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How To Improve Urinary Tract Health

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How To Do Kegels To Prevent Incontinence

7 Tips for a Healthy Bladder

To get started: Find the right muscles. To identify your pelvic floor muscles, stop urination in midstream. Perfect your technique. To do Kegels, imagine you are sitting on a marble and tighten your pelvic muscles as if youre lifting the marble. Maintain your focus. For best results, focus on tightening only your pelvic floor muscles. Repeat three times a day.

Donât Miss: Is Itching A Sign Of Urinary Tract Infection

Doreen: E: Chung: Md:

She also has an interest in robotic and vaginal surgery for urinary incontinence and pelvic organ prolapse, robotic urologic reconstructive surgery, neurogenic bladder, sacral neuromodulation, artificial urinary sphincters for post-prostatectomy male incontinence, and laser procedures for the treatment of BPH. Chung is actively involved in clinical research with a focus on clinical outcomes, the use of social media in urology, and the effect of diabetes on voiding and incontinence.

What You Can Do: Drink Plenty Of Liquids

It helps clear out harmful things like bacteria and may help prevent bladder cancer by flushing out certain chemicals. And if you don’t drink enough, your urine will have less water in it, and that can irritate your bladder. But not all liquids are the same — caffeine and alcohol can irritate your bladder. Water is always your best bet. Talk to your doctor about how much you should drink each day.

Read Also: What Is The Best Prescription For Urinary Tract Infection

Risk Factors For Recurrent Utis Include:

  • Frequent sexual intercourse, which increases the likelihood of bacteria entering the urethra and bladder.
  • Using spermicide with or without a diaphragm, as this can harm protective bacteria in the urinary tract that defend against infection.
  • Vaginal atrophy, which is a postmenopausal condition caused by decreased estrogen levels.
  • Genetics, especially the inherited genes that regulate the body’s immune response to infections.

It’s common for some people to have bacteria in their urine but not experience any symptoms. In these cases, no treatment is necessary.

Talk with your health care team if you think you have a UTI. You may need an appointment to discuss your symptoms and collect a urine sample.

You should seek medical attention if you develop a fever, chills, disorientation, or back or side pain. These could be signs of a kidney infection, which requires treatment, or a systemic infection of the bloodstream that requires hospitalization.

Sarah Suarez is a physician assistant in OB-GYN in La Crosse and Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin.

For the safety of our patients, staff and visitors, Mayo Clinic has strict masking policies in place. Anyone shown without a mask was either recorded prior to COVID-19 or recorded in a non-patient care area where social distancing and other safety protocols were followed.

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Assess For Presence Of Complicating Factors

AmNature Kidney Support with Bladder Health &  Urinary Tract System ...

Once it has been determined that the patient has symptoms consistent with UTI, evaluation for complicating factors is essential. UTIs are considered complicated when they are associated with structural, functional or metabolic conditions that promote UTI. These patients have an increased likelihood of resistant pathogens and may be more likely to experience treatment failure.2,11 Examples of complicating factors include UTIs in males, chronic obstruction, nephrolithiasis, poorly controlled diabetes, indwelling urinary catheter, chronic renal insufficiency, pregnancy and immunosuppression .

Recommended Reading: Urinary Tract Infection In Pregnancy

Pee Immediately After Sex

This is advice most urologists and gynecologists give their patients, especially those prone to UTIs. Sex can introduce all sorts of bacteria to the urethra and urinating immediately after helps clean the area, explains Ramin. If you have access to a shower, even better. Ramin recommends washing your genital area with mild soap and warm water after sex when possible.

What Is The Urinary Tract

The urinary tract is the bodys drainage system for removing urine, which is made up of wastes and extra fluid. For normal urination to occur, all body parts in the urinary tract need to work together, and in the correct order.

The urinary tract includes two kidneys, two ureters, a bladder, and a urethra.

Kidneys. Two bean-shaped organs, each about the size of a fist. They are located just below your rib cage, one on each side of your spine. Every day, your kidneys filter about 120 to 150 quarts of blood to remove wastes and balance fluids. This process produces about 1 to 2 quarts of urine per day.

Ureters. Thin tubes of muscle that connect your kidneys to your bladder and carry urine to the bladder.

Bladder. A hollow, muscular, balloon-shaped organ that expands as it fills with urine. The bladder sits in your pelvis between your hip bones. A normal bladder acts like a reservoir. It can hold 1.5 to 2 cups of urine. Although you do not control how your kidneys function, you can control when to empty your bladder. Bladder emptying is known as urination.

Urethra. A tube located at the bottom of the bladder that allows urine to exit the body during urination.

The urinary tract includes two sets of muscles that work together as a sphincter, closing off the urethra to keep urine in the bladder between your trips to the bathroom.

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Avoid Holding Your Pee

Avoid holding in your urine, as this can encourage bacterial growth. Try not to wait more than 3 to 4 hours to pee, and completely empty your bladder each time.

This is even more important if youre pregnant as pregnancy puts you at an increased risk for a UTI. Holding your pee can further increase the risk.

How Bothersome Is It

Do increased thirst and urination mean lower urinary tract infection? – Dr. Ravish I R

Doctors use the International Prostate Symptom Score to measure how frequent a man’s symptoms are. It’s a seven-item questionnaire about typical BPH symptoms that provides a score from 0 to 35. You can see the questionnaire at health.harvard.edu/IPSS.

Typically, men who score 8 and above are more likely to think their condition needs treatment, but it varies from man to man. Above a score of 8 there is actually a spectrum of bother. Two men can have the same symptom score, and one can tolerate it just fine but the other can’t.

The IPSS test cuts through the subjectivity with this additional question: “If you were to spend the rest of your life with your urinary condition just the way it is now, how would you feel about that?” If the answer is, “I could live with it,” then holding off on drug therapy or surgery might be best for you.

But not taking medication or having surgery doesn’t mean “do nothing.” It should include strategies to lessen symptoms or make them easier to cope with.

Also Check: How To Help Urinary Incontinence

Take Charge Of Your Bladder Health With Cxbladder

Talk with your doctor about bladder health and how to keep the urinary system clean. If you’re experiencing any bladder cancer symptoms like blood in your urine, seek medical advice right away. Talk with your doctor about using Cxbladder when you begin discussing the diagnosis and monitoring process. Before flushing, look at the color of your urine as an indicator of concerns, including bladder cancer. If there’s blood in your urine or you “see red,” consult with your doctor. If symptoms persist, insist on further evaluation to determine if there could be bladder cancer present.Learn more about Cxbladder Ask our team a question

Considerations For Laboratory Assessment

If the patient does not have symptoms indicative of UTI, sending a urine culture is not recommended. If a culture is performed on an asymptomatic patient and results in the presence of bacteria that is not attributable to contamination, this is consistent with ASB. Screening for and treatment of ASB is not recommended, unless the patient is pregnant or going to be undergoing an invasive genitourinary procedure, as outlined above.3,12 However, some clinicians have difficulty ignoring a positive urine culture, even when the patient is asymptomatic. One study of hospitalized patients showed that by not routinely reporting urine culture results in noncatheterized patients, the rates of inappropriate treatment of ASB were reduced from 48% to 12%.20 Therefore, one should avoid sending a urine culture in the absence of symptoms to limit the pressure to treat .

Pharmacists who are unable to order urine cultures should advocate for or make recommendations to have them done when they are appropriate and should discourage the sending of urine cultures when they are not indicated.

Blood cultures should be considered if the patient is febrile, hemodynamically unstable, if pyelonephritis is suspected or if the patient is immunocompromised.21,23

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Tips & Habits For Maintaining Your Urinary Tract Health

Although UTIs are usually easy to treat, its generally better to prevent them from developing in the first place by taking few precautions than to treat them after they develop.

This is because some antibiotics used to treat UTIs can cause side effects. There are also risks associated with using antibiotics too often, including the risk of developing an antibiotic-resistant infection thats more difficult to treat in the future.

Luckily, reducing your risk of developing a urinary tract infection or other urinary health issues is usually a relatively simple process.

Below, weve provided 15 tips, habits and lifestyle changes that you can use to maintain optimal urinary tract health and reduce your risk of developing a UTI:

  • Keep yourself hydrated, especially with water. Consuming plenty of water and other fluids is an important part of flushing urine out of your body and preventing bacteria from multiplying in your urinary tract.Make sure to keep yourself well hydrated throughout the day, especially with sugar-free drinks such as water. Most people need several glasses of water per day, although you may need more if you have an active lifestyle or live in a hot, humid area. If you have a chronic health problem affecting your kidney, heart or liver, be sure to follow your healthcare providers recommendation on how much liquid you should be taking in a day as some of these conditions require fluid restricted diets.

Practice Healthy Hygiene Habits

5 Phases to Support Urinary Health Naturally

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.

Read Also: How To Test For A Urinary Tract Infection At Home

When To Contact A Doctor

If a person suspects that they have a UTI, they should ask a healthcare professional for advice about the best way to treat it.

Antibiotics may not always be necessary, but it is still important to seek medical attention. This reduces the risk of developing a more severe infection that is harder to treat.

Below are answers to some frequently asked questions about treating UTIs.

Go Easy On The Alcohol

Among beverages to avoid, alcohol falls near the top of the list. Similar to drinks high in caffeine, alcohol also acts as a diuretic and will increase your urine production. While drinking alcohol, you may also be less aware of your urge to use the restroom, causing an increased risk of leakage or accidents.

Try This: Drink non-alcoholic beverages that still help you relax. We recommend mushroom hot chocolate to help you calm down before bed or a CBD drink for social occasions .

Recommended Reading: Bulking Agents For Urinary Incontinence

Tips For Keeping Your Bladder Healthy

  • Avoid bladder irritantsâ Certain foods and drinks have been associated with worsening symptoms of urinary frequency, urgency or bladder pain. Avoid spicy foods, caffeinated and carbonated beverages, chocolate, tea, vinegar, orange juice, tomato-based foods, or alcoholic beverages.
  • Drink waterâ Water is essential for bladder health. Drinking a lot of water allows your body to better break down harmful toxins and potential carcinogens and flush them out of your system. Frequent water consumption also leads to frequent urination, giving potentially harmful cells less time in the body.
  • Add lemon or limeâ Citric acid can help prevent kidney stones and urinary tract infections. Lemons can flush the bacterial toxins from the body and thus help in removing the infectious bacteria from the bladder. Lime juice also causes the pH of the blood and urinary tract to change from acidic to alkaline thereby hindering the growth of these opportunistic bacteria.
  • Go when you need toâ In some cases, the holding of your urine for too long can cause bacteria to multiply. This can lead to a urinary tract infection.
  • Lead a healthy lifestyleâ Taking care of your overall health is key to having healthy kidneys, liver, and bladder. Obesity, diabetes, heart failure and stroke can affect your bladders ability to function properly. Once your medical problems are managed, bladder health improves.
  • Why Are Females At A Higher Risk For Utis

    What Is a Urinary Tract Infection (UTI)? AMITA Health

    People with female reproductive organs are at a higher risk for UTIs because of their anatomy. The female urethra, the tube which empties urine from your bladder out of your body, is shorter than someone born with male anatomy.

    The female urethra is also quite close to female reproductive organs. That means bacteria from sexual intercourse as well as products like spermicide can be in close contact with the urethra and bladder.

    Females also experience menopause and pregnancy. These two biological events change the bacteria in your reproductive and digestive tracts and create conditions that make UTIs more likely.

    Read Also: Bladder Infection Versus Urinary Tract Infection

    How Can You Keep Your Urinary Tract Healthy

    You can help keep your urinary tract healthy by following some basic tips.

    Drink enough liquids, especially water. If youre healthy, try to drink six to eight 8-ounce glasses of liquid each day. You may need to drink more if you have kidney stones or bladder stones. At least half of your liquid intake should be water. You might need to drink less water if you have certain conditions, such as kidney failure or heart disease. Ask your health care professional how much liquid is healthy for you.

    Keep your bowels regular. Regular bowel movements are important to your bladder health. You can promote both bowel health and bladder health by

    • making healthy food choices. You can keep your urinary tract healthy by sticking to an eating plan that includes lean proteins, whole grains, fiber-rich breads, nuts, colorful berries, fruits, and vegetables to promote regular bowel movements.
    • living a healthy lifestyle. Get regular physical activity, limit your alcohol intake, cut down on caffeinated food and drinks, and dont smoke.

    Go whenever you need to. Often, people will hold their urine because its not a good time to go to the bathroom. However, holding in your urine for too long can weaken your bladder muscles and make it harder for your bladder to empty completely. Urine left in your bladder can allow bacteria to grow and makes you more likely to develop a urinary tract infection .

    Know The Difference Between Uti And Asb

    UTI is defined as a bacterial infection of the urinary tract and can involve both the lower and upper urinary tract. Cystitis typically presents with symptoms such as dysuria with or without frequency, urgency, suprapubic pain or hematuria. Symptoms suggestive of pyelonephritis include fever, chills, flank pain or tenderness, with or without the typical symptoms of cystitis above.2 Characteristics of the urine itself, such as being malodorous or smelly, or being cloudy, milky or turbid, are not valid indicators of UTI by themselves.4,10,11

    ASB is the presence of bacteria in the urine without symptoms attributable to the urinary tract. Only pregnant patients and patients who will be undergoing a genitourinary procedure with mucosal breach, such as a transurethral resection of the prostate, require treatment of ASB. In other populations, ASB may be very common but treating ASB in these populations has not been shown to improve morbidity or mortality, and some studies indicate that treatment produces more harmful effects than good.3,10,12 Exposing patients to unnecessary antimicrobial therapy may select for and lead to subsequent infection with antimicrobial-resistant organisms , cause secondary infections and is associated with increased risk of adverse effects and increased costs to the patient and health care system.3,11,12

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    Other Advice To Help Promote Bladder Health

    Try to avoid constipation. Having a full bowel puts pressure on the bladder and can therefore cause problems with emptying, may make leakage more likely or worse and is associated with an increase in urinary tract infections . Eating plenty of whole grains, fruit and vegetables, drinking sufficient water to keep the urine a pale colour, undertaking some physical activity every day and going to empty your bowels as soon as you feel the need will all help to prevent constipation.

    Pass urine whenever you need to. If you are drinking well then you are likely to want to empty your bladder every two to three hours. Holding on too long when you need the toilet can make it more difficult for your bladder to empty fully and can increase the likelihood of developing a urinary tract infection. Also try to avoid going just in case. If you go too often when you do not need to pass urine, then the bladder can eventually become smaller and therefore hold less, increasing the need to go to the toilet more often.

    Make sure you take long enough and are relaxed when you are at the toilet. This helps the bladder to empty fully. Women should always sit down properly to pass urine. Hovering over the toilet encourages tightening of the pelvic floor and can prevent complete emptying. Emptying the bladder completely helps to protect against urinary tract infections.

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