Urinary Tract Infections And The Pelvic Floor
Many people are unfortunately quite familiar with the typical symptoms of a urinary tract infection. Most commonly, they include pain or burning while urinating, increased frequency and urgency of urination, cloudy or strong smelling urine, abdominal or low back pain and possibly blood in the urine. Urinary tract infections are caused by bacteria entering the urinary tract, and infections can occur in the urethra, bladder, or kidney. There are many different types of bacteria that can cause urinary tract infections but the most common is Escherichia coli . E. Coli is found in our digestive systems and can spread to the to urinary tract and cause infection. The presence of urinary tract infections are typically identified by taking and testing a urine sample. The urine sample will be analyzed for the presence of bacteria, red blood cells and white blood cells. Sometimes the urine sample is also sent for a lab culture, which will help identify which type of bacteria is causing the infection. A course of antibiotics is the typical treatment for urinary tract infections. With an uncomplicated infection, symptoms should clear up within a few days of taking the prescribed antibiotics.
Home Remedies For Itching And Burning When Urinating
In addition to treatment provided by your doctor, there are a number of home remedies that can help eliminate this burning sensation when urinating. These home remedies can also help to speed up your recovery in addition providing you with some relief. Among these, are some natural options to help cure a urine infection quickly and promote the elimination of microorganisms present in the bladder
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What About Drinking Cranberry Juice
Cranberry juice is not a treatment for urinary tract infections, says Dr. Shepherd. While its unlikely to be harmful, a meta-analysis of studies that looked at the use of cranberry juice in more than 2,000 people showed that it didnt reduce the chance of getting a urinary tract infection in comparison with water, placebo or nothing at all . And what about probiotics? Tried and tested but, unfortunately, probiotics havent been proven effective in reducing the frequency of recurrent UTIs or treating existing UTIs either .
So when it comes to getting quick relief, your best bet is to see a healthcare provider and get a prescription for antibiotics and Azo for pain relief. And in the long term? Make sure to take steps to avoid getting UTIs in the future.
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Drink Lots Of Water And Empty Your Bladder Often
According to Chicago-based OB/GYN, Jessica Shepherd, MD, drinking lots of water when you are experiencing UTI symptoms can help flush away the bacteria. Draining your bladder frequently is essential to getting rid of the bacteria, Dr. Shepherd explains. The more water you drink, the more youll have to relieve yourself.
How Are Urinary Tract Infections Diagnosed
Your doctor will use the following tests to diagnose a urinary tract infection:
- Urinalysis: This test will examine the urine for red blood cells, white blood cells and bacteria. The number of white and red blood cells found in your urine can actually indicate an infection.
- Urine culture: A urine culture is used to determine the type of bacteria in your urine. This is an important test because it helps determine the appropriate treatment.
If your infection does not respond to treatment or if you keep getting infections over and over again, your doctor may use the following tests to examine your urinary tract for disease or injury:
- Ultrasound: In this test, sound waves create an image of the internal organs. This test is done on top of your skin, is painless and doesnt typically need any preparation.
- Cystoscopy: This test uses a special instrument fitted with a lens and a light source to see inside the bladder from the urethra.
- CT scan: Another imaging test, a CT scan is a type of X-ray that takes cross sections of the body . This test is much more precise than typical X-rays.
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Other Ways To Prevent Some Utis Coming Back
If you keep getting a bladder infection , there is some evidence it may be helpful to take:
- D-mannose a sugar you can buy as a powder or tablets to take every day
- cranberry products available as juice, tablets or capsules to take every day
Speak to your doctor before taking any of these during pregnancy.
Be aware that D-mannose and cranberry products can contain a lot of sugar.
If you’re taking warfarin, you should avoid cranberry products.
Page last reviewed: 22 March 2022 Next review due: 22 March 2025
How Are Urinary Tract Infections Treated
You will need to treat a urinary tract infection. Antibiotics are medicines that kill bacteria and fight an infection. Antibiotics are typically used to treat urinary tract infections. Your healthcare provider will pick a drug that best treats the particular bacteria thats causing your infection. Some commonly used antibiotics can include:
Its very important that you follow your healthcare providers directions for taking the medicine. Dont stop taking the antibiotic because your symptoms go away and you start feeling better. If the infection is not treated completely with the full course of antibiotics, it can return.
If you have a history of frequent urinary tract infections, you may be given a prescription for antibiotics that you would take at the first onset of symptoms. Other patients may be given antibiotics to take every day, every other day, or after sexual intercourse to prevent the infection. Talk to your healthcare provider about the best treatment option for you if you have a history of frequent UTIs.
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Practice Healthy Hygiene Habits
Preventing UTIs starts with practicing a few good bathroom and hygiene habits.
First, its important not to hold your urine for too long. This can lead to a buildup of bacteria, resulting in infection.
Peeing after sexual intercourse can also of UTIs by preventing the spread of bacteria.
Additionally, those who are prone to UTIs should avoid using spermicide, as it has been linked to an increase in UTIs.
Finally, when using the toilet especially if you have a female urethra make sure you wipe front to back. Wiping from back to front can to the urinary tract and is associated with an increased risk of UTIs.
Benefits of healthy hygiene for UTI
Urinating frequently and after sexual intercourse can reduce the risk of UTI. Careful wiping when you use the toilet may also help decrease the risk of UTI.
Several natural supplements may decrease the risk of developing a UTI.
Here are a few supplements that have been studied and are all available in capsule form:
- D-Mannose.D-Mannose is a type of sugar that is found in cranberries. Research suggests its effective in treating UTIs and preventing recurrence.
- Cranberry extract. Like cranberry juice, cranberry extract works by preventing bacteria from adhering to the urinary tract.
- Garlic extract. shows garlic and garlic extract to have antimicrobial properties, so they it may be able to block the growth of bacteria to prevent UTIs.
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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Take An Otc Medication
Phenazopyridine hydrochloride is a pain reliever for the urinary tract and can be purchased over the counter in generic form or as the brand name drug AZO. This medication temporarily relieves urinary urgency, pain, and pressure associated with UTIs. However, it doesnt treat the underlying infection.
Avoid Food And Beverages That May Irritate The Bladder
The most common bladder irritants are alcohol, caffeinated drinks, carbonated beverages, and spicy dishes.
Both caffeine and alcohol have been found to increase bladder spasming, which can make UTI pain worse. And when men and women increased their intake of coffee or soda, they had higher chances of getting UTI symptoms.
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Home Remedies For Utis
When bacteria enter the urinary tract system, it can cause a urinary tract infection. Bacteria, and specifically Escherichia coli , is the most common cause of UTIs, but dehydration, holding urination for a long time, certain health conditions, and hormonal changes can also cause a UTI or increase your risk of infection. The average UTI can last anywhere from a few days to more than a week. Some UTIs will go away on their own, but more severe cases require medical attention. With antibiotic treatment, many people with severe UTIs start to feel relief within a couple of days. For mild UTIs, home remedies may help alleviate symptoms, and/or prevent infections from developing.
Here are some of the most common home remedies for UTIs:
How Can I Get Instant Relief From A Uti
Urinary tract infections are super common. More than half of all women will get a UTI at some point. And while symptoms can range from mild to severe, theyre no walk in the park. If you feel a UTI coming on, you may be wondering how to get that pesky pain or constant need to pee to go away and fast. We spoke with Dr. Jessica Shepherd, an OBGYN and specialist in womens health, to get the whole picture of how to get your UTI symptoms to go away, and stay away.
How Do You Know If You Have A Uti
You cant treat something if you dont know what it is, so how do you know if you have a UTI?
Some of the most common UTI symptoms are:
- Painful, burning urination
- Frequent urge to urinate
- Smelly, cloudy, or red-colored, blood-tinged urine
- Pain in the abdominal area, near your back or your side below the ribs
- Tiredness or weakness
- Shakiness or confusion
Fever and pain in your back may be signs that the infection has reached your kidneys.
To confirm a UTI diagnosis, your doctor may also run a urine test. The results of your test can help confirm whether you have a UTI. While a urine test is one way to know whether you have a UTI, medical evidence also has shown that your doctor can be pretty confident about your diagnosis based on your answers to the questions about symptoms.
Here Are Some Tips To Quickly Deal With Troublesome Uti Symptoms
1. Give yourself a sitz bath.
A sitz bath is a warm and shallow bath for cleansing the genital area, especially the perineum or the area between the rectum and the vulva or scrotum. You can set up a sitz bath on your bath tub. As an alternative, you may also use a kit that fits over the toilet.
Sitz baths are commonly used to relieve skin irritations, itching, and minor pains. If you are not satisfied with a shallow bath, you may immerse in warm water to help relieve your abdominal pain. This can also allow your muscles to relax, helping stop painful spasms.
2. Use a heating pad.
Abdominal cramps and pressure are probably the worst symptoms of UTI, and extreme pain in the abdomen can really prevent you from doing your normal daily routine. Applying a heating pad over your abdomen can ease muscle pain, cramps, and spasms. If you do not have a heating pad, a bottle of hot water or a warm washcloth can also help.
3. Wear cotton and avoid tight-fitting clothes.
Tight pants and underwear can be uncomfortable when you are dealing with abdominal pain and other UTI symptoms. They may also further irritate the genital area, leading to more discomfort and other minor infections. Make sure to wear cotton garments and opt for slightly loose clothing to keep the genital area dry and cool. This can can prevent or reduce bacterial growth.
4. Do urinate often.
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Get Your Fill Of Water And Water
One of the first things to do when you have a urinary tract infection is drink plenty of water. Thats because drinking water can help flush away the bacteria that’s causing your infection, according to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases . It puts you on the right track for recovery.
Most people can be assured theyre getting the water they need by simply drinking water when thirsty, according to the health and medicine division of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. But to be safe, you may want to make sure youre drinking at least six to eight 8-ounce glasses of water each day. General recommendations have suggested that women get about 91 oz of water daily and men get about 125 oz each day, including water from food, as also noted in that group’s report.
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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When To Seek Immediate Medical Attention
UTIs are uncomfortable, but theyre not an immediate medical emergency. Some people make the mistake of assuming the same is true with a kidney infection.
Kidney infections are serious conditions that do require medical attention. Untreated, a kidney infection can quickly cause long-term kidney damage or kidney scarring. These infections can also cause sepsis, which can lead to .
Because of this, a kidney infection can be fatal if it progresses. Its important to have it treated immediately by a healthcare professional.
Note that kidney stones, if left untreated, can also cause a blockage that can lead to infection and sepsis. This may require a procedure done with intravenous antibiotics by a urologist.
Urinary Tract Infections And Self
Shireen N. Farzadeh, PharmD Candidate 2019St. Johns University, College of Pharmacy & Health SciencesQueens, New York
Emily M. Ambizas, PharmD, MPH, BCGPAssociate Clinical ProfessorSt. Johns University, College of Pharmacy & Health SciencesQueens, New YorkClinical Specialist, Rite Aid PharmacyWhitestone, New York
US Pharm. 2017 9:4-7.
Urinary tract infections are the most commonly occurring infections, affecting approximately 150 million people worldwide each year.1 In the United States alone, the societal costs of UTIs are estimated to be $3.5 billion annually.1 UTIs can affect both men and women, but they are especially common in women of childbearing age.2 Most women will experience at least one episode during their lifetime by 32 years of age, more than half of all women will have reported having at least one urinary tract infection.2,3 Almost 25% of women will have a recurrent infection within a year.2
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Consider Switching Birth Control Methods If You Have Repeat Bladder Infections
If you have trouble with repeat bladder infections, talk with a health care professional about your birth control. Consider switching to a new form of birth control if you use diaphragms, unlubricated condoms, or spermicide, all of which can increase your chances of developing a bladder infection. Consider using lubricated condoms without spermicide or using a nonspermicidal lubricant.
Preventive Measures For Urinary Tract Ifections
- Drink lots of water.
- Urinate immediately every time after you have sexual intercourse with your partner.
- Donât hold back urine as it may also cause the bacteria to stick.
- Wear cotton panties.
- Have a balanced and nutritious diet.
- Avoid bathing in a bathtub as it may provide a site for the bacteria to grow
- Avoid douching and scented pads.
- After using the toilet, always wipe in the direction of front to back as this may avoid any germs from getting into the urethral opening.
- Wash your hands properly every time after you use the toilet.
- Avoid alcohol or caffeinated drinks when you are suffering from the UTI.
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How Can I Tell If I Have A Uti
Not all UTIs have obvious symptoms, but signs and symptoms of a possible UTI include the need to urinate often, pain and burning sensations during urination, low fever, nausea, vomiting, feeling ill, and back or abdominal pain. You may also notice that your urine is bloody, cloudy, or odorous.
See your doctor immediately if you think you have a UTI, or ask your pharmacist about purchasing a UTI test kit. If you decide to use the take-home UTI test strips, follow the instructions carefully and be sure to discuss your test results with your doctor.
Sip Some Cranberry Juice
Studies into the effectiveness of cranberry juice for UTI treatment have produced mixed results. However, anecdotal evidence and some small studies indicate that cranberry juice may aid in healing by making it difficult for bacteria to stick to the lining of the urinary tract. If you wish to try this traditional folk remedy, choose a juice that lists cranberries as its first ingredient and is free of artificial sweeteners and added sugar.
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