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The Downward Spiral: Antibiotics and Recurring Infections

Joette Calabrese, HMC, PHom M

October 8th, 2017  |  21 Comments

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Alternative to Antibiotics

There is nothing more frustrating than being stuck in a downward spiral of illness.

One problem that I see over and over again is recurring infections caused by antibiotic use.

Unfortunately, you or a loved one probably know these types of problems all too well: ear infections that come back to plague kids like clockwork every month, repetitive bouts of strep throat, or sinus infections that come back every year (sometimes several times a year).

Are these just a normal part of life? Why are some of us prone to these persistent trials?

It turns out that antibiotics may be the root of the problem.

Believe it or not, antibiotic use sets us up for recurrent infections. According to the Guardian newspaper, “Antibiotics leave children ‘more likely to contract drug-resistant infections.’ Public health official warns children’s risk of drug-resistant infections 12 times higher in months following course of antibiotics.”

And, it’s not only recurrent bacterial infections that we have to worry about. Antibiotics also set us up for fungal overgrowths, leading to recurring fungal infections.

Here’s an all-too-common scenario of how antibiotic use and recurrent infections wreak havoc with our future health.

Let me introduce you to a toddler named Joey.

Joey had his first ear infection. His bright red face and obvious pain put his mother into a panic, and although she didn’t want to, she felt she needed to get to the doctor to get a course of antibiotics for him.

The antibiotics worked great and cleared up the infection. But, a month later, Joey got another ear infection — even worse than the first. Another course of antibiotics followed. And then another ear infection.

Soon Joey became one of those kids “who are just prone to ear infections.” The doctor has tried writing scripts for stronger and stronger antibiotics but is now recommending having tubes put into Joey’s ears!

Many scientists now believe that the first three years of life are the most crucial for establishing a healthy gut microbiome.

According to a study published in the journal Microbial Ecology in Health and Disease, “This is the period when the intestinal microbiota, a vital asset for health and neurodevelopment, is established and its alteration during this period has the potential to profoundly affect host health and development.”[1]

Ramnik Xavier, MD, PhD, chief of the MGH Gastrointestinal Unit states that, “One of the key motivations of microbiome research is that the microbial population of early childhood appears to be critical to human health, in that decreased diversity of the gut microbiome has been implicated in a number of allergic and autoimmune diseases”[2].

Disrupting the gut microbiome can have long term consequences

This means that disrupting gut flora with antibiotics can have particularly severe and long-term consequences during those early years when a child’s internal biome is still in a fragile state.

Disrupting the gut microbiome leads to gut problems, and because gut health is directly linked to immune health, immunity also suffers!

Diminished immunity leads to recurring infections, autoimmune conditions and poor health in general.

Poor health and lowered immunity usually mean more antibiotics, and, before you know it, you or your child is caught up in a vicious downward spiral.

And that’s exactly what Joey’s mother now faces.

The many courses of antibiotics that Joey had during his “terrible twos” likely disrupted his natural, healthy gut flora and set off a host of auto-immune problems such as allergic reactions to dust and cats.

Now, he can’t have gluten anymore without breaking out into eczema and hives. Dairy is making his tummy hurt. And then there is the constipation.

Poor Joey is having a real tough time with potty-training because of it, so his pediatrician recommends Miralax.

Dr. Kaayla Daniel pointed out in a guest blog post here on my site that Miralax is a chemical that is also used as a toilet bowl cleaner. (Read “The Poop on Miralax” here.) Why add something else into the mix that comes with its own complications to exacerbate the downward spiral?

So — if antibiotics are the root of the problem, what does it take to uproot the problem?

Well, homeopathy of course!

For Joey’s ear infections, especially because they initially happened every time one of his teeth came in and also because he was sooooo irritable, Joey’s mother could have given him Chamomilla 200 every 6 hours. That would have been a safe alternative to antibiotics and uprooted his ear problems.

There are other good choices for ear infections such as Hepar sulph and Pulsatilla, but if we can decode outstanding keynotes of the condition, we can better zero in on the remedy choice.

The good news is now Joey’s mom has discovered homeopathy and learned more about how immunity is directly influenced by gut health. She’s taken my course Good Gut, Bad Gut to learn how to reverse the antibiotic fallout that Joey is suffering from.

For instance, she has decided to address Joey’s food intolerances by using Calcarea carbonicum 200 every other day. Calc carb is also great for improving immunity (when the immunity is clearly down), as well as helping with teething, so this is a win-win-win remedy for little Joey’s situation.

Plus, she might also consider Bovista 200 every other day, as it will also address his gluten and dairy intolerances over time.

Joey's mom is empowered

Joey’s mom feels much more empowered because homeopathy has given her more control over the health of her child now by addressing not only his infections when they recur but by also addressing the damage that has been done.

Dealing with a sick little one can certainly be very stressful for a mom, so when she gives him the Calc carb, she gives herself Ignatia 200, and while she’s at it … she gives her pediatrician the boot!  And begins to look for one who is not a throwback from 1970. 

What if you can help your family avoid experiencing that whole cycle of antibiotic fallout in the first place by employing homeopathy instead of antibiotics? Well, that’s precisely what my newest course is designed to help you do. It’s called The Antibiotic Alternative: Practical, Proven Homeopathic Protocols. I encourage you to learn more about it by clicking here before you or your family get stuck in that downward spiral of recurrent infections.


[1] Rodríguez JM, Murphy K, Stanton C, et al. The composition of the gut microbiota throughout life, with an emphasis on early life. Microbial Ecology in Health and Disease. 2015;26:10.3402/mehd.v26.26050. doi:10.3402/mehd.v26.26050.

[2] Massachusetts General Hospital. (2016, June 15). Impact of antibiotic treatment on infant gut microbiome revealed: Antibiotic treatment reduces stability, diversity of microbial population in the first 3 years of life. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 4, 2017 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/06/160615151708.htm


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Joette laughingI am a homeopath with a worldwide practice working with families and individuals via Zoom. I'm also a teacher and most importantly, a mom who raised my now-adult children depending on homeopathy over the last 31 years. I lived decades of my life with food intolerances, allergies, and chemical sensitivities until I was cured with homeopathy, so I understand pain, anxiety, and suffering. You may feel that your issues are more severe or different than anyone else’s, but I have seen it all in my practice and in my work in India. My opinion is that nothing has come close to the reproducible, safe and effective results that my clients, students and I have achieved with homeopathy.

Call today and learn how homeopathy might just be the missing piece in your health strategy.

Joette is not a physician and the relationship between Joette and her clients is not of prescriber and patient, but as educator and client. It is fully the client's choice whether or not to take advantage of the information Joette presents. Homeopathy doesn't "treat" an illness; it addresses the entire person as a matter of wholeness that is an educational process, not a medical one. Joette believes that the advice and diagnosis of a physician is often in order.

We've provided links for your convenience but we do not receive any remuneration nor affiliation in payment from your purchase.

The Author disclaims all liability for any loss or risk, personal or otherwise incurred as a consequence of use of any material in this article. This information is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.


21 thoughts on “The Downward Spiral: Antibiotics and Recurring Infections”

  1. Kingston says:

    On the remedy card it says ear infections for the cal carb and bovista peotocol. The article says this is for the food intolerances. Is that a typo saying ear infections? Also is the remedy taken mixed or separately? Thank you for all the work and health you spread?

    1. Joette Calabrese, HMC, CCH, RSHom(Na) says:

      Refresh and try again. It was indeed a mistake that we’ve now corrected. Thanks for the heads up.

  2. Amy says:

    I have heard repeatedly that Lycopodium / Arsenicum combined are for food intolerances, twice daily. And that Bovista 200 is once daily for long term. Are these incorrect, or, what are the differences / guidelines in these two different protocols (the ones you mention in this blog vs. the ones I mention in my comment)? Thanks so much! I love this information and want to learn and understand!

    1. Joette Calabrese, HMC, CCH, RSHom(Na) says:

      A good way to learn differentials is to study a materia medica. There are many on line (for free) that are reputable and soon I’ll be publishing my own. Also, to learn this method more thoroughly, I strongly advise taking one of my courses, such as Good Gut Bad Gut. Unless you have a good deal of experience with this medicine, to try to piece together a schedule for a chronic condition using hearsay, is not a prudent approach. I hope you continue your learning quest.

  3. Vee says:

    I have spent the day reading your website, & wondered what you might think of someone who keeps popping up with illnesses (usually weird things), but hasn’t really taken RX drugs other than some short stints on antibiotics & a 2-year stint on Levoxyl (which I weaned myself off of)? There have been severe, oozing skin problems, anxiety attacks, high BP, glaucoma, kidney failure – all of which I refused any kind of tx other than acupuncture and some energy work. Last visit to a dr. 2 years ago (was forced to go to remain at the clinic where I get acupuncture, so there could be no *liability* issues due to my BP), she insisted on dialysis (which I refused), & I was told that my next ‘step was death’. Well, I’m still here, certainly not 100% healthy, so you can probably guess how frequently I am reading, reading, and reading your extremely informative blog (thank you!). My question is (not asking for you to solve my problem), but how do I go about searching for where to start? I don’t *think* I did anything to drive the symptoms deeper, thus causing my body to create new symptoms/illness (unless the antibiotics did that & I’m still suffering from them and/or kinda ignoring them since I didn’t know WHAT to do other than improve my diet & start some carefully chosen supplementation). What I’m asking is how I should look for a starter point in my life where I started getting *odd* illnesses, ones that often that the drs. couldn’t even determine what it was or what was causing it, and then go from those symptoms? Or look only at current symptoms & work backwards? Since the weird illnesses started when I was in grade school, they weren’t as drug happy back then (I’m 63 now), so they actually just did lots of tests but did NOT give me RX drugs. And no, I’m also not asking you to take my case or asking for that sort of advice – just advice as to how to determine a starting point to look for answers. (thank you!)
    I read the comments below your article, and one reader commented on the protocol for food intolerances she had read, and you replied she shouldn’t be relying on hearsay, but I read on your own blog earlier today (Jan 17, 2016) that it is a Banerji Protocol and that you highly recommended it. (I made note of it for future reference as it’s a good thing to know). If you know you have food intolerances, isn’t that a really good protocol to follow? Or maybe I am just totally misunderstanding your response?

    1. Joette Calabrese, HMC, CCH, RSHom(Na) says:

      If your interest is to tackle some of your concerns yourself, I urge you to start by joining (or even starting your own) study group. Go to the front page of the blog and follow the Quick Start Guide. It will take you to avenues of study.

  4. Vee says:

    Thank you. I will check that out.

  5. Elesha says:

    Hello, Is Calc Carb and Bovista taken every other day together on the same day, or separate on alternate days? Thanks!

    1. Joette Calabrese, HMC, CCH, RSHom(Na) says:

      My preference is, if possible, eoD for each.

      1. Elesha says:

        Thank you for the quick reply! Yes, I understand both should be taken eoD. Could you clarify if both are taken eoD together on the same day or taken eoD on separate days? Thank you!

        1. Joette Calabrese, HMC, CCH, RSHom(Na) says:

          either way works.

  6. Sonia says:

    is there any specific protocol for a severely disturbed gut microbiome due to long and frequent antibiotics use? would Lycopodium and Ars together help this condition or, is there another protocol that repopulates the gut with beneficial probiotics? or heals it?

    1. Annie says:

      I would love to know what the response to this would be. I have the same history.

      1. Joette Calabrese, HMC, CCH says:

        The protocol is based on how the condtion/s present/s. In other words, one would ask: what are the symptoms? And choose a protocol accordingly. Once the symptoms are identified, you might consider taking my online course titled “Good Gut Bad Gut found here: JoetteCalabrese.Courses.com

    2. Joette Calabrese, HMC, CCH says:

      The protocol is based on how the condtion/s present/s. In other words, one would ask: what are the symptoms? And choose a protocol accordingly. Once the symptoms are identified, you might consider taking my online course titled “Good Gut Bad Gut found here: JoetteCalabrese.Courses.com

  7. Olena T. says:

    Hello! Thank you for this great post! The article mentioned fungal toenail infections in passing. What remedy can be taken to help with this condition? Thank you!

  8. Nick says:

    Hi Joette,

    Been reading your blogs on antibiotics and just came across your podcast.

    If I understood your GGBG course description, it is self-paced correct and will never expire? Most of my free time is on the weekends.

    1. Joette Calabrese, HMC, CCH says:

      Yes, all of my online courses are self-paced and as long as my website is not shut down or disabled by outside influences, it will be there.
      Given the state of affairs at this time, if you need this course, start it up as soon as possible.
      Good luck.

  9. Sommer Roxas says:

    I went through all of this with my son. He does still occasionally have ear infections in the fall from a leaf mold allergy. Ear fluid develops and causes an infection. Calc carb helped with the infection this time but the fluid is still there. What else can we use?

    1. Joette Calabrese, HMC, CCH says:

      When a medicine does good work but doesn’t take the condition to completion it’s often because its use was halted too soon.

  10. Carolyn Zagar says:

    I’ve been on 12 antibiotics and 13 sets of antibiotics since September 26th for sinus infections that keep coming back. The Doctor justvkeepscpushimg antibodies and steroids. I did have sinus surgery January 10th. I got another sinus infection February 20th. I’m exhausted from all this..

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