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.
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.
The Pain Has Become Unbearable What Can You Do
If you either have started taking the antibiotic and it hasnt kicked in yet or you havent gotten to the doctor yet, the pain may still be causing you a lot of discomfort. There are plenty of over-the-counter medications that you can take to relieve the symptoms while youre waiting for your antibiotic to work its magic. Simply consult with your doctor on which option they recommend and pick it up at your nearest drugstore.
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Increase Vitamin C Intake
Some evidence shows that increasing your intake of vitamin C could protect against urinary tract infections.
Vitamin C is thought to work by increasing the acidity of the urine, thereby killing off the bacteria that cause infection .
An older 2007 study of UTIs in pregnant women looked at the effects of taking 100 mg of vitamin C every day .
The study found that vitamin C had a protective effect, cutting the risk of UTIs by more than half in those taking vitamin C, compared with the control group .
Fruits and vegetables are especially high in vitamin C and are a good way to increase your intake.
Red peppers, oranges, grapefruit, and kiwifruit all contain the full recommended amount of vitamin C in just one serving .
Despite these studies, there is still more research needed to prove the effectiveness of vitamin C for reducing UTIs. .
Increasing vitamin C intake may decrease the risk of UTIs by making the urine more acidic, thus killing off infection-causing bacteria.
Drinking unsweetened cranberry juice is one of the most well-known natural remedies for urinary tract infections.
Cranberries work by preventing bacteria from adhering to the urinary tract, thus preventing infection .
In a 2016 study, women with recent histories of UTIs drank an 8-ounce serving of cranberry juice every day for 24 weeks. Those who drank cranberry juice had fewer UTI episodes than the control group .
Is It Safe To Use Over
Yes, but always talk with your doctor or nurse before treating yourself for a vaginal yeast infection. This is because:
- You may be trying to treat an infection that is not a yeast infection. Studies show that two out of three women who buy yeast infection medicine dont really have a yeast infection.2 Instead, they may have an STI or bacterial vaginosis . STIs and BV require different treatments than yeast infections and, if left untreated, can cause serious health problems.
- Using treatment when you do not actually have a yeast infection can cause your body to become resistant to the yeast infection medicine. This can make actual yeast infections harder to treat in the future.
- Some yeast infection medicine may weaken condoms and diaphragms, increasing your chance of getting pregnant or an STI when you have sex. Talk to your doctor or nurse about what is best for you, and always read and follow the directions on the medicine carefully.
UTIs and yeast infections often are mentioned in the same sentence, and understandably so. Theyre both uncomfortable infections, but are they the same thing?
No, they arent, and our AFC Urgent Care Farragut team provides some helpful information on both of these topics below.
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For Those Who Experience Frequent Utis Managing Risk Factors May Help With Prevention
In some people, urinary tract infections come back again and again. Women, especially, are likely to have recurrent UTIs. While recurrences usually develop within three months of the original infection, having more than two within six months is technically considered a recurrence.
Besides precautions and at-home strategies to help prevent UTIs, sometimes antibiotics are used as a preventive measure for those with frequent UTI recurrences.
Managing risk factors by maintaining good hygiene, such as wiping from front to back for women and avoiding spermicides can lower your likelihood of repeat UTIs.
Wipe From Front To Back
According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases , UTIs can develop when bacteria from the rectum or feces gain access to the urethra. This small channel allows urine to flow out of the body.
Once bacteria are in the urethra, they can travel up into other urinary tract organs, where they can lead to infections.
After urinating, wipe in a way that prevents bacteria from coming into contact with the genitals. Use separate pieces of toilet paper to wipe the genitals and anus.
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What Are The Symptoms Of Ic
If you have urinary frequency and urgency, urethral burning, and pelvic pain, you probably have cystitis, which is bladder inflammation. These are pretty common symtoms, but if they don’t go away and no other cause can be found for them, then there is a possibility that it may be interstitial cystitis.
Some people with IC experience UTI-like symptoms constantly while others experience it intermittently. IC can cause pain during intercourse and can be accompanied by other health issues such as irritable bowel syndrome, fibromyalgia, and other pain-related disorders.
Uti Or Yeast Infection: Whats The Difference
Urinary tract infections and yeast infections are two distinct yet common conditions among women that may present with similar symptoms. This can make it tricky to determine which infection is present when symptoms appear, making self-diagnosis not always accurate. Hector Chapa, MD, a Texas A& M College of Medicine OB-GYN, weighs in on the common confusion between the two and how you can help tell the difference.
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Early Intervention Is Key
From my reading and research, it sounds like it’s important to get your symptoms under control early. Dietary changes when you first experience symptoms can prevent your condition from progressing. Patients who have had an irritated bladder for a longer period of time experience less relief from dietary changes.
If it turns out you do have interstitial cystitis, there are medications and treatments that may be beneficial to you.
Can Urinary Tract Infections Be Prevented Or Avoided
There are many lifestyle choices that can help you prevent UTIs. These are some of the things you can do to protect yourself from them:
- Drink plenty of water to flush out bacteria. For some people, drinking cranberry juice may also help prevent urinary tract infections. However, if youre taking warfarin, check with your doctor before using cranberry juice to prevent urinary tract infections. Your doctor may need to adjust your warfarin dose or you may need to have more frequent blood tests.
- Dont hold your urine. Urinate when you feel like you need to. Some children dont go to the bathroom often enough. If your child does this, teach him or her to go to the bathroom several times each day.
- Wipe from front to back after bowel movements. Teach your child to wipe correctly.
- Urinate after having sex to help wash away bacteria.
- Use enough lubrication during sex. Try using a small amount of lubricant before sex if youre a little dry.
- If you get urinary tract infections often, you may want to avoid using a diaphragm as a birth control method. Ask your doctor about other birth control choices.
- Avoid taking or giving your child bubble baths.
- Wear loose-fitting clothing , and dress your child in loose-fitting clothing.
- If you are uncircumcised, wash the foreskin regularly. If you have an uncircumcised boy, teach him how to wash his foreskin.
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Eating Diet & Nutrition
Experts dont think eating, diet, and nutrition play a role in preventing or treating bladder infections. If you have any type of UTI, talk with a health care professional about how much to drink each day to help prevent or relieve your infection.
The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases and other components of the National Institutes of Health conduct and support research into many diseases and conditions.
Common Questions & Answers
UTI symptoms can be uncomfortable or painful. They include the following:
- A strong urge to urinate
- Pain or burning during urination
- Passing small amounts of urine
- Cloudy, strong-smelling, red or pink urine
- Mucus or discharge
- Fever, shaking, chills, or pain in the upper back, side, or groin
What To Do If You Have A Urinary Tract Infection
Burning, pressure, frequent urination. These are common symptoms in women with urinary tract infections, also called bladder infections.
If you believe you have a UTI consider taking the following steps:
- Make an appointment with a doctor
- Receive your UTI diagnosis
- Stick to your doctors treatment plan
Appointments as low as $20.
Use our cost checker to see what you’ll pay
Urologists Are Experts At Diagnosing Utis
Urologists are specialists of the female urinary tract and male genitourinary tract. Our entire training is focused on the urethra, bladder, prostate and kidneys. Therefore whether you have UTI or not, we got you covered.
Misdiagnosis even with an expert telemedicine visit for UTIs can occur. With telemedicine for UTIs, we donât have the luxury of an immediate urine sample result to aid in a diagnosis. But no worries, we can order a urine sample at your local lab before you pick up antibiotics.
Ultimately if you donât have a UTI, the key is to recognize the misdiagnosis and then solve the problem. Nothing is worse than getting three courses of antibiotics when you donât have a UTI. Unfortunately when you skip the expert, this happens A LOT.
If we donât think you have a UTI, or you donât respond to typical treatment, then we can quickly pivot and guide you towards the correct solution.
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Some Of The Most Common Causes Of Candida
For women, it is not only irritating but very painful.
It can also result in a serious condition and if not treated at the right time, could lead to other complications.
And it is known that when Candida albicans are in an excessive amount, they can overgrow into fungus which can cause various illnesses and is also known as candidiasis.
In order to avoid such illnesses, it is very important for women to know more about the causes of this uncomfortable disease.
Knowing why cramps are caused can help women prepare the necessary measures to prevent and cure the condition.
This is very necessary because if women are able to know the basic reason for their condition, they will be able to do something right in order to stop it or at least treat it well before it gets worse.
Here are some of the most common causes of candida.
This is the most common reason for Candidiasis or yeast infection.
The area around the genitals, mouth and diaper area contains a high amount of moisture.
Yeast fungus feeds on the excess moisture in these areas.
The use of contraceptive pills can also cause Candidiasis.
Diaper rash is also another cause of dry skin in women.
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Yeast In Urine Infections
Cause: Usually caused by a fungus called Candida albicans.
Symptoms: Painful urination. Vaginal itchiness, burning or soreness. Vaginal discharge that may be thick and white. Pain during sex. Swelling or redness of the vulva.
Treatment: Usually an over-the-counter product such as an antifungal cream.
Prevention: Wear cotton underwear, or underwear with a cotton panel, and avoid wearing tight-fitting pants or shorts. Change out of sweaty workout clothes or wet swimsuits as soon as you can. Some experts recommend eating yogurt containing live cultures of Lactobacillus acidophilus or probiotics.
Important Fact you Need to Know: Yeast infections can affect parts of the body other than the vagina, including the mouth.
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What Causes A Bladder Infection
The type of bacteria that causes bladder infections is Escherichia coli entering the bladder via the urethra or ureter. The bladder will often flush them out, but when they cling to the wall of the bladder and begin to multiply is when an infection becomes present.
E. Coli lives in the large intestine and is found in stool. When bacteria from stool touch the skin, E. Coli enters the body. The reason women suffer from more bladder infections than men is that their urethra is shorter and closer to the rectum, making the trip for bacteria easy.
Other reasons for bladder infections can include:
- sexual activity
- vaginal infections
What Causes A Uti
Knowing what creates urinary tract trouble can help you strategize to prevent infections.
Some life stages enable more bacteria growth. For example, the onset of sexual activity in young women and directly after menopause . During these phases, simply be aware of the symptoms of a UTI and vigilant to your own body so that if an issue arises, youre quick to address it.
Since a womans urethra is shorter than a mans, bacteria enters the bladder more readily. Complicating matters even more is the location of a womans urinary tractits closer to the anus and vaginal opening, where bacteria tend to live more abundantly. Keep the area clean by washing regularly and wiping correctly after using the restroom .
Dehydration can also encourage the bacteria to thrive, since youre not flushing it out as frequently. Make sure youre drinking plenty of water and never hold your bladder unless instructed by a doctor.
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Treatments For Cystitis From A Gp
If you see a GP and they diagnose you with cystitis, you’ll usually be prescribed a course of antibiotics to treat the infection.
These should start to have an effect within a day or 2.
If you keep getting cystitis, a GP may give you an antibiotic prescription to take to a pharmacy whenever you develop symptoms, without needing to see a doctor first.
Your GP can also prescribe a low dose of antibiotics for you to take continuously over several months.
What Is A Urine Infection And What Causes It
Most urine infections are caused by germs that come from your own bowel. They cause no harm in your bowel but can cause infection if they get into other parts of your body. Some bacteria lie around your back passage after you pass a stool. These bacteria sometimes travel up the tube called the urethra and into your bladder. Some bacteria thrive in urine and multiply quickly to cause infection.
A urine infection is often called a urinary tract infection by healthcare professionals. When the infection is just in the bladder and urethra, this is called a lower UTI. If it travels up to affect one or both kidneys as well then it is called an upper UTI. This can be more serious than lower UTIs, as the kidneys can be damaged by the infection.
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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, you’ll need to go to a doctor right away. The sooner you begin treatment, the less uncomfortable you’ll be. Call your doctor’s office or clinic. If you can’t 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.
What Are Other Possible Causes Of Painful Urination
A painful burning feeling when you urinate is often a sign of a urinary tract infection . However, painful urination can occur even if you dont have an infection. Certain drugs, like some used in cancer chemotherapy, may inflame the bladder. Something pressing against the bladder or a kidney stone stuck near the entrance to the bladder can also cause painful urination.
Painful urination can also be caused by vaginal infection or irritation. You might be sensitive to chemicals in products such as douches, vaginal lubricants, soaps, scented toilet paper, or contraceptive foams or sponges. If it hurts to urinate after youve used these products, youre probably sensitive to them.
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