Antibiotics Every Prepper Should Have


Survival antibiotics are items that both preppers and survivalists alike often overlook.

It’s usually tricky to know the exact meds you should buy or even just where to source them from.

Also, since you might never have had a reason to use them in your past, you might end up thinking that you probably won’t need them in the future either.

The truth is, such meds can prove to be lifesavers. Easy to use and effective, survival antibiotics will come in handy when you’re dealing with an infection and so on.

Not many people know that there very many different kinds of SHTF antibiotics. Most people get to know about them when they have something they need help treating.

In this article, we will be looking at some of the most widely used and most efficient survival antibiotics. However, you must understand that antibiotics are not things you should take to treat a slight pain, a small fever, or a simple cold.

These meds are often aimed exclusively at treating bacterial infections and the like. They should only be used in emergency scenarios and only when prescribed by a doctor.

If you take them frequently, not only will you slowly become immune to them, but they’ll also start losing their efficacy in the long-term.

So let’s take a look at the most common SHTF antibiotics out there without further ado.

SHTF Antibiotics



Cephalexin is a popular antibiotic most commonly used to treat all kinds of respiratory infections, mainly severe bronchitis and pneumonia.

Although most doctors, at the same time, will treat middle ear infections with Cephalexin as well. This survival antibiotic has a few adverse reactions associated with it.

However, it’s still something that you can use to treat kids and pregnant women as well safely.


This medication is sort of like an all-purpose survival antibiotic. It can treat so many infections, from infections of the urinary tract and the prostate to bacterial diarrhea, pneumonia, bronchitis, and even the excruciatingly painful infectious colitis.

However, you must keep in mind that this is not an antibiotic used to treat children or pregnant women. By no means should you ever give this drug to both these sets of people.


Amoxicillin and Cephalexin have very similar mechanisms of action. It’s a survival antibiotic that’s also mainly used to treat respiratory infections.

It can again fight the same kind of bacteria Cephalexin can fight as well. Both pregnant women and children can safely take this medication to help them treat bacterial infections.

However, this particular antibiotic can lead you to experience severe allergic reactions.

If you see any signs that show you might be experiencing an allergic reaction, cease and desist from taking the drug immediately and see your doctor as soon as possible.



Metronidazole is an antibiotic that most people commonly use to treat anaerobic bacteria.

It’s also commonly used together with other SHTF antibiotics to treat diverticulitis, colitis, and several other intestine and stomach infections.

Moreover, metronidazole is also incredibly adept at treating meningitis, bone, and lung infections and can also help treat bacterial vaginosis.

Pregnant or nursing women and kids should not take this survival antibiotic. It’s too strong for these individuals.


This survival antibiotic treats Syphilis, Chlamydia, Lyme disease, and several other infections that attack the middle ear and your respiratory system.

Nevertheless, it would help if you kept in mind that this antibiotic can cause numerous unpleasant side effects. Some of these include severe abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.

Even so, it’s still an excellent idea to have this medication in your survival kit, just in case.


Doxycycline and Erythromycin have very similar effects and treat more or less the same things. Doxycycline can treat some dangerous illnesses such as Typhus and Malaria.

This survival antibiotic should never be used on children or pregnant/nursing women. Also, you will need to be very hydrated and drink plenty of water when using Doxycycline.

Sometimes people sell this particular antibiotic as ‘Fish Cycline”, and even though it’s not necessarily meant for humans, you can still use it with little to no issue (unless it has expired, of course)


This antibiotic isn’t precisely one of the cheapest options available on the market.

However, it’s a beneficial and versatile antibiotic that folks can use to treat illnesses like Lyme disease, Typhoid, Chlamydia, Syphilis, and a host of many other respiratory tract infections.

It has a few side effects, such as diarrhea and nausea, but you’ll rarely experience such when you’re taking this drug. It’s generally a drug that’s safe to use.



This antibiotic is currently a trendy survival medication.

The reason for this is because it’s made to specifically treat a wide variety of different infections such as bacterial meningitis, gastrointestinal conditions, respiratory tract infections, and even Anthrax.

Furthermore, it also doesn’t have a high allergy risk.

Trimethoprim and Sulfamethoxazole

TMP is a cocktail of potent survival antibiotics that are produced specifically to treat respiratory infections and urinary tract infections.

At the same time, this antibiotic mixture is highly efficient against illnesses like staphylococcus aureus, which can resist Methicillin (a powerful staph strain).

How To Self Diagnose

Self Diagnosis

You’re not supposed to use antibiotics to treat viral illnesses. They’re meant to treat bacterial ailments.

You can use the symptom analysis below to determine what kind of condition might be ailing you. If you suspect you’ve got a viral complication, don’t use antibiotics.


Viral illnesses typically have wide-spread symptoms. On the other hand, bacteria cause site-specific symptoms, like those that involve the chest, throat, stomach, and sinuses.

Phlegm color

Viral illnesses may produce cloudy or clear mucus, if any. Bacterial diseases, however, cause colored phlegm (bloody, yellow, green, or brown-tinged)

Duration of illness

Many viral ailments will last around 2-10 days. Bacterial conditions, however, will commonly last way longer than just ten days.


You may or may not get a fever when battling a viral infection, but when you’ve got a bacterial infection, there’s a very high chance you’ll end up getting a fever (98.6 degrees Fahrenheit is average body temperature)

Alternative Options


In an SHTF situation where you don’t have access to prescription meds, an alternative option is to use Fish Antibiotics. You can usually find them in the form of pellets and powder.

However, you can also find them in pill form as well. They may not have the same quality as those specifically designed for human consumption.

However, if the pill you’re considering has got an imprint code, then there’s a high chance it’s safe for both medical use and can be used to treat human illnesses.

The biggest concern will be whether it’s effective enough to treat you properly or whether it’s at risk of contamination because of poor storage conditions.

Since we’re focusing more on SHTF scenarios, you must note how Fish antibiotics can come in handy. That being said, they should be used with caution and only when you don’t have any other viable option.

Below are some common Fish antibiotics and their human equivalents and their dosage.

  • Fish Penn Forte (Penicillin 500mg)
  • Fish Zole (Metronidazole 500mg)
  • Fish Cin (Clindamycin 150mg)
  • Fish Cillin (Ampicillin 250mg)
  • Fish Mox (Amoxicillin 500mg)
  • Fish Flex Forte (Cephalexin 500mg)
  • Fin Flox (Ciprofloxacin 500mg)

Off-grid Contingency Medications

Talk to your doctor about telemedicine options if you’re going to be off the grid. Doctors can prescribe antibiotics to people who currently don’t need them but might need them in the future.

These prescriptions are justified by current events, local risks, expected travel, and your lifestyle. For instance, maybe you’re going somewhere where first responders and EMS won’t be able to reach you.

You can get prescription meds and store them in your survival kit just if you get sick, have an infection, or get an injury. Prepping and prevention include having an emergency crisis plan, training, and a stock of medical supplies.

It’s always better to have and not need rather than need and not have.

Wrapping Up

To sum things up, you don’t necessarily need to have all the antibiotics we’ve just mentioned above in your survival kit when you travel. ž

You only need like three or four to treat a wide array of infections. This way, you’ll be on the safe side.

If you want them to last as long as possible, make sure to refrigerate them, if you can, that is, seeing as how this article is anticipating SHTF situations. If they aren’t frozen, their efficacy will be greatly affected.

Anyway, not only are most of the antibiotics above cost-effective, but they can help save the life of someone you hold dear or even just your own life as well. Avoid neglecting to have them in your survival kit.

Hopefully, now you know the SHTF antibiotics you need as a prepper.


Greg - Prepping Insider

Hey, I'm a prepping enthusiast. Prepping for me is simply something of a passion. I have personally lived in many different rural properties that have given me a wealth of knoweldge and experience in practically living out survival and preparation situations. It’s not about getting the latest survival gadgets or buckets of food as its more of a lifestyle.

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