• Consumer Health: Understanding antibiotic resistance

a middle-aged man reading a prescription bottle label in front of his open bathroom medicine cabinet

Are you misusing antibiotics?
The World Health Organization's World Antibiotic Awareness Week is Nov. 18–24, which make this a good time to learn more about the use — and misuse — of antibiotics. Did you know that antibiotics can't treat colds, the flu and most sore throats? Or that the overuse and misuse of antibiotics are key factors contributing to antibiotic resistance? This is when an antibiotic no longer has an effect on a certain strain of bacteria. For many years, the introduction of new antibiotics outpaced the development of antibiotic resistance. In recent years, however, the pace of medication resistance has contributed to an increasing number of health care problems. Find out more about the correct use of antibiotics, and the role health care providers and patients play in antibiotic stewardship.


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Make changes to stop prediabetes from developing into diabetes
Prediabetes means that your blood sugar level is higher than normal but not yet high enough to be Type 2 diabetes. Without lifestyle changes, though, if you have prediabetes, you are likely to progress to Type 2 diabetes. The good news is that eating healthy foods, incorporating physical activity in your daily routine and maintaining a healthy weight can help bring your blood sugar level back to normal. Here's what you need to know.

Moisturizers: Options for softer, healthier skin
Fall's cooler temperatures and lower humidity may be drying out your skin. Moisturizers prevent and treat dry skin, protect sensitive skin, improve skin tone and texture, and mask imperfections. The moisturizers that are best for you depend on many factors, including your skin type and age, and whether you have specific conditions, such as acne. Here are some tips for finding the right moisturizer for your dry skin.

Vitamin D deficiency and heart disease
It's long been known that getting too little vitamin D weakens bones. But when it comes to heart health, the role vitamin D may play is less clear. Vitamin D deficiency may be linked to heart disease and an increased risk of high blood pressure. However, more research is needed. Learn more from Dr. Sheldon Sheps, an emeritus Mayo Clinic hypertension and peripheral vascular diseases specialist.

Over-the-counter treatment for dry eyes
Are you seeking relief for dry eyes? Artificial tears may be the answer. Artificial tears are nonprescription eyedrops used to lubricate dry eyes and help maintain moisture on the outer surface. Such eyedrops may be used to treat dry eyes that result from aging; certain medications; a medical condition; eye surgery; or environmental factors, such as smoky or windy conditions. Learn more from Dr. Alaina Softing Hataye, a Mayo Clinic optometrist.

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