It is quite understandable that when your little one is sick you start feeling anxious. You will surely be eager to get rid of the sickness by giving your child some medicines, most probably, antibiotics. Most parents believe that antibiotics will help in treating all illnesses including common cold. But do antibiotics actually work for curing common colds? Do you want to know the truth?
The truth is that there is no point in taking antibiotics for colds.
Why is it so? It is because antibiotics work on bacteria and not on viruses. It is a known fact that common cold is caused by virus. So, it goes without saying that antibiotics don’t work for common cold.
Are you surprised? Did you believe that antibiotics are universal remedies to treat everything? In reality, it is not so. They are not effective on viruses.
Why are antibiotics not effective on viruses?
The structure of virus is different from bacteria. Bacteria have cell walls that are attacked by antibiotics to kill them. Viruses do not have cell walls. Instead they have a protective protein coat that cannot be attacked by antibiotics.
Bacteria and viruses attack your body in different ways. Bacteria attack your body from outside. Virus moves into your cells and live in them.
Bacteria reproduce on their own. On the other hand viruses cannot reproduce on their own. Instead they make copies of themselves to create new viruses.
What is wrong about taking antibiotics for cold?
When you take antibiotics when they are not needed, your body develops resistance to them. When you do need antibiotics to treat a serious infection, they will not be effective. Taking antibiotics when they are not needed increases the risk of side effects as well.
If antibiotics won’t work, then what else will work for cold?
Why don’t you just wait for your body’s immune system to take care of the virus that caused the cold? Just take it easy. Take rest and drink plenty of hot fluids. Go for home remedies. If the cold is persistent and lasts longer than usual, you should consult your doctor.