I recently developed a urinary tract infection and had to be put on antibiotics – Cipro to be exact. I had actually been quite healthy in the last few years and aside from a few colds I have not had any infections that needed antibiotic treatment. But actually these days I would almost rather trade some minor illnesses to take the place of the horrible pre-menopausal symptoms I have had that are totally driving me crazy. I never really had a problem in the past with antibiotics. There are a couple I was allergic to as a child so they remain on my health records as not to take, but other than that I tolerate them well. I had never taken Cipro before, but since the local pharmacy now gives this prescription out free of charge, it was what I was prescribed. So I started taking it and even after just one pill, I was so nauseated, dizzy, extremely bloated and my anxiety had worsened. The next few days I tried to continue with the pills but by the third day I had to be taken off the medication. Some of the symptoms went away after a copule of days but the anxiety remained high. This made me wonder and do some research on the possibility if antibiotics change your body chemistry and is it more pronounced when the hormones are fluctuating.
The research I conducted seems to point to the fact that antibiotics do change your body chemistry quite a bit and even that can heighten anxiety. Add to that the fluctuating hormones during pre-menopause and menopause and the body can become quite confused and react in odd ways. To compound things further, many pre-menopausal and menopausal women are on a variety of other medications such as blood pressure medications or cholesterol lowering medications. So it all becomes just one giant cocktail of confusion to the body. Unfortunately, many times you must take antibiotics for certain ailments otherwise they won’t clear up and some conditions can be life threatening.
Obviously trying to stay the healthiest by eating right and exercising and keeping good health rituals to avoid illness is the way to go. But easier said than done for many women and sometimes even doing the above, still illness or infections cannot be avoided. One of the best way to combat the negative effects of antibiotics is to take pre-biotics and pro-biotics. There are many choices of both out there on the market and most are inexpensive. Eating lots of yogurt, kefir or other fermented foods also helps. All these help put the good bacteria back in the body. Antibiotics not only kill bad bacteria, but they kill off all good bacteria too. Once that occurs yeast overgrowth can happen. The two places yeast loves to overgrow is the intestines and the vagina. Both places that already cause women so many other issues. Many holistic practitioners recommend taking daily doses of probiotics as a maintenance regimen along with other vitamins. This can keep a woman’s system strong and fight off bacteria and illnesses even better as well as improve digestion.
I hope I will not need to take any more antibiotics anytime soon. This was a horrible experience. My doctor’s office has now actually listed Cipro as being an allergy for me. Even though I didn’t break out in hives like with traditional drug allergies, the fact that I was so violently sick warrants this medication to be taken off the list for me.