Antibiotics are a class of medications that are used to treat bacterial infections. They work by killing or slowing the growth of bacteria that cause infections. Antibiotics are not effective against viral infections, such as the common cold or flu.
There are many different types of antibiotics, including penicillins (Amoxicillin) , cephalosporins, macrolides (Azithromycin), tetracyclines (Doxycycline) , and fluoroquinolones (Ciprofloxacin). Each type of antibiotic works in a slightly different way and is effective against different types of bacteria.
Antibiotics are typically prescribed by a healthcare professional and should be taken exactly as directed. It is important to finish the entire course of antibiotics, even if symptoms improve before the medication is finished. This helps to ensure that all of the bacteria are eliminated and reduces the risk of antibiotic resistance.
Common side effects of antibiotics can include upset stomach, diarrhea, and yeast infections. More serious side effects can also occur, such as severe allergic reactions or damage to the liver or kidneys. It is important to talk to a healthcare professional about any potential risks and side effects of antibiotics.
It is also important to use antibiotics responsibly to help prevent the development of antibiotic-resistant bacteria. This means only using antibiotics when they are needed, taking them exactly as directed, and not sharing antibiotics with others.