If we need medical or surgical treatment, we go to the doctor’s office or hospital, expecting to come out feeling better–not more sick. However, that’s not the case in some communities where patients have been infected by “superbugs”. Here are eight ways to protect yourself and your family from a deadly bacterial infection.

Superbugs and You: Protect Yourself and Your Family from These Deadly Critters“Everyone is at risk of becoming infected by drug-resistant bacteria, especially as some have begun to appear outside of hospitals in the general community.

So how worried should you be?

FRONTLINE asked three infectious disease doctors what we wanted to know: what the risks are, how to protect yourself, and what questions to ask when a loved one is in the hospital.

We condensed their advice into eight handy tips to help keep bugs at bay.

Of course, none of this substitutes for actual medical advice. For serious concerns, always consult your doctor.

1. Don’t Panic

Everyone may be at risk, but the chances of catching a drug-resistant bug outside of the hospital are small for most. “For the average healthy person walking down the street?  Those organisms are not much of a threat,” Stead says.

“The first principle is to try to live a healthy lifestyle to reduce the need to be in the hospital” where you are more likely to encounter these bugs, Spellberg says. Keep your home and work space clean. Be aware of the food you eat: Wash fruits and vegetables carefully and cook other food properly to reduce your chance of coming into contact with harmful bacteria.”

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