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.
Beverages To Avoid With Uti
When you see your doctor about a potential UTI, they will first test your urine for bacteria. If the lab results come back positive for a UTI, a round of antibiotics are often the first line of defense. Additionally, your doctor will likely recommend several lifestyle modifications that may help ease the symptoms while the antibiotics are doing their work.
According to the Mayo Clinic, avoiding drinks that can irritate your bladder may help ease the pain from a UTI. Some of the top culprits include alcohol, coffee, soft drinks and citrus juices like grapefruit and orange juice. The acid in citrus drinks tends to irritate the bladder. You should also avoid anything with caffeine.
In addition to irritating your bladder, drinks such as coffee and alcohol can actually stimulate your bladder, causing you to make urgent and more frequent trips to the bathroom to get rid of the fluids youre consuming.
Plus, beverages like alcohol can also increase your risk of dehydration, which complicates the symptoms of a UTI. Repeated bouts of dehydration may also trigger a UTI, according to the Mayo Clinic.
In most cases, the best treatment for a urinary tract infection is a course of antibiotics. Antibiotics are prescription medications that kill bacteria that cause the infection.
Use Essential Oils With Caution
Oregano essential oil is well known for its strong antibacterial properties. Studies have shown that oregano oil can be very effective at killing E.coli, but it should be noted these studies are generally done in vitromeaning in a lab using scientific techniques, not performed in humans with infections. Lemongrass oil and clove oil may also be a home remedy for UTIs because of their antimicrobial properties, but both have been studied against harmful bacteria in similar experiments as Oregano oil.
Its important to take care before using essential oils as a treatment. The National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy advises against ingesting these oils. Instead, essential oils may be safely used topically with a carrier oil or inhaled from a diffuser.
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How Are Utis Diagnosed
Only a health care provider can treat urinary tract infections. The first thing a doctor will do is confirm that a person has a UTI by taking a clean-catch urine specimen. At the doctor’s office, you’ll be asked to clean your genital area with disposable wipes and then pee into a sterile cup.
The sample may be used for a urinalysis or a urine culture . Knowing what bacteria are causing the infection can help your doctor choose the best treatment.
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:
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Jazzee Naturals Higher Extra Strength Dosage
Another great over the counter UTI medicine is Jazzee Naturals D-Mannose Healthy Urinary Tract Support. This product is also an all-natural remedy that seeks to improve urinary tract health and fight off infections. The product incorporates mannose into its formula as well, however the concentration is slightly less potent that the previous item.
The product works by cleansing the system to encourage the body to expel whatever bacteria caused the infection. While this is a very effective method for ridding the body of foreign particles, it also causes much more urination. This, coupled with the already strong urge to urinate associated with UTI, can be troubling for some users.
A Pharmacist Can Help With Utis
You can ask a pharmacist about treatments for a UTI.
A pharmacist can:
- offer advice on things that can help you get better
- suggest the best painkiller to take
- tell you if you need to see a GP about your symptoms
Some pharmacies offer a UTI management service. They may be able to give antibiotics if they’re needed.
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Cloudy Urine Or Blood In Urine
You may also see a small amount of blood in your urine. Sometimes this occurs from something as harmless as a strenuous workout. It could also be a sign of cystitis, bladder cancer, or another urinary tract problem.
Often, blood in urine can only be seen under a microscope. If you can see blood in your urine yourself or notice your urine turning cloudy, see your doctor, even if you have no other symptoms yet. It can be a sign of several potentially serious conditions. Its best to get an early diagnosis sooner rather than later.
The Best Natural Remedies For Bladder Infections
Bladder infections are more common than you think. In fact, roughly 1 out of every 2 women will get a bladder infection in their lifetime.
Also known as urinary tract infections , bladder infections are commonly caused by E. coli bacterium. Symptoms include frequent and painful urination. In the worst cases, patients see blood in their urine and have pain in the abdominal area.
Read on to learn how to treat bladder infections without traditional medicine. Explore 7 of the best natural remedies for bladder infections.
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Check If It’s A Urinary Tract Infection
Symptoms of a urinary tract infection may include:
- pain or a burning sensation when peeing
- needing to pee more often than usual during the night
- pee that looks cloudy, dark or has a strong smell
- needing to pee suddenly or more urgently than usual
- needing to pee more often than usual
- lower tummy pain or pain in your back, just under the ribs
- a high temperature, or feeling hot and shivery
- a very low temperature below 36C
Can Urinary Tract Infections Be Prevented
These steps may help reduce the chance of getting UTIs:
- Drink plenty of water every day.
- Drink cranberry juice. Large amounts of vitamin C limit the growth of some bacteria by acidifying the urine. Vitamin C supplements have the same effect.
- Urinate when you feel the need. Do not wait.
- Females, wipe from front to back to keep bacteria around the anus from going in the vagina or urethra.
- Take showers instead of tub baths.
- Clean the genital area before and after sex, and urinate shortly after sex.
- Women should not use feminine hygiene sprays or scented douches.
- Cotton underwear and loose fitting clothes help keep the area around the urethra dry. Tight clothes and nylon underwear trap moisture. This can help bacteria grow.
- Repeated bouts of urinary tract infections can be treated with small doses of regular antibiotics.
Please consult your health care provider with any questions or concerns you may have about UTIs.
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How Is A Bladder Infection Diagnosed
Bladder infections are usually diagnosed with a urine test.
- Urinalysis, which checks for white blood cells in the urine that can be a sign of infection
- Urine culture, which uses a sample of urine to try and grow bacteria in a laboratory to identify the type of bacteria causing the UTI and determine which antibiotics would be effective against that bacteria
In people who have recurrent bladder infections, additional testing may be indicated to check for abnormalities in the kidneys, ureter, bladder, or urethra, or for kidney stones. Tests may include:
- Computed tomography scan
What Causes A Bladder Infection
Bladder infections are caused when bacteria get into the urethra and travel up into the bladder. Bladder infections are more common in women, likely due to the shorter distance from the anus to the urethra.
Risk factors for developing bladder infections include:
- Frequent or recent sexual intercourse
- Use of spermicide-coated condoms, diaphragms, or spermicides alone for birth control
- Conditions such as kidney stones or ureteral reflux that block or change the flow of urine in the kidneys
- Structural or functional urinary tract abnormalities
- A genetic predisposition to UTIs
- For men, not being circumcised or having insertive anal sex
- Wiping the bottom from back to front after having a bowel movement
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Hormone Replacement Therapy As A Uti Treatment
Sometimes, postmenopausal women find vaginal estrogen therapy helpful in preventing bladder infections since the lowered estrogen levels after menopause cause changes to and an overall thinning of the tissues in the urinary tract, making you more susceptible to infection. It appears that estrogen therapy may help strengthen urinary tract tissue and trigger the release of natural antimicrobial proteins found in the bladder.
Signs And Symptoms Of Cystitis
The main symptoms of cystitis include:
- pain, burning or stinging when you pee
- needing to pee more often and urgently than normal
- urine that’s dark, cloudy or strong smelling
- pain low down in your tummy
- feeling generally unwell, achy, sick and tired
Possible symptoms in young children include a high temperature of 38C or above, weakness, irritability, reduced appetite and vomiting.
Read more about treating cystitis
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Practice Good Hygiene After Sex And Ask Your Partner To Too
Overall health with increased water intake and exercise is the best way to improve health and help with decreasing UTIs, Dr. Shepherd shares. This includes good hygiene and being diligent about cleaning all of your lady parts. And make sure your partner does, too. Bacteria from sexual intercourse is one of the most common ways women can get a UTI, Dr. Shepherd explains.
Cystitis In Men And Older People
Men tend to get cystitis later in life. Where trouble with urine flow is a symptom, this may indicate that the underlying cause is a problem with their prostate gland.
Cystitis is common in older people, particularly if they are unwell. Bladder catheters and some urinary-tract operations may also increase the risk of cystitis.
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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.
Cut Bladder Irritants From Your Diet
When you have a UTI, caffeine, alcohol, spicy food, nicotine, carbonated drinks, and artificial sweeteners can irritate your bladder further, making it harder for your body to heal, according to the Cleveland Clinic. Focus on healthy foods, such as high-fiber carbohydrates , that are good for your digestive health, says Holly Lucille, ND, RN, a naturopathic doctor in private practice in West Hollywood, California, and the author of Creating and Maintaining Balance: A Womans Guide to Safe, Natural Hormone Health.
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Foods For Kidney Infection
Many kidney infections begin as urinary tract infections , points out the Cleveland Clinic. About 60 percent of women will get this often painful, uncomfortable condition. Theres a myth that cranberry juice or cranberry supplements will help treat UTIs, as the Cleveland Clinic notes.
There is an active ingredient in cranberries that can prevent adherence of bacteria to the bladder wall, particularly E. coli, said urologist Courtenay Moore, MD in an article on the Cleveland Clinics website. But most of the studies have shown that juice and supplements dont have enough of this active ingredient, A-type proanthocyanidins , to prevent bacteria from sticking to the urinary tract.
One of the best things you can do if you have a kidney infection, besides taking antibiotics, is drink several glasses of water and other fluids. According to the Mayo Clinic, drinking several glasses of fluids a day may discourage bacteria growth by flushing out your urinary tract.
Fruits and vegetables often have a high water content, the Mayo Clinic states. This helps boost your water intake, which keeps your kidneys healthy even when youre not drinking plain water. Plus you have the added benefit of more nutrition from fruits and veggies.
Medically reviewed by Dr. Nick Rosen, MD on February 1st, 2021
Skip Citrusy Or Caffeinated Sodas Irritate The Bladder
Sodas in general have been found to irritate the bladder in people with chronic bladder inflammation, and they could aggravate symptoms in someone with a bladder infection. Citrus-flavored sodas and caffeinated sodas are the culprits when it comes to worsening urinary tract infection symptoms. So, when youre struggling to overcome a bladder infection, stick to water or cranberry juice as your drink of choice.
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What Is The Long
Urinary tract infections are uncomfortable and painful. Most chronic UTIs will resolve with a prolonged course of antibiotics, but monitoring for further symptoms is important since the chronic UTIs usually recur. People with UTIs should monitor their bodies and seek immediate treatment with the onset of a new infection. Early treatment of infection decreases your risk for more serious, long-term complications.
If youre susceptible to recurring UTIs, make sure to:
- urinate as often as needed
- wipe front to back after urinating
When To See A Doctor For A Uti
Always go to your primary care physician immediately if there is blood in the urine, if you have a fever, and/or low back pain with your UTI symptoms, Sajdak advises. UTIs can move fast, so its better to go sooner than later.
Although natural remedies can be beneficial for alleviating UTI symptoms and preventing recurrent UTIs, they may not be effective in treating the infection.
If symptoms still persist after three days then it is time to move on to antibiotics, says Ivy Branin, ND, a naturopathic doctor in New York City who specializes in womens health. I often recommend a patient to see their doctor for a UA and a prescription for antibiotics just in case and to fill it if they have no improvement after three days.
Leaving a UTI untreated can cause additional health problems. Bacteria can reach the ureters or kidneys and cause kidney infections. Untreated UTIs during pregnancy can also potentially cause early labor and low birth weight. Seeking treatment for UTI that isnt going awayor one that keeps coming backis always a good thing.
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Urinary Tract Infection Treatment Products At Walgreens
Urinary tract infections are infections that occur when bacteria enter a persons urethra and infect the urinary tract. UTIs can be painful and uncomfortable and may require medical care. Most UTIs can be treated at home with antibiotics from your healthcare provider, and symptoms may be eased with certain pain-relief products. Walgreens offers options to detect infections and prevent or ease symptoms, such as UTI test strips, urinary pain relief tablets and chewable cranberry tablets.
Urinate When The Need Arises
Frequent urination puts pressure on bacteria in the urinary tract, which can help to clear them out.
It also reduces the amount of time that bacteria in the urine are exposed to cells in the urinary tract, reducing the risk of them attaching and forming an infection.
Always urinate as soon as possible when the urge strikes to and treat UTIs.
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How Is A Chronic Urinary Tract Infection Diagnosed
If you have a chronic UTI, you probably had a UTI in the past.
Performing lab tests on a sample of urine is the most common method doctors use to diagnose UTIs. A medical professional will examine the sample of urine under a microscope, looking for signs of bacteria.
In a urine culture test, a technician places a urine sample in a tube to encourage the growth of bacteria. After one to three days, theyll look at the bacteria to determine the best treatment.
If your doctor suspects kidney damage, they may order X-rays and kidney scans. These imaging devices take pictures of parts inside your body.
If you have recurring UTIs, your doctor may want to perform a cystoscopy. In this procedure, theyll use a cystoscope. Its a long, thin tube with a lens at the end used to look inside your urethra and bladder. Your doctor will look for any abnormalities or issues that could cause the UTI to keep coming back.
How Do Health Care Professionals Treat A Bladder Infection
If you have a bladder infection caused by bacteria, a health care professional is likely to prescribe antibiotics. If the diagnosis is not certain, based on your symptoms or lab test results, you may not need antibiotics. Instead, your health care professional will work to find the cause and the best treatment for your symptoms.
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