Drug resistance for some types of antibiotics among Thai children has jumped by more than 30 times over a period of 10 years, according to a 2011 report by the Public Health Ministry.
Asst Professor Niyada Kiatying-Angsulee, who heads the Thai Drug Watch Centre, said Thursday that the main cause of the problem is giving children unnecessary drugs.
"For example, most cases of cold are a result of a virus but children are prescribed antibiotics that kill bacteria," she said.
According to her, another common cause of resistance is young patients who stop taking their antibiotic drugs, or fail to complete the whole dosage after symptoms disappear.
"As well, if you start with strong antibiotics, any weaker medicines won't help later on," she explained.
Niyada advised parents not to press doctors into prescribing antibiotics to their ill children.
"You may think that those medicines will give your children a quick recovery - but that may hurt them in the long run," she said.