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Antibiotics

Our body is constantly being invaded by foreign organisms. The body’s own immune system is the first line of defense. However, sometimes an illness occurs despite our body’s best efforts. Bacteria continually grow and multiply by dividing. If an infection occurs due to bacteria, a doctor may prescribe an antibiotic drug.

Some antibiotics are synthetically produced, but most are made from other bacteria or organisms. Antibiotics kill the bacteria that cause infections. They do not work on viruses.

There are several ways antibiotics kill bacteria, each way is aimed at stopping how the bacteria grow. One way is to attack the cell wall of the bacteria while it is attempting to grow and divide. Some antibiotics bind to enzymes that are necessary for the bacteria to build the cell wall, preventing it from developing normally. The weakened wall prevents additional cell growth, plus it allows fluid to flood into the bacteria causing it to burst.

Antibiotic resistance develops when antibiotics are prescribed too frequently and when the full dose or prescription is not followed.