The U.S. overprescribes antibiotics like crazy which is leading to a long-term antibiotic shortage. That means bad news for everybody who get their kid an antibiotic scrip at the first sign of a runny nose. But it means really bad news for those who face serious illness and really need antibiotics, only to find that they are in short supply. The overuse of antibiotics is also jacking up medical costs, so it behooves America to figure out when they don’t really need them. Colds and bronchitis typically take two weeks to get over: no antibiotics. Green sinus discharge and sputum is as often viral as it is bacterial. Ear and sinus infections don’t always require antibiotics. There are more: read on. 

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