We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.
Advertiser Disclosure
Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.
How We Make Money
We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently of our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

How Beneficial Are Antibiotics for Infection?

By Madeleine A.
Updated May 17, 2024
Our promise to you
WiseGeek is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At WiseGeek, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject-matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

Antibiotics for infection are effective if the infection is bacterial in nature. Viral infections do not respond to antibiotics and therefore, antibiotics are not considered effective treatments in managing viral infections. Antibiotics for infection can be administered orally, topically, or intravenously. Certain skin infections respond to over-the-counter antibiotic ointments, however, if the infection is severe, an oral antibiotic may be recommended. Types of infections that typically respond well to antibiotics include upper and lower respiratory infections, urinary tract infections, and ear infections.

Since viral infections do not respond to antibiotics, self-care methods of treatment are often necessary. These include resting, drinking plenty of fluids, and eating a healthy diet. Taking an over-the-counter pain and fever reducer also can help relieve muscle aches, fever, sore throat, and headache. A sore throat can either be caused a viral or bacterial infection, and to determine the cause, the health care provider frequently takes a swabbing of the throat. If the sore throat is found to be caused by strep or other bacteria, antibiotics will generally be prescribed.

When taking antibiotics for infection, people may experience side effects such as stomach pain, diarrhea, and nausea. Although taking antibiotics for infection is generally not problematic, gastrointestinal symptoms can be so troublesome that the person stops his treatment. Discontinuing the use of antibiotics for infection should not be considered unless discussed with the health care provider. If discontinuing treatment is deemed appropriate, the health care provider can then recommend an alternative treatment plan.

The most common types of antibiotics for infection include penicillins, fluoroquinolones, cephalosporins, macrolides, and sulfonamides. Tetracyclines and aminoglycosides are also commonly prescribed antibiotics for infection, however, each antibiotic is generally only effective against certain infections. If, for example, the individual has strep throat, the health care provider with select the antibiotic that most effectively treats the strep bacteria, as opposed to an antibiotic that treats the bacteria responsible for a urinary tract infection.

Allergic reactions can also occur when taking antibiotics for infection. Although most allergic reactions are mild, producing only minor skin reactions, some can be severe. These reactions include difficulty breathing, swelling or closing of the throat, wheezing, and fainting. Reactions such as these are considered medical emergencies and when they occur, the individual needs to seek treatment at the nearest hospital. When minor allergic reactions occur, discontinuation of the antibiotic and an antihistamine typically resolve symptoms in most people.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Discussion Comments
WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.