Drugs Cure Illnesses
Drugs are chemical substances that can change how your brain and body work. They can be prescription medicines or illegal drugs. Some drugs cure an illness by killing germs or stopping them from multiplying. Others replace missing chemicals in your body.
Some medicines treat withdrawal symptoms and reduce cravings. Treatment may also include therapies that help you learn healthier ways to cope with problems.
Most people have taken antibiotics at one point or another – for painful strep throat, ear infections and even urinary tract infections. These powerful medicines kill or stop the growth of harmful bacteria.
Before antibiotics were available, many infections were deadly. Thankfully, since antibiotics were introduced in the 1920s, life expectancy has increased and surgeries have become safer.
Antibiotics aren’t just pills – they also come in creams, ointments and solutions for the eyes and ears. Injections and intravenous (IV) antibiotics can also help treat more serious infections.
It’s important to use antibiotics correctly. Overuse of these drugs increases the chances that bacteria will become resistant to them. This can lead to serious health problems, so only take antibiotics when they are prescribed and complete the full course of treatment.
Aspirin is a drug that reduces substances in the body that cause pain, fever, and inflammation. It is a member of the salicylate (sa-LIS-ilate) family of drugs, and its active ingredient is acetylsalicylic acid. It has been used for over 2,000 years.
Taking aspirin daily can help prevent heart attacks and strokes. It can also decrease the risk of blood clots in people with heart disease or high blood pressure.
However, aspirin can increase your chance of stomach or intestinal bleeding, especially if you are elderly or have other serious health problems. Talk to your doctor before starting aspirin. Also, do not give aspirin to children under 16 years of age, especially if they have influenza or chickenpox symptoms. This can lead to Reye syndrome, a serious and sometimes fatal condition.
Coenzyme Q10 is a vitamin-like substance that’s made in all cells to create energy and protect them from damage. It is also known as ubiquinol or CoQ10. It is found in oily fish (salmon and tuna), organ meats (such as liver), and whole grains. It is one of the most important lipid antioxidants, protecting against the formation of free radicals and preventing oxidation of proteins, lipids, and DNA.
Studies have shown that CoQ10 may prevent heart disease and reduce the side effects of cancer chemotherapy drugs such as doxorubicin and daunorubicin. It can also help to relieve muscle problems caused by statin cholesterol medications.
It is not known whether ubiquinone passes into breast milk or may harm a nursing baby. It is best to avoid this product if you are breastfeeding or using any other herbal/health supplements.
The antibiotic penicillin is a wonder drug for many diseases caused by bacteria. It works by inhibiting the enzymes involved in building bacterial cell walls, and by activating other enzymes that break these barriers down. It does not affect human cells, which do not have these protective structures.
Scientists Howard Florey and Ernst Chain turned Fleming’s discovery into a drug capable of treating serious infections. Their work came during a period when the chemical industry was fully engaged in World War II.
Like all drugs, it has side effects. In some cases, it can cause a severe allergic reaction, including anaphylaxis. If this occurs, contact a doctor immediately. Some medicines, such as sulfonamides and certain anticoagulants, may interfere with the absorption of penicillin and reduce its effectiveness.
Steroids (also called corticosteroid) are drugs that reduce inflammation and help the body fight infection. They come as tablets to take orally, inhalers and nasal sprays, creams and ointments. They can also be injected into joints and muscles. Steroids can have serious side effects including thin skin, fluid retention, changes to the menstrual cycle and weakened bones, so they are usually only prescribed for short periods of time.
Steroids also suppress the immune system and may make you more susceptible to infections like chicken pox or shingles. If someone you know is taking steroids, look out for signs of irritability or aggression. This is known as roid rage and can be a sign that they are experiencing steroid withdrawal. If you notice these symptoms, talk to a healthcare professional as soon as possible.