Treating Urinary Infections Without Antibiotics
Urinary tract infections are typically caused by bacteria, which is why the standard treatment is to prescribe a course of antibiotics. However, is it also possible to treat urinary tract infections without antibiotics? Urinary tract infections are the most common bacterial infections observed in any country. In fact, nearly 50 percent of all women will end up catching a urinary tract infection at some point during their lifetime. These infections also tend to reoccur. Due to the high prevalence of such types of infections, many people often wonder if there are any non-antibiotic treatments to treat these infections. Read on to find out about how to treat urinary infections without antibiotics.
Water Is Your Best Friend
When you first notice burning when you use the restroom, its tempting to reduce your water intake. After all, that will prevent the pain, right?
It seems counter-intuitive, but you need to flush out your system. You should drink plenty of water to help your body remove the E. Coli. Dont overdo it, but drink as much water as possible in those crucial first 24 hours.
How To Get Rid Of A Uti Without Medication
This article was co-authored by Scott Tobis, MD. Dr. Scott Tobis is a board certified Urologist. With more than seven years of experience, he specializes in treating patients for urologic conditions such as urologic cancers, prostate enlargement, vasectomy, kidney stones, frequent/urgent urination, erectile dysfunction, incontinence, and blood in the urine. Dr. Tobis holds a BS in Cellular and Developmental Biology from The University of California, Santa Barbara, and an MD from Dartmouth Medical School. He completed his internship in General Surgery and residency in Urologic Surgery at the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry and his fellowship in Urologic Oncology and Robotic Surgery at The City of Hope National Medical Center. Dr. Tobis is a diplomat of the American Board of Urology. This article has been viewed 42,105 times.
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/8do Not Hold Your Pee
One thing you should always keep in mind while suffering from and undergoing treatment for UTI is that you should never hold your pee. No matter how uncomfortable it is, urinate when you feel the urge. Holding the pee even when you have to urinate can promote bacterial growth, which is why it is important to empty your bladder!
The Lowdown On Natural Treatments
D-mannose is a supplement made from a glucose-like sugar that you can find online or in health food stores. D-mannose is most helpful at preventing E. coli from sticking to the walls of the urinary tract, says Rice. D-mannose in recurrent urinary tract infections. . If taken with a lot of water, this can effectively flush out the bacteria that is causing the infection.
Rice often tells patients to take 500 milligrams every two to three hours when experiencing symptoms however, the best dose is individual. You can find more guidelines here, and when in doubt, a good rule of thumb is to follow the manufacturers guidelines. Be sure to drink lots of water throughout the day to help the D-mannose remove the bacteria. Again, if the symptoms persist more than 24 hours or get worse, get yourself to the doctor.
D-mannose isnt recommended for those with diabetes, and if youre taking other medications, you need to talk to a doctor before starting this treatment. Diarrhea is a common side effect.
Althaea officinalis, otherwise known as Marshmallow, is an anti-inflammatory herb widely available in powdered, supplement, and tea form. Althaea officinalis is a demulcent herb that can soothe and coat the lining of the urinary tract to help decrease inflammation, says Rice. Make a strong tea and sip throughout the day.
Just add water
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Load Up On Vitamin C For A Healthy Urinary Tract
Getting plenty of foods high in vitamin C is important because large amounts of vitamin C make urine more acidic. This inhibits the growth of bacteria in your urinary tract, according to Johns Hopkins Medicines health library. However, if you have an active UTI, you may want to avoid citrus or other acidic foods. These foods are known to irritate the bladder, which is the last thing you need when youre having pain urinating.
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Home Remedies And Treatments For Kidney Infections
Some people prefer to treat medical conditions with home remedies or complementary remedies.
Because of how serious kidney infections are, its important that you dont rely on home remedies. Instead, take the prescription antibiotics a doctor gives you and use home remedies to help ease symptoms or pain.
You can also use home remedies to avoid UTIs and improve kidney function.
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The Best Course Of Action
For most sufferers, Ali advises the best course of action is to increase fluid intake, take appropriate pain relief and speak with a healthcare professional for further assessment of symptoms.
If symptoms persist for more than two days or include a fever, loin pain and/or nausea and vomiting it is important to see your GP for advice on whether antibiotics are required. Its also important to go back if youve been started on antibiotics and symptoms do not improve within 48 hours.
While some of the over-the-counter treatments may provide symptomatic relief, the 2018 NICE UTI guidelines state that there is no evidence found for cranberry products or urine alkalinising agents to treat UTI, he adds. However, theres a clinical trial showing the effectiveness of D-mannose. And grapefruit seed extract and oil of oregano have also been found to be beneficial.
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Should You Try To Get Rid Of A Uti Without Antibiotics
As you can see there are options to get rid of a UTI without antibiotics. However, just because you can do something doesnât mean you should do it. Antibiotics are still the gold standard for treating UTIs.
That being said, we understand your pain. Getting antibiotics can be challenging. Our U.S. healthcare system seems built to keep patients from receiving appropriate care.
VirtuCare was created because we wanted something better than the current ways of delivering healthcare. As physicians we also recognize the pain of:
- Rising insurance and drug costs
- Lack of cost transparency
- Unsafe office environments during COVID-19
- Rude staff and colleagues
- Lack of access to medical specialists
With a VirtuCare telemedicine visit, you can meet with a board-certified urologist today and receive appropriate antibiotic therapy for your UTI. If you prefer an âau naturaleâ approach then we can answer any questions you may have after reading this article. Whatever you need, we are here for you.
Speaking of help, youâre probably wondering what to do with all of that cranberry juice in your fridge. Our vote . . . make some cosmos and re-watch Sex And The City.
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Are There Any Over
Over-the-counter antibiotics for a UTI are not available. You should see your doctor to have your symptoms evaluated.
Your provider may recommend an OTC product called Uristat to numb your bladder and urethra to ease the burning pain during urination. Uristat can be bought without a prescription at the pharmacy. A similar phenazopyridine product called Pyridium is also available.
Take phenazopyridine for only 48 hours, and be aware it may cause your urine to turn a brown, orange or red color which may stain fabrics or contact lenses. It may be best to not wear contact lenses while being treated with phenazopyridine.
Phenazopyridine is not an antibiotic and will not cure a UTI.
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Consider Switching Birth Control
Birth control methods with spermicides, as discussed above, have been linked to increased risk for UTIs. Additionally, other birth control methods, like intrauterine devices have also demonstrated to act as a source for recurrent UTIs. Talk to your healthcare provider about birth control options or if you suspect your current contraceptive may be causing recurrent UTIs.
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What Is The Prognosis For A Person With A Urinary Tract Infection
Urinary tract infections typically respond very well to treatment. A UTI can be uncomfortable before you start treatment, but once your healthcare provider identifies the type of bacteria and prescribes the right antibiotic medication, your symptoms should improve quickly. Its important to keep taking your medication for the entire amount of time your healthcare provider prescribed. If you have frequent UTIs or if your symptoms arent improving, your provider may test to see if its an antibiotic-resistant infection. These are more complicated infections to treat and may require intravenous antibiotics or alternative treatments.
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Take An Otc Pain Reliever
Over-the-counter pain medications can temporarily relieve pain caused by a UTI. Use caution here, and always speak with a doctor first, as some UTIs can turn into kidney infections. In these cases, patients should avoid taking nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs , which could make the infection worse.
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Combine Home Remedies With Medical Care
All of the above home remedies may ease symptoms of a UTI. However, none of them are likely to cure a urinary tract infection. While it is not possible for the immune system to fight off the bacteria that causes UTIs on its own, antibiotics are usually necessary to aid in the process. You can combine home remedies for UTI relief with the medication your primary care provider prescribes to both treat the infection and minimize your discomfort.
If you decide to let your immune system fight the infection on its own, keep close tabs on your condition. Specifically, see your doctor if you experience any of the following:
- Pain in your lower back
The above symptoms could indicate that the infection has spread to the kidneys. A kidney infection requires prompt medical care, since it can permanently damage the organs or move into the bloodstream and cause a potentially fatal infection.
Even without kidney infection symptoms, you should see your doctor if:
- Your symptoms dont improve after two or three days
- You have had three or more UTIs in the last 12 months
- Youre pregnant
- You have a medical condition or take a medication that suppresses your immune system
What Are The Signs & Symptoms Of Utis
UTIs can cause such signs as:
- pain, burning, or a stinging sensation when peeing
- an increased urge or more frequent need to pee
- waking up at night a lot to go to the bathroom
- belly pain in the area of the bladder
- foul-smelling pee that may look cloudy or contain blood
If you have any symptoms of a UTI, youll need to go to a doctor right away. The sooner you begin treatment, the less uncomfortable youll be. Call your doctors office or clinic. If you cant reach your doctor, you can visit an urgent care center or hospital emergency room. The most important thing is to take action as soon as possible.
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Remedies For Bladder Infections
If you think you have a bladder infection, you should contact your doctor and schedule an outpatient appointment. Youâll need medication to get rid of the bacterial infection. That said, there are home remedies you can also use to help ease symptoms and help with the healing process. Here are five remedies and treatments for bladder infections that you can use:
1. See your doctor for an antibiotic
If youâre diagnosed with a bladder infection, your doctor will likely prescribe an oral antibiotic. Antibiotics work by getting rid of the bacteria that is causing your bladder infection. Research has shown that antibiotics are effective and perform better than a placebo.
You need to complete the full course of the prescribed antibiotic, even when you start to feel better. If you stop the antibiotic before completing the prescription, you risk getting another infection. In an uncomplicated or simple bladder infection, youâll typically notice an improvement in your symptoms within a day or two of starting the antibiotic. Your doctor may select an antibiotic treatment course that will last three to five days. In complicated bladder infections, the course is longer, typically seven to fourteen days.
2. Drink more water
When caring for a bladder infection, itâs critical to drink lots of fluids to help flush the bacteria out of your bladder. The additional fluids also help dilute your urine, which can make urinating less painful while youâre healing from the infection.
Avoid Bladder Irritating Foods When You Have A Uti
Certain foods are known bladder irritants citrus or very acidic foods, artificial sweeteners, caffeine, alcohol these can all irritate the bladder, leading to bladder leaks. And, if you currently have a UTI, they may affect you even more. Try to watch out for these common bladder irritants to prevent further irritation to your bladder and UTI.
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What Are The Causes Of This Frightening Evolution
The most important cause is that there has been a massive overuse of antibiotics worldwide across all ecosystems over the past decades, including humans, animals, aquaculture, and agriculture .
When selected silently by antibiotics, a hidden cross-transmission of resistant bacteria occurs daily, both in hospitals and communities. Compliance with hand hygiene practices is far from optimal in many healthcare settings, including hospitals and long-term care facilities , thus resulting in a continuous succession of small-size transmission events difficult to detect, as well as large outbreaks. Exchange of resistant bacteria via travel activities and patient transfers has led to a rapidly growing resistance globalization as recently exemplified by the spread of NDM-1 . As a consequence, some countries recommend the preemptive isolation of patients admitted from outside their borders based on a suspicion of MDRO carriage in the same philosophy as the Search and Destroy programme in The Netherlands . Cross-transmission occurs also in community settings . Finally, hospital and community wastewater systems are an additional source for the dissemination of resistant bacteria.
Drink Plenty Of Fluids
Dehydration is linked to an increased risk of UTIs.
This is because regular urination can help flush bacteria from the urinary tract to prevent infection. When youre dehydrated, you arent urinating as often, which can create a breeding ground for bacteria.
A examined nursing home residents and administered a drinking schedule to participants to increase their fluid intake. Following the schedule decreased UTIs requiring antibiotics by 56%.
In a 2020 randomized control trial , 140 premenopausal participants prone to UTIs took part in a 12-month study to test if a higher fluid intake would decrease their risk of recurrent cystitis and, in turn, their risk of developing a UTI. Researchers found that an increase in fluid intake led to a decrease in UTI frequency.
To stay hydrated and meet your fluid needs, its best to drink water throughout the day and always when youre thirsty.
Benefits of drinking more fluids for UTI
Drinking plenty of liquids can decrease your risk of UTIs by making you pee more, which helps remove bacteria from your urinary tract.
evidence suggests that increasing your intake of vitamin C could protect against UTIs.
Vitamin C is thought to work by increasing the acidity of urine, killing off the bacteria that cause infection.
An older 2007 study of UTIs in pregnant women looked at the effects of taking 100 milligrams of vitamin C every day.
Fruits and vegetables are especially high in vitamin C and are a good way to increase your intake.
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What Tests Diagnose The Cause Of Sinus Infections And Sinusitis
Sinus infection is most often diagnosed based on the history and examination of a doctor. Because plain X-ray studies of the sinuses may be misleading and procedures such as CT and MRI scans, which are much more sensitive in their ability to diagnose a sinus infection, are so expensive and not available in most doctors offices, most sinus infections are initially diagnosed and treated based on clinical findings on examination. These physical findings may include:
- redness and swelling of the nasal passages,
- purulent drainage from the nasal passages ,
- tenderness to percussion over the cheeks or forehead region of the sinuses, and
- swelling about the eyes and cheeks.
Occasionally, nasal secretions are examined for secreted cells that may help differentiate between infectious and allergic sinusitis. Infectious sinusitis may show specialized cells of infection while allergic sinusitis may show specialized white blood cells of allergy . Physicians prescribe antibiotics if the bacterial infection is suspected. Antibiotics are not effective against viral infections many physicians then treat the symptoms.
In addition, both rigid and flexible endoscopy has been used to obtain diagnostic material from sinuses. These procedures are usually done by an otolaryngologist under topical and local anesthesia. Occasionally, there may be a need to sedate the patient. Some investigators suggest that endoscopy specimens are comparable to those obtained by needle puncture.
According To Urologists It Could Take A Weeklonger If You Have A Severe Case Or Certain Underlying Conditions
Joni Sweet is a freelance writer and editor who specializes in travel, health, and wellness. Her work has been published by Health, SELF, Healthline, National Geographic, Forbes, Lonely Planet, Thrillist, and dozens of other publications. When shes not traveling the world, she can be found practicing yoga, riding her bike, and looking for the best vegetarian food in the Hudson Valley.
Symptoms of a urinary tract infection can feel like they go on forever. After all, time doesn’t exactly move at a fast clip when you’re constantly running to the bathroom and it feels like you’re peeing red-hot razor blades. But how long does a typical UTI last?
The answer: It depends. If you’ve got a UTI in your bladder , you’re looking at anywhere from one to seven days, said Jennifer A. Linehan, MD, a urologist and associate professor of urologic oncology at the Saint John’s Cancer Institute at Providence Saint John’s Health Center in Santa Monica, California.
“But if you have a kidney infection, it will take 14 days to treat,” added Dr. Linehan.
Let’s take a closer look at how long it takes for a UTI to clear up, along with some tips on finding relief ASAP.
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