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Amoxicillin Overview

Amoxicillin is a penicillin-based antibiotic, used to treat a variety of bacterial infections.


Used for: Bacterial infections.

Availability: Prescription.

Dosage: Oral: 250 mg - 500 mg to 1 g

Pregnancy: Category B. No proven risk.

Side effects:A rash, Jaundice, Blood in your stool, noticeably darker urine, Muscle weakness, Unexplained bruises, Swollen glands, Palpitations, Sudden weight loss

Warnings: Alcohol not recomended.

Notes:You should avoid taking Amoxicillin if you have asthma, a liver or kidney condition or mononucleosis.

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Amoxicillin (am OX i sil in)

Learn About:

How to take - Side Effects - Dosage - Things To Avoid - Pregnancy

It works by attacking the bacteria and breaking down their cell walls. This stops them from growing and multiplying, which ultimately kills your infection.

Amoxicillin can also be used in combination with other medication to treat problems such as stomach ulcers, but this should only be done on the advice of a doctor.

How To Take Amoxicillin

Amoxicillin comes in many forms, including tablets, capsules, liquids or drops.

You must always listen to your doctor’s instructions and read the label on the packaging before you start your treatment. For example, some tablets must be swallowed whole to be effective, while others need to be chewed before swallowing. Some liquids can be mixed into food and drinks, while others can’t.

If you have an infection and think you might require amoxicillin to get better, speak to one of our doctors today. They’ll assess your symptoms and decide whether or not amoxicillin is the appropriate treatment for you.

What Does Amoxicillin Treat?

Amoxicillin can treat a wide variety of bacterial infections in many areas of the body. You might be prescribed it if you have:

What Are The Side Effects of Amoxicillin?

In the vast majority of cases, amoxicillin will not cause any side effects. However, some people experience digestive issues such as stomach pain, nausea, vomiting or diarrhoea, while a headache and swollen tongue are also a possibility. These will usually go away once your treatment has finished.

Some side effects are less common and potentially more serious. See a doctor if you experience any of the following:

  • A rash, particularly one that causes blisters, pain or peeling skin
  • Signs of jaundice, e.g. yellow eyes or skin
  • Blood in your stool or noticeably darker urine
  • Muscle weakness
  • Unexplained bruises or bleeding
  • Swollen glands
  • Palpitations (i.e. if your heart is beating faster than normal)
  • Sudden weight loss

Some people experience an allergic reaction to amoxicillin. If this happens, you should seek emergency medical assistance immediately. Symptoms of an allergic reaction include trouble breathing, eating or speaking and a visibly swollen face.

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Amoxicillin Dosage

In most cases, you’ll be instructed to take amoxicillin either two or three times per day. However, because amoxicillin is used to treat so many conditions, it’s not possible to suggest a ‘normal’ dosage. Your doctor will prescribe whatever strength of medication they feel is appropriate for your condition.

For your treatment to be effective, it’s vital that you stick to the schedules and amounts your doctor has outlined:

You shouldn’t stop taking your medication just because you’re feeling better. Remember, amoxicillin needs time to eliminate all bacteria to prevent your infection from returning.

You shouldn’t take more than your recommended dose if you think you’re not getting better. Amoxicillin can take a few days to have an effect.

You should never share your medication with anyone else.

If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you realise - unless it’s nearly time for your next dose anyway. You must never take a double dose of amoxicillin, even if you’ve missed a previous dose.

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Things To Avoid

You should avoid taking Amoxicillin if you have asthma, a liver or kidney condition or mononucleosis (glandular fever). It’s very important that your doctor knows if you have any of these conditions, as it will affect their assessment of whether or not amoxicillin is suitable for you.

It’s also advisable to tell them if you have a history of side effects with other drugs, such as diarrhoea, vomiting and particularly, allergic reactions.

Amoxicillin and Alcohol

In purely scientific terms, it’s unlikely that one or two alcoholic drinks will do you any harm during your course of amoxicillin. However, given that you will only be prescribed amoxicillin if you’re unwell, alcohol could potentially slow down your recovery.

Remember that the side effects of amoxicillin include nausea and vomiting, so it’s really up to you to decide if these side effects will be more or less likely if you drink alcohol.

If you do decide to drink, it’s best to time this so you leave a couple of hours after each dose of amoxicillin, in order for the drug to have enough time to absorb into your system.

Is It Safe To Take Amoxicillin During Pregnancy?

It’s thought that amoxicillin is highly unlikely to harm your unborn baby. Similarly, low levels of amoxicillin can be found in breast milk if you’re taking the drug while breastfeeding, but this is not thought to pose a risk to your child.

However, in the absence of any clear human studies, pregnant women and nursing mothers will not be prescribed amoxicillin unless the potential benefits outweigh the risks.

You should inform your doctor if you’re pregnant or planning to have a baby soon, and it will be for them to decide whether amoxicillin is right for you.

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amoxicillin and pregnancy

Talk to a doctor Today

If you’d like more information about amoxicillin, or if it has helped you in the past and you’d like to know if it could work again, speak to one of our doctors today.

They’ll listen to what you have to say and ask questions about your symptoms, before providing you with advice and prescriptions if needed.

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