin gives your skin cells just the right amount of nutrients and oxygen needed to look young and beautiful. Moreover, sleeping next to your partner is proven to help you sleep and we all know what beauty sleep is.

5. Love eases anxiety and reduces stress

Mental and physical health are fundamentally linked together – it is not going to be easy to maintain good physical health with deteriorating mental health. Positive relationships are just what we need to comfort us during times of anxiety and stressful situations. A strong romantic relationship can keep us happy by protecting our bodies from high levels of cortisol, a stress hormone. A loving and stable romance can protect you from anxiety attacks, high blood pressure, strokes, and other cardiovascular diseases.

In truth, it takes a more stable and calmer relationship to truly reap the benefits. If not, you could find yourself in a relationship that can do more harm than good. Keeping these points in mind, we should work towards developing healthy relationships over toxic ones.

Keeping up with antibiotics: Are you a part of the problem?

Let us start with what antibiotics are. Any kind of drug that helps in killing the germs in the body
is technically an antibiotic as the word “antibiotic” means “against life”. So as years passed by,
people have concluded to use antibiotics on any and every illness as a cure. This is one of the
biggest myths that needs to be burst. ANTIBIOTICS ARE MEDICINES THAT WORKS ONLY
AGAINST INFECTIONS CAUSED BY BACTERIA. Antibiotics kill the bacteria in the body or stop
the bacteria from copying or multiplying themselves.

The overuse of antibiotic medication can lead to the bacteria resisting the medication at some
point. This resistance can protect the bacteria from acting against the medication by
neutralizing the effect of medication. Before the 1920s, bacterial infections have caused the
death of many. However, by the 1940s, after the discovery of antibiotics the life expectancy has
increased as the surgeries were less risky. It also helped people to survive deadly infections.

The most important step during an illness is understanding the illness. Determining whether the
infection is viral or bacterial plays a crucial role in the prescription of medicines. We always
have to leave that part to doctors and tests advised by them. Conditions like sinus infections,
sore throats, and respiratory infections can be caused by bacteria or viruses. The “popping a
pill” culture has done a lot of damage to the self-medication trend among us.

Improper use of antibiotics has a lot of side-effects. At some point, antibiotics will start
becoming the villain instead of saving us. This is because the bacterial drugs not only kill the
harmful bacteria but also do damage to the beneficial bacteria which helps us in staying
healthy. Overuse of bacterial drugs leads to antibiotic resistance which risks your health and the
health of the community. Once you pass on the germs to someone, you pass on highly resistant
bacteria which can only be cured with a high dosage of serious medication.

It is highly advisable to go for antibiotic drugs only under doctor prescriptions. Researches are
happening where they even put the duration of antibiotics into question. Never go for
antibiotics until and unless your doctor confirms it to be a bacterial infection. Because the
bacterium that survives an antibiotic treatment is the most harmful as they keep on
reproducing along with passing on its resistant properties to neighbors. The common type of
infection where antibiotics are used are sinus infections, dental infections, skin infections,
meningitis, strep throat, and whooping cough. On the other hand, common cold and flu are
usually caused by viruses. Common side effects of antibiotic overuse are digestive problems,
fungal infections, drug interactions, photosensitivity, tooth, and bone staining. Overuse of bacterial drugs on a serious end can even cause Anaphylaxis, an extremely severe allergic reaction, and clostridium-difficile infection, an infectious diarrheal illness.

It is very important to make wise decisions about medications as it can be a killer than a saver if
it goes wrong. Even when prescribed by the doctor, make sure you never take them for a period
more than what is advised by a doctor. Only go for antibiotics when they are most needed, that
too only with doctor consultation and prescription.