Are There Any Home Remedies For A Urinary Tract Infection
The best “home remedy” for a UTI is prevention . However, although there are many “home remedies” available from web sites, holistic medicine publications, and from friends and familymembers there is controversy about them in the medical literature as few have been adequately studied. However, a few remedies will be mentioned because there may be some positive effect from these home remedies. The reader should be aware that while reading about these remedies , they should not to overlook the frequent admonition that UTIs can be dangerous. If the person does not experience relief or if his or her symptoms worsen over 1 to 2 days, the person should seek medical care. In fact, many of the articles about UTI remedies actually describe ways to reduce or prevent UTIs. Examples of home treatments that may help to prevent UTIs, that may have some impact on an ongoing infection, and that are unlikely to harm people are as follows:
There are over-the-counter tests available for detecting presumptive evidence for a UTI . These tests are easy to use and can provide a presumptive diagnosis if the test instructions are carefully followed a positive test should encourage the person to seek medical care.
Do I Really Have To See A Doctor For A Uti
It may seem unnecessary to see a doctor for such a common illness. Why not just let it go and treat it on your own? Dr. Elizabeth Rice, a licensed naturopathic doctor and primary care physician at Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine, has tips for natural treatments, but says you always have to be careful. A partially treated or mistreated UTI can quickly become a serious condition known as pyelonephritis , so care must always be taken when treating UTIs naturally.
If youre just starting to feel or see potential UTI symptoms, you can try a few natural remedies to try to flush out the bacteria and reduce inflammation before the infection really takes hold, Rice says. Increase your intake of fluids to help flush the bladder. But if the symptoms persist more than a day, or get worse, you have to go to the doctor.
Going to the doctor may be a bit annoying, but a UTI that morphs into a kidney infection is way worse than an afternoon in the waiting room. Kidney infections can lead to potentially life-threatening sepsis or permanent kidney damage. Seeing a doctor to prescribe antibiotics may ultimately help you avoid a lifetime of medical complications.
You know your body best, so listen to it. You may not run to the doctor after one weird-feeling pee. If you start to have mild symptoms, here are a few natural choices that may help you out.
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.
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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.
How To Prevent A Uti From Striking Again
Sick of dealing with urinary tract infections? Really, the best “natural remedy” is simple: just prevent one from striking in the first place! Here’s how:
Drink cranberry juice
Although it has often been thought of as a treatment option, cranberry juice can only help as a preventative measure. Cranberry juice can be helpful in preventing UTIs by making the urine more acidic and preventing harmful bacteria from sticking to the walls of the bladder, Dr. Sherry explains. An acidic environment in the urine makes bacterial build-up more difficult and reduces your chance of getting a UTI. But even with this information, studies have conflicting evidence about cranberries being a reliable source for prevention. So if youre prone to UTIs, it wont hurt to drink unsweetened cranberry juice. But its definitely not the UTI cure-all it has always been thought to be.
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.
Limit antibiotic use
Avoid feminine hygiene products with scents and chemicals
Wipe front to back
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What Is The Urinary Tract
The urinary tract makes and stores urine, one of the body’s liquid waste products. The urinary tract includes the following parts:
- Kidneys: These small organs are located on back of your body, just above the hips. They are the filters of your body removing waste and water from your blood. This waste becomes urine.
- Ureters: The ureters are thin tubes that carry urine from the kidneys to your bladder.
- Bladder: A sac-like container, the bladder stores your urine before it leaves the body.
- Urethra: This tube carries the urine from your bladder to the outside of the body.
Drink Juices That Are Rich In Potassium For Breakfast
Youre probably wondering how to best obtain potassium from juice. Its very easy with a blender and a few simple ingredients. Take one carrot, a stalk of celery, two bunches of spinach, some parsley, and a little water, and blend!. This juice is tasty and very healthy, and will serve as a powerful cleansing agent that also contains a lot of energy to help you start the day. Youll love it.
Best Ways To Get Rid Of Urinary Tract Infection With Cranberry Juice
Drinking cranberry juice is good for your body. Cranberry juice is a great beverage as it has lots of important antioxidants that help reduce your risk of heart disease. The antioxidants also help in building your immune system so that your body can fight UTI infections.
Discuss With Your Doctor If Some Of Your Uti Symptoms Persist After Antibiotics
Here are several questions that you should think about prior to your doctor visit to help your physician with the right information:
- Are your symptoms stronger when the bladder is full and you feel better after urination?
- Does a certain position trigger bladder pain?
- Do you feel that your symptoms stay the same over the course of days and even weeks?
- Is there blood in your urine, foul smell, or is your urine cloudy?
- If youd like more help on how to discuss your UTI with your provider and how to make the most out of your patient-doctor relationships, check out my Actionable Guide here.
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What Causes A Urinary Tract Infection
Urinary tract infections are caused by microorganisms usually bacteria that enter the urethra and bladder, causing inflammation and infection. Though a UTI most commonly happens in the urethra and bladder, bacteria can also travel up the ureters and infect your kidneys.
More than 90% of bladder infection cases are caused by E. coli, a bacterium normally found in the intestines.
What The Science Says
E. coli bacteria cause 90 percent of UTIs. Once these bacteria enter the urinary tract, they latch on to cells, grow, and cause infection. Researchers think that D-mannose might work to treat or prevent a UTI by stopping these bacteria from latching on.
After you consume foods or supplements containing D-mannose, your body eventually eliminates it through the kidneys and into the urinary tract.
While in the urinary tract, it can attach to the E. coli bacteria that may be there. As a result, the bacteria can no longer attach to cells and cause infection.
There isnt much research on the effects of D-mannose when taken by people who have UTIs, but a few early studies show that it might help.
A 2013 study evaluated D-mannose in 308 women who had frequent UTIs. D-mannose worked about as well as the antibiotic nitrofurantoin for preventing UTIs over a 6-month period.
In a 2014 study, D-mannose was compared to the antibiotic trimethoprim/sulfamethoxazole for treatment and prevention of frequent UTIs in 60 women.
D-mannose reduced UTI symptoms in women with an active infection. It was also more effective than the antibiotic for preventing additional infections.
A 2016 study tested the effects of D-mannose in 43 women with an active UTI. At the end of the study, most women had improved symptoms.
A lot of different D-mannose products are available. When deciding on which one to use, you should consider three things:
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Can Drinking Apple Cider Vinegar Treat Utis
Studies, such as one published in January 2018 in Scientific Reports, have shown that apple cider vinegar has some antibacterial and antifungal properties, but theres no scientific or medical evidence that drinking apple cider vinegar cures UTIs. Drinking large amounts of apple cider vinegar could lead to throat irritation and tooth decay.
When To See A Doctor
If your urinary tract infection does not clear up on its own, your doctor can prescribe antibiotics.
UTIs can be dangerous if the infection spreads to your kidneys. Go see your doctor if you experience fevers, shaking, nausea, or vomiting, as these may be signs of a more serious infection.
If a UTI is left untreated, kidney damage can occur. , a life-threatening medical emergency, is also possible. In pregnant women, leaving a UTI untreated can lead to premature birth. In men, it can lead to narrowing of the urethra.
BMC Family Practice: âWomen with symptoms of uncomplicated urinary tract infection are often willing to delay antibiotic treatment: a prospective cohort study.â
Drugs: âCranberry and urinary tract infections.â
FEMS Immunology and Medical Microbiology: âOral probiotics can resolve urogenital infections.â
Future Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences: âNatural therapeutics for urinary tract infectionsâa review.â
Mayo Clinic: âUrinary tract infection .â
Reviews in Urology: âManagement of Recurrent Urinary Tract Infections in Healthy Adult Women.â
The European Journal of Clinical Nutrition: âMild dehydration: a risk factor of urinary tract infection?â
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A Note About Cranberry Juice And Utis
Cranberry juice or cranberry extract in supplemental form has long been used as a home remedy for UTIs.
The thought is that the proanthocyanidins in cranberries may help prevent bladder infections by keeping the bacteria from clinging to the bladder wall, says Sonya Angelone, MS, RDN, a nutrition consultant based in San Francisco, and spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.
Yet theres scientific controversy over how effective cranberry juice is at preventing UTIs due to conflicting conclusions in studies on the topic, according to an article published in May 2016 in Advances in Nutrition. Some studies have found it might work, while others have found no effect.
Bottom line, there is some evidence it may help, and it doesnt hurt to try it, says Angelone. Just be sure to chose unsweetened cranberry juice . Mix this with sparkling water or plain yogurt, she recommends.
Another low-calorie option choose a cranberry pill that contains d-mannose, she says.
Practice These Healthy Habits
Preventing urinary tract infections starts with practicing a few good bathroom and hygiene habits.
First, its important not to hold urine for too long. This can lead to a buildup of bacteria, resulting in infection .
Peeing after sexual intercourse can also reduce the risk 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 you use the toilet, make sure you wipe front to back. Wiping from back to front can cause bacteria to spread to the urinary tract and is associated with an increased risk of UTIs .
Urinating frequently and after sexual intercourse can reduce the risk of UTI. Spermicide use and wiping from back to front may increase the risk of UTI.
Several natural supplements may decrease the risk of developing a UTI.
Here are a few supplements that have been studied:
- D-Mannose. D-Mannose is a type of sugar that is found in cranberries. Research suggests its effective in treating UTIs and preventing recurrence (
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Are Bananas Good For Utis
The American Urological Association calls bananas a bladder-friendly food. Thats because bananas arent likely to irritate the bladder in most people. Other bladder-friendly fruits and veggies include: pears, green beans, winter squash, and potatoes. While eating bananas may help to lessen bladder irritation, eating bananas alone wont make a UTI go away.
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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Change Menstrual Pads Tampons Or Cups Frequently
Low-absorbency pads made of synthetic materials can expose your vulva to bacteria and increase your risk of infection. Using tampons can encourage bacteria to develop faster, so its important to change your tampon regularly. Tampons and menstrual cups may increase your risk of getting or worsening a UTI if its not positioned correctly. If it pushes on your urethra and traps your urine, bacteria can spread to the bladder. Changing the size or shape of a menstrual cup may help prevent recurrent UTIs.
Allergies Intolerances Sensitivity And Interactions
Lactose intolerance: A person with a lactose intolerance lacks the enzyme needed to break down and digest the sugar found in milk. Consuming milk and dairy products may result in bloating, flatulence, or diarrhea.
Tolerance levels depend on the individual. One person may be able to tolerate aged dairy with low levels of lactose, such as yogurt and hard cheeses, while others experience a reaction to even a small amount of dairy produce.
Soft, fresh cheeses, such as mozzarella, may trigger a reaction in a person with a lactose intolerance. However, harder cheeses, such as cheddar and parmesan, have lower levels of lactose. People with a lactose intolerance may find that a small amount of these cheeses can be safely consumed.
An allergy occurs because of an abnormal immunologic reaction to certain triggers, such as milk protein, whether casein or whey. The bodys immune system produces an allergic antibody, immunoglobulin E antibody, when exposed to the trigger.
Allergy symptoms include post-nasal drip, wheezing, diarrhea, and vomiting. In more severe cases, a person may develop asthma, eczema, bleeding, pneumonia, and anaphylaxis, or shock. This can be serious, and even life-threatening.
Anyone with a milk allergy must avoid all dairy products, including cheese.
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Drink Plenty Of Water
Although urinating can be painful when you have a UTI, its important to drink as many fluids as possible, particularly water. Most adults should aim to drink between six and eight 8-ounce glasses of water per day.
The more you drink, the more youll urinate. Urinating helps flush harmful bacteria from the urinary tract.