Why Can’t I get an Antibiotic syrup for Child?
Nothing more frustrating than having a sick child and feeling helpless. Here is why you might not leave the doctor’s office with a prescription? Today I will focus here briefly, Why can’t I get an antibiotic syrup for a child?
You work up and your baby had a fever. You knew it was coming because she barely ate any of her dinners the night before. Now here you are, on a Friday afternoon (because that is when they ALWAYS get sick) sitting in the waiting room, imagining an army of germs marching your way.
Your toddler, well she is red-faced and obviously ill – with a trickle of a runny nose just starting. Maternal worry sets in and all you want are something, anything, to make her well again. Next up is a visit with the doctor.
You secretly wish that the room smelled like Lysol rather than vomit and dirty diapers and wonder if it is even safe to put your baby on the bed. In comes the doctor, with a quick check into the nose, throat, and ears to make sure the illness is nothing obvious.
If you’re really lucky, you may even get a strep or flu test, which would at least get you a prescription. Then the doctor says the three little words that you don’t want to hear. “It’s a virus!” Cringe.
You were already pretty sure that whatever it was, was viral because they had the typical strawberry tongue with red little patches speckled all over it.
So as you are sent on your way with a few photocopies of how to care for your baby when he or she is sick, you pay your co-pay and head home empty-handed. Except for a pinch from the pocketbook and the fear of more illnesses to come, you can do nothing but wait it out.
For new parents, this can be shocking. You automatically assume that if your child has a fever and a runny nose that they have a cold. You also assume that they will be given an antibiotic syrup for the child. A decade ago, this may have been the case.
However today, under strict guidelines from the CDC fewer pediatricians are handing our antibiotics for things like colds or other viruses. The reason your doctor diligently checked the obvious ears, nose, and throat is that they would be able to spot an infection right away.
When those three areas of your child’s anatomy don’t appear to be infected, doctors assume that it is something viral.
The truth is that antibiotics don’t work on a virus. They also don’t work on the flu. They will not prevent your child from getting sicker and are only useful if an infection is present in the body.
The overuse of antibiotics years ago had a residual effect on pediatric healthcare and led to antibiotic misuse that caused many to be ineffective against infectious bacteria.
Viral illnesses can mimic bacterial infections. And it is true that a viral infection that doesn’t receive adequate home care or doesn’t seem to dissipate quickly can lead to a secondary infection that may involve the ears, sinuses, chest, throat, or lungs.
This is one reason that you should go back to the doctor if the fever lasts more than 7 days. In this case, your doctor will prescribe antibiotics.
While it is frustrating to leave the doctor’s office with nothing more than, “it’s a virus,” it is important to understand that giving an antibiotic syrup for the child when they don’t need them is a dangerous thing.
This can cause them to become immune when they really need it to fight off a bacterial infection. It also compromises their immunity. Sure, it may make you feel better to have the antibiotic on hand in the hopes of getting your child well faster.
Yet the truth remains that allowing the virus to run its course, and providing great home care to help prevent secondary infections – will actually be in the best interest of your child.