These drugs fight bacteria. We use them for things like strep throat and urinary tract infections. They kill bacteria, but they don't kill viruses. So they don't do anything for a cold or flu. And often, they aren't needed for many sinus infections or ear infections. These tend to get better on their own.

How are they taken?

How are antibiotics taken? They come in many forms. Some are taken by mouth. These are pills, capsules or liquids. Some antibiotics are applied to the skin. They may be in the form of a cream, spray or ointment. If you have an eye or ear infection, you may be given antibiotic drops. And for serious infections, we may give you an antibiotic injection or an IV. 

How do they work?

How do they work? Well, these drugs can fight bacteria in a few ways. Some attack the bacteria's outer wall. Others make it hard for the bacteria to grow and multiply. These drugs help your body's immune system kill the bacteria.


Your doctor knows when an antibiotic may help you. Never pressure your doctor to give you an antibiotic if they say it isn't needed. And if you're given an antibiotic, make sure you finish the entire course. For more info, talk to your doctor.