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Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are largely considered a ‘female problem,’ but men also develop UTIs and the unpleasant symptoms that accompany them.
Whether you’re simply throwing down a blanket in the backyard and enjoying a meal al fresco or tasting exotic fare abroad, food poisoning can turn a good time bad in a hurry. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that each year, approximately one in six Americans (about 48 million people) get sick, 128,000 are hospitalized, and 3,000 die of food-borne diseases.
If you are of a certain age, you probably remember the jealousy induced when another young classmate announced he or she was having his tonsils removed. From the vantage point of an elementary-school student, this meant a few days off and lots of post-surgical ice cream. And several decades ago, tonsillectomy seemed a routine part of childhood.
We’ve all been on antibiotics at some point in our lives, and most parents have given their children antibiotics by the time they go to school. However, physicians are warning that we can no longer afford to be so cavalier about the drugs we once thought were all but harmless bacteria killers. That’s because more and more bacteria are adapting to evade the effects of antibiotics.
People make an effort to hide their tears, while some offer to wipe others’ tears away. But for our eyes, a constant supply of tears is needed to see clearly and comfortably.
Parents have plenty to worry about when their kids go to school or away at camp, and illness is a major concern. Colds, flu, ear infections and strep throat are among the many potential illnesses shared by youngsters in close proximity. However, these infections are rarely life-threatening. Meningitis, on the other hand, is a potentially dangerous communicable disease that can spread through classrooms or dormitories.
Sniffling, sneezing, coughing, wheezing—it’s cold and flu season in St. Louis. It’s called the ‘common cold’ because it is, indeed, perhaps the most common illness experienced by both adults and children each year.
When seasonal sniffles and coughs arrive, it’s tempting to call the doctor and ask for a prescription of good, old-fashioned antibiotics to make it all better. But antibiotics are the wrong treatment for colds, flu, bronchitis, most ear infections and other common viral ailments. In fact, taking antibiotics for anything other than a bacterial infection can cause serious harm.
About 50 miles southeast of St. Louis rests a small Illinois village with a deep-rooted German heritage—dating back to 1834—called St. Libory. Almost 100 years later, John Wenneman purchased a small meat shop in 1927, which became the Wenneman Meat Co.—completely unaware of the legacy he had created, not only for his family and St. Libory proper, but for the region as a whole.
No parent likes to see his or her child feeling miserable. And in children, the common cold can mean a week or two of runny-nosed, cough-induced, scratchy-throated misery. But even though we long to do something to make everything OK again, curing kids’ colds primarily requires time and a little TLC.
Among the illnesses that spread through elementary classrooms like wildfire, conjunctivitis— commonly known as pinkeye—is one of the most common. That’s because this usually viral infection is highly contagious, and it’s hard to prevent children from rubbing an irritated eye and then spreading the virus to another child via direct contact or shared items.
Growing up, Dr. Julia Young witnessed firsthand the juggling act her father, Dr. Paul H. Young, a well-known neurosurgeon, performed as both a doctor and a parent. It showed her how balance could be found. “He was always so busy, but he found time to do the normal ‘dad things,’ too,” she says. “He’s a great example of how you can have both a professional and very healthy personal life.”
Ear piercing may seem to be among the most innocuous of body alterations, and in most cases it is a simple procedure without complications. However, there are some risks and basic precautions to be aware of.
Contrary to popular opinion, ulcers of the gastrointestinal tract are not caused by stress or spicy foods. Instead, a bacterial infection or popping too many over-the-counter anti-inflammatory drugs may result in the burning stomach pain typical of peptic ulcers.
Just thinking about it makes you itchy: Head lice—the scourge of school nurses near and far. Bristol Elementary School in the Webster Groves School District, like other schools across the country, provides parents with a three-page information packet about the symptoms, transmission, diagnosis and treatment of head lice. Information included notes that the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that no healthy child be excluded from or allowed to miss school because of head lice and that ‘no nit’ policies for return to school are to be discouraged. Nits are the eggs that can be found on the hair shaft near the scalp. They hatch into nymphs, the immature lice that feed on human blood but cannot yet reproduce. Within 12 days, nymphs develop into adult lice, which can survive for up to a month on the scalp. They are about the size of a sesame seed, and are tan to grayish-white in color.
Offer any child a choice between a piece of yummy, all-natural chocolate, or a serving of lactobacillus and bifidobacterium, and watch how quickly they reach for the candy jar. But if the cute little candy jar has a babyflakes label on the front, everybody’s happy, because the premium chocolates are tasty and healthy, providing healthy probiotics in every serving.
Women are special: Some of the things that make us so are wonderful. Others, not so much. One of the relatively common unpleasantries associated with being female is urinary tract infections (UTIs.)
Well, for a parenting column by a pediatrician, you would think the topic of how to choose a pediatrician would be easy. But there are many more things to consider today than when I started practicing more than 25 years ago. So, while I can offer many tips on this important decision, it is ultimately very personal.
Did I take my medication? Or did I just think about taking it? If you’ve ever been on a prescription, a round of antibiotics, or just tried to stick to a multivitamin, you know this feeling. It sounds like the easiest thing in the world to take your medications as they’re prescribed, but in reality it can be difficult, says Mike Gianino of Homewatch CareGivers, a nonmedical in-home care provider. “Think if you had 10 or 11 different ones,” he adds. “On your best day in the prime of your life, it would be hard to manage. Add 50 years, and it becomes impossible.”
Any structure needs a firm foundation, and no building will stand indefinitely on ground that is eroding away. Such is the case with our teeth and gums. While teeth get a lot of cosmetic attention, it’s the gums that play a critical role in ensuring those beautiful pearly whites stay where they belong.
Passport? Check. Boarding pass? Check. Photo ID? Check. Vaccinations? Oops!
It starts like the common cold: You have a runny nose and a slight fever. After a few days, the coughing starts—and it seems like it will never stop. The Chinese call it ‘the cough of 100 days.’
The 15-year-old girl just wanted her upper ear pierced, like all her friends. Her mom didn’t think twice; in fact, she even considered following suit. But a week later, her daughter’s ear began to swell and she was put on antibiotics. The next day, the swelling was worse and the ear about twice its size. At the emergency room, the fluid was drained from the ear and it deflated like a balloon. All the cartilage had been eaten away by the very virulent bacteria that required IV antibiotics for six weeks to clear up. Plastic surgery restored only partial normalcy.
There are many occasions during which we might need a handy excuse for, well, opting out of one activity or another. This is especially true around the holidays, when we find ourselves deluged by invitations from friends, neighbors and family members. It may be hard to believe, but some of us simply don’t relish the idea of getting into themed clothing and working the room with spiked eggnog in one hand and Little Smokies in the other. For them, my advice is as follows: Have a plausible excuse ready at all times. Below are some you can work with.
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