Urgent care centers have become increasingly popular, providing convenient and accessible medical care for non-life-threatening illnesses and injuries. However, many people are unsure of the scope of services offered by urgent care practitioners.

One reason people seek care is to diagnose common illnesses and receive treatment. For bacterial infections, patients typically need antibiotics. At Founders Family Medicine in Castle Rock, our providers can offer patients with bacterial infections a prescription for antibiotics.

What are Antibiotics?

Antibiotics are a group of medicines used to treat bacterial infections. They work by killing or inhibiting the growth of bacteria in the body. Antibiotics are administered orally or intravenously, depending on the type and severity of the infection. Common antibiotics include penicillin, amoxicillin, and ciprofloxacin. These medications are effective in treating common bacterial infections.

Can Urgent Care Prescribe Antibiotics?

Yes, urgent care providers can prescribe antibiotics for bacterial infections. Depending on the nature and severity of the condition, your provider may opt to treat you with over-the-counter medicine or refer you to a specialist for further evaluation and treatment. Remember that antibiotics are ineffective against viral infections, so if you have a cold or the flu, antibiotics will not help.

When Do Patients Need Antibiotics?

Antibiotics resolve common illnesses like strep throatsinus infections, ear infections, urinary tract infections, and certain skin infections. If you have a cold or the flu virus, antibiotics will not help and may even cause more harm than good.

It’s essential to seek help from a medical professional to determine if your illness is due to a bacterial infection or another cause.

What Are the Risks of Antibiotics?

While antibiotics can effectively treat bacterial infections, there are also risks associated with their use. The most common side effects of antibiotics include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and rashes. Long-term antibiotic use can also lead to antibiotic resistance, meaning bacteria may no longer respond to a particular antibiotic. When bacteria become resistant to antibiotics, it can result in the infection becoming more severe and difficult to treat.

Why Won’t My Provider Prescribe Antibiotics?

Sometimes, a provider may choose not to prescribe antibiotics for a specific bacterial infection. The provider evaluates the individual patient’s medical history and the severity of the condition when deciding whether to prescribe treatment with antibiotics.

In some cases, antibiotics may not be necessary to treat an infection. For example, over-the-counter medications or home remedies such as steam inhalation can often effectively treat a mild sinus infection.

In many cases, the patient does not have a bacterial infection. While it can feel frustrating, your healthcare provider will not prescribe an antibiotic for an illness not caused by a bacterial infection.

Find the Care You Need in Castle Rock

Urgent care centers can provide quick, convenient medical care for minor illnesses and injuries. In some cases, urgent care practitioners may be able to prescribe antibiotics for bacterial infections.

If you need care in the Castle Rock area, visit Founders Family Medicine. We offer compassionate care. Our team can diagnose your condition and offer a treatment plan. Contact us to schedule an appointment for care.