Symptoms Of Urinary Tract Infections
How do you know if you have a UTI? Well, sometimes there are actually no symptoms at all and other times you will experience some pretty noticeable signs.
The most common symptoms associated with UTIs are:
- Strong, persistent need to urinate
- Burning sensation when urinating
- Urine with a strong odor
- Urinating small amounts frequently
- Pain in the pelvic area, particularly for women
If the infection has made it to your kidneys, you might have one or more of these symptoms:
- Pain located below the ribs in your back or side
If you think you have a UTI, especially if you think that its become a kidney infection, its important to see your doctor. They can rule out the cause and prescribe you antibacterial or antibiotic drugs to kill off the bacteria.
Can I Prevent A Urinary Tract Infection
You can usually prevent a urinary tract infection with lifestyle changes. These tips can include:
In some post-menopausal women, a healthcare provider may suggest an estrogen-containing vaginal cream. This may reduce the risk of developing a UTI by changing the pH of the vagina. Talk to your healthcare provider if you have recurrent UTIs and have already gone through menopause.
Over-the-counter supplements are also available for UTIs. These are sometimes recommended for people who have frequent UTIs as another way to prevent them. Talk to your healthcare provider before starting any supplements and ask if these could be a good choice for you.
What Are The Symptoms Of A Bladder Infection Vs A Uti
Symptoms can offer clues about whether you’ve got a bladder infection specifically or a UTI somewhere else in your system. Regardless of which type you have, you’re likely to have some or all of the most common UTI symptoms, which MedlinePlus says includes:
- Pain or burning when you urinate
- Fever, tiredness, or shakiness
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Check If It’s A Urinary Tract Infection
Symptoms of a UTI may include:
- pain or a burning sensation when peeing
- needing to pee more often than usual during the night
- pee that looks cloudy
- 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
What To Do When Home Remedies Do Not Provide Permanent Relief
If the home remedies fail to bring you the desired results or the UTI flares up again, do not take it casually. Be very proactive and consult a specialist doctor for proper diagnosis and medications.Complete the course of antibiotics that your doctor prescribes and go for timely follow-ups until you are absolutely fine.
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Top 5 Natural Remedies For Urinary Tract Infections
Disclaimer: Results are not guaranteed*** and may vary from person to person***.
Urinary tract infections can be very frustrating. You might take antibiotics to get rid of them, but they keep coming back againand againand again. What can you do?
Well, when a UTI keeps occurring, some simple changes in your diet may make a difference. There are a variety of foods that irritate the gallbladder that can lead to UTIs.
If you already have a UTI, then youre not out of luck yet. There are a variety of natural remedies for urinary tract infections that can be done at home. You will not only get rid of your UTIs you will keep them away too!
Other Ways To Prevent Recurring Utis
If you have more than 3 UTIs in 1 year, or 2 UTIs in 6 months, there are other things that may help prevent UTIs.
There is some evidence that women under 65 years old who keep getting UTIs may find it helpful to take:
- a supplement called D-mannose this is not recommended for pregnant women
- cranberry products, such as juice or tablets
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.
Page last reviewed: 18 November 2020 Next review due: 18 November 2023
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Why Do Women Get Urinary Tract Infections More Often Than Men
Women tend to get urinary tract infections more often than men because bacteria can reach the bladder more easily in women. The urethra is shorter in women than in men, so bacteria have a shorter distance to travel.
The urethra is located near the rectum in women. Bacteria from the rectum can easily travel up the urethra and cause infections. Bacteria from the rectum is more likely to get into the urethra if you wipe from back to front after a bowel movement. Be sure to teach children how to wipe correctly.
Having sex may also cause urinary tract infections in women because bacteria can be pushed into the urethra. Using a diaphragm can lead to infections because diaphragms push against the urethra and make it harder to completely empty your bladder. The urine that stays in the bladder is more likely to grow bacteria and cause infections.
Frequent urinary tract infections may be caused by changes in the bacteria in the vagina. Antibacterial vaginal douches, spermicides, and certain oral antibiotics may cause changes in vaginal bacteria. Avoid using these items, if possible. Menopause can also cause changes in vaginal bacteria that increase your risk for urinary tract infection. Taking estrogen usually corrects this problem but may not be for everyone.
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 and can prescribe antibiotics if they’re needed.
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What Studies Say About Urinary Tract Infections
Okay, before we get to this amazing find, lets review what we know about UTIs. According to the National Institute of Kidney and Urologic Diseases Information Clearinghouse , a UTI is the second-most common infection in the human body. Anyone can get one, but women seem to be more at risk.
UTIs can be a serious problem. According to recent research, women with UTI infections are at a higher risk of dying or having complications if they develop bladder cancer. Symptoms are often believed to be due to the UTI and the bladder cancer is not diagnosed until it is too late.
However, other studies have some good news. One study of over 28,000 women found that if women with recurrent UTIs could find out the cause of their UTIs, they can simply eliminate whatever is causing the UTIs and easily avoid antibiotic-use or expensive medical care. The studys findings are good news, as they mean that women do not have to suffer with repeated hospital visits or frequent UTIs.
How Common Are Urinary Tract Infections
Urinary tract infections are very common, occurring in 1 out of 5 women sometime in their lifetime. Though UTIs are common in women, they can also happen to men, older adults and children. One to 2% of children develop urinary tract infections. Each year, 8 million to 10 million visits to doctors are for urinary tract infections.
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Living With Urinary Tract Infections
If you have 3 or more urinary tract infections each year, your doctor may want you to begin a preventive antibiotic program. A small dose of an antibiotic taken every day helps to reduce the number of infections. If sexual intercourse seems to cause infections for you, your doctor many suggest taking the antibiotic after intercourse.
Urinary Tract Infection Treatment
If you are a healthy adult man or a woman who is not pregnant, a few days of antibiotic pills will usually cure your urinary tract infection. If you are pregnant, your doctor will prescribe a medicine that is safe for you and the baby. Usually, symptoms of the infection go away 1 to 2 days after you start taking the medicine. Its important that you follow your doctors instructions for taking the medicine, even if you start to feel better. Skipping pills could make the treatment less effective.
Your doctor may also suggest a medicine to numb your urinary tract and make you feel better while the antibiotic starts to work. The medicine makes your urine turn bright orange, so dont be alarmed by the color when you urinate.
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Bladder Infection Diagnosis And Medical Treatment
Diagnosing a UTI usually involves a simple urine test. Your doctor or nurse will check your urine for signs of bacteria. However, if your urine tests clear of bacteria, then your healthcare provider will move on to other diagnostic tests that may include lab work or imaging studies.
Since the vast majority of bladder infections are caused by bacteria, youll likely receive a prescription antibiotic to clear the bacteria from your urinary tract. These drugs are precisely calibrated to work over a defined time frame, so its important you take all of the medication exactly as prescribedeven if your symptoms resolve. If you dont take all the medicine, you run the risk of leaving pathogenic bacteria in your system. You might relieve your symptoms without actually destroying all the bacteria. In that case, your symptoms will return quickly.
Questions To Ask Your Doctor
- Do I need any tests, such as urinalysis?
- What is the likely cause of my urinary tract infection ?
- Do I need medicine? How should I take it?
- What are the possible side effects of the medicine?
- When should I expect relief from my symptoms?
- What symptoms would indicate that my infection is getting worse? What should I do if I experience these symptoms?
- I get UTIs a lot. What can I do to prevent them?
- Do I need preventive antibiotics? If so, should I be concerned about antibiotic resistance?
- My child gets UTIs a lot. Could an anatomical problem be causing his or her UTIs?
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What Are The Signs Of Utis In Dogs
Urinary tract disease can include kidney, ureters, urethra and bladder infection.
While were using a female dog example below remember that male dogs can get UTIs too! Typical symptoms of UTIs in dogs of either gender include:
- Frequent urination or urging.
- Bloody urine. Sometimes you may see a little blood at the very end. Other times there might be a blood clot. Sometimes its hardly noticeable. Get your dog to pee on a paper towel to see if theres blood present.
- Licking before or after she urinates.
- Inappropriate urination or accidents in the house.
- General restlessness.
- Needing to go out during the night.
- Trying to pee again right after shes peed. You may see her try a few times and appear to squat or strain a few different ways. This is due to difficult flow of urine.
- Signs of painful urination.
When untreated, UTIs can lead to bigger problems, including stones, dysfunction, infertility, kidney infection, and even kidney failure.
Other Types Of Urinary Tract Problems In Cats
UTI’s aren’t the only type of urinary tract problem in cats. More commonly, cats develop inflammation or stones.
- Urine Crystals – Crystals can be problematic because they can develop into troublesome bladder stones. There are several different types of urine crystals.
- Bladder Stones – Multiple different types of bladder stones exist and sometimes bacteria contributes to their formation. Small stones can cause a cat to be obstructed and unable to urinate which is why they are life threatening.
- Urinary Tract Inflammation – Also referred to as cystitis, inflammation can be dangerous in a cat. The urethra may swell and cause a cat to be unable to urinate which can be fatal.
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About Urinary Tract Infections
Urinary tract infections are common infections that can affect the bladder, the kidneys and the tubes connected to them.
Anyone can get them, but they’re particularly common in women. Some women experience them regularly .
UTIs can be painful and uncomfortable, but usually pass within a few days and can be easily treated with antibiotics.
This page is about UTIs in adults. There is a separate article about UTIs in children.
This page covers:
Why Some Women Get Recurrent Utis
The infections are usually caused by Escherichia coli, a bacterium that lives in the intestinal system. If E. coli are carried from the rectum to the vagina, they can enter the urethra and infect the bladder.
Risk factors for UTI vary with age. Before menopause, the most common risk factors are sexual intercourse and use of spermicides. It’s thought that sex increases the number of bacteria in the bladder, and many experts advise women to urinate after sex to flush them out. Spermicides may kill off Lactobacilli, beneficial bacteria in the vagina, making it easier for E. coli to move in.
After menopause, certain physical changes help set the stage for UTIs. The numbers of Lactobacilli in the vagina naturally decline. The bladder also contracts less strongly than it once did, making it more difficult to empty it completely.
In both premenopausal and postmenopausal women, genes play a role as well. Having a mother or sister who has frequent UTIs is also a risk factor.
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Other Things To Remember For Faster Relief From Urinary Tract Infections
- Spicy and pungent foods can cause more irritation and inflammation of the urethra
- Avoid having caffeinated and carbonated drinks such as coffee, colas, etc.
- Practice abstinence from alcohol.
- Regular exercising and staying clean greatly reduces symptoms of any UTI
- Artificial sweeteners can promote the growth of harmful bacteria in the urinary tract.
- Change the underwear every day or if required, twice a day.
- Avoid wearing synthetic underwear, choose cotton ones for comfort.
Does Cranberry Juice Cure Utis
Cranberry juice and cranberry extract have been commonly used to treat and prevent UTIs and while cranberry certainly cant hurt and can help, its not a one and done solution for UTIs. There isnt a common consensus on whether or not cranberry actually reduces the number of UTIs a woman gets as studies have shown both that and the opposite. Dont expect that cranberry will cure a UTI without antibiotics. But if the pain is unbearable before you can get to the doctor, it can provide some relief.
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How Are Utis Treated
UTIs are treated with antibiotics. After several days of antibiotics, your doctor may repeat the urine tests to be sure that the infection is gone. It’s important to make sure of this because an incompletely treated UTI can come back or spread.
If a child has severe pain when peeing, the doctor may also prescribe medicine that numbs the lining of the urinary tract.
Give prescribed antibiotics on schedule for as many days as your doctor directs. Keep track of your child’s trips to the bathroom, and ask your child about symptoms like pain or burning during peeing. These symptoms should improve within 2 to 3 days after antibiotics are started.
Encourage your child to drink plenty of fluids, but skip drinks that containe caffeine , such as soda and iced tea.
Most UTIs are cured within a week with treatment.
How To Treat Utis
If you think you have a UTI, the first thing you should do is schedule an appointment with your OBGYN or primary care physician. Many women will try to self-treat it, or worse, just hope it goes away on its own. And while some minor UTIs do go away on their own, its best to see a doctor and have them diagnose and treat it as the infection can spread to other parts of your body and be dangerous.
Your doctor will take a urine sample which will allow them to diagnose it right then and there, meaning youll leave the office with an answer and a solution! Well choose an antibiotic based on the type of bacteria you have, taking into account other factors like pregnancy, allergies, other medications, and medical history. Now all you have to do is take the full cycle of treatment to make sure the infection is completely gone.
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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.