The Antibiotics Battle: What if We Lose?

| December 5, 2013 |

two girls sick in bed




We are fighting a war, a war that very few people even realize is going on. Over time, our overvaccination of viruses and the use of different medicines to combat evolving strains of bacteria has created superbacteria, viruses that have become immune to a variety of medicinal treatments. There may come a day where we can no longer effectively combat a variety of bacteria, due to the increasing tendency for these bacteria to evolve to fight off these treatments. What will happen to our society if this is to happen?

Common Illnesses

In general, if we lose the antibiotics battle to superbacteria and superviruses, our society may return to a level of medicinal treatment akin to centuries ago. The most notable change begins with common illness, such as the common cold, flu, sore throats and headaches. It is entirely possible that these type of ailments will become much more dangerous than they are right now.

Like their effect in the 18th century, these illnesses may leave a person bedridden or even completely unable to fight against the sickness they have. This will be heightened even more with superviruses; because of the rate at which these bacteria develop and mutate, the symptoms associated with them will become more serious. It will become increasingly vital to avoid getting sick in any aspect if antibiotics become useless.

Infections

One of the most important things that we use antibiotics for is to treat infection. An infection in a human being occurs when an open wound is exposed to outside bacteria, which spreads and attacks the immune system. Infection can come from a variety of ailments, from a broken bone that breaks the skin to a small scratch. In general, any injury that breaks the skin is susceptible to infection. If even the most common antibiotics become obsolete, it will be extremely difficult to treat broken skin for infections. This will make avoiding injury, even the smallest cuts, vital in a survival situation.

Surgeries

Believe it or not, most surgeries rely on the use of antibiotics in order to treat various disorders or issues that may arise in the surgical process. Most of these are used to combat infection and to kill any foreign bacteria that may enter the body cavity during a surgery. However, this will not be possible if antibiotics are no longer able to combat these bacteria and viruses. All surgeries, including appendectomies, the removal of tumors, exploratory surgery, and caesarian sections for pregnant women will all become potentially life threatening without the use of antibiotics.

If antibiotics are ever proven to be obsolete due to the human tendency to overprescribe medications, which leads to superviruses and bacteria, it will be important to be prepared. Daily life will become a much more dangerous prospect, with people attempting to avoid risky situations that may lead to injury. People will need to try to prevent themselves from getting sick, which can become a deadly prospect at any time. Even if we lose the antibiotics battle, we can still be prepared to combat this situation.

Category: Science

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