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2023 – The Year of Antibiotics

By Sunday 10 December 2023Health

For most of 2023, I’ve been unwell with bacterial infections. I’ve had an infected knee, an abscess on my arm, pneumonia, a dental abscess, tonsilitis and sinusitis. As my mum would say: I’m surprised you don’t look like an antibiotic, with the amount you’ve taken.

Here is a list of antibiotics I’ve taken in 2023:

It is known that people living with Type 1 Diabetes, like me, have a weakened immune system. But to spend the majority of the year fighting bacterial infections and taking antibiotics is exhausting.

I’ve been trying really hard with the self-care including: regularly washing my hands, getting plenty of rest and sleep, drinking plenty of fluids, eating well, getting vaccinated for COVID-19 (plus boosters). I’ve even tried taking Vitamin C supplements. But nothing has seemed to make any difference. It’s like my white blood cells see bacteria coming and decide to go for a nap instead of fighting. Either that, or my immune system is made up of passivists, rather than warriors.

Every time I get an infection, it spikes my blood sugars. They go high and as much as I try to manage this by eating less and injecting more insulin, managing diabetes feels like having a full time job, on top of having a full time job and out of work commitments.

These regular periods of illness have affected my work and home life. I’m so lucky that Type 1 diabetes is classed as an unseen disability under The Equality Act (2010), otherwise I’d probably be out of a job.

I’ll be really honest, 2023 for me has been about managing illness after illness, whilst trying to maintain my employment. These two tasks haven’t left room for doing the things that I like to do, such as reading, writing, seeing friends and family, etc. That’s why the blog has been pretty quiet as of late.

Being on these different antibiotics has also got me worried. I’ve noticed that some of them haven’t been as effective for me as they previously have been at dealing with bacterial infections. Antibiotic resistance is something I’m noticing and with no new antibiotics on the horizon, what’s going to happen when antibiotics stop working altogether?

Blog soon,

Antony

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