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 (
What Causes Urinary Tract Infections
Normal urine is sterile and contains fluids, salts, and waste products. It does not contain bacteria, viruses, or fungi. A UTI occurs when germs, most often bacteria from the digestive tract, get into the opening of the urethra and start to multiply.
Most UTIs are caused by E. coli bacteria, which normally live in the colon.
How Can I Prevent A Stec Infection
- Know your chances of getting food poisoning. People with higher chances for foodborne illness are pregnant women, newborns, children, older adults, and those with weak immune systems, such as people with cancer, diabetes, or HIV/AIDS.
- Practice proper hygiene, especially good handwashing.
- Wash your hands thoroughly after using the bathroom and changing diapers.
- Wash your hands thoroughly before and after preparing or eating food.
- Wash your hands thoroughly after contact with animals or their environments .
- Wash your hands thoroughly before preparing and feeding bottles or foods to an infant or toddler, before touching an infant or toddlers mouth, and before touching pacifiers or other things that go into an infant or toddlers mouth.
- Keep all objects that enter infants and toddlers mouths clean.
- If soap and water arent available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol . These alcohol-based products can quickly reduce the number of germs on hands in some situations, but they are not a substitute for washing with soap and running water.
Wash fruits and vegetables well under running water, unless the package says the contents have already been washed.
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Key Points About Urinary Tract Infections
- Urinary tract infections are a common health problem that affects millions of people each year. These infections can affect any part of the urinary tract.
- Most UTIs are caused by E. coli bacteria, which normally live in the colon.
- The most common symptoms of UTIs include changes in urination such as frequency, pain, or burning urine looks dark, cloudy, or red and smells bad back or side pain nausea/vomiting and fever.
- Antibiotics are used to treat UTIs. Other treatments may include pain relievers, and drinking plenty of water to help wash bacteria out of the urinary tract.
- Other things that can be done may help reduce the likelihood of developing UTIs.
Prevention Of E Coli Infections
Prevention of E. coli O157:H7 infection involves
Avoiding unpasteurized milk and other dairy products made from unpasteurized milk
Thoroughly cooking beef
Thoroughly washing the hands with soap after using the toilet, changing diapers, and having contact with animals or their environment and before and after preparing or eating food
Not swallowing water when swimming or when playing in lakes, ponds, streams, or swimming pools
In the United States, improved meat processing procedures have helped reduce the rate of meat contamination.
To prevent spread of infection in day care centers, staff members may group together children who are known to be infected. Or they may ask for proof that the infection is gone before they allow infected children to attend.
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Natural Remedies For Urinary Tract Infection
Many people who are prone to UTIs experience them frequently. They take antibiotics or other antibacterial treatments, but the infection comes right back. Sometimes its a new type of bacteria, but other times its the same one. They just didnt get killed off by the drug like they were supposed to.
Luckily, there are a variety of natural home remedies for urinary tract infections that are effective. By using these natural remedies for UTIs, you can stop your infections from ever coming back:
1. Cranberry juice: One of the most effective natural treatments for UTIs is cranberry juice. Cranberry juice contains acidic substances that make it harder for bacteria to get a hold in your urethra and cause an infection. Cranberries are a scientifically proven treatment. Studies have shown that it is of particular benefit for women who get recurrent UTI infections. For other groups of people, the benefits are less clear.
3. Vitamin C: When your urine is more acidic, bacteria has a more difficult time growing. Any home remedy that can make your urine more acidic will also make it harder for infections to occur. Vitamin C stops the growth of bacterial infections by acidifying your urine. You can take Vitamin C as a supplement, or you can eat foods loaded with the vitamin, such as oranges, bell peppers, and certain types of juice. Drinking orange juice will not only help stop the growth of bacteria, but it will also help flush out your urinary tract in the same way that water does.
How Does E Coli Enter The Urinary Tract
E. coli naturally resides in the intestines of all humans, usually doing no harm. But some E. coli are pathogenic, meaning they can cause illness. With UTIs, the E. coli bacteria from the intestines is present in fecal matter. And trace amounts of said fecal matter make their way into the urinary tract through the urethra opening and begin to multiply, according to an article published in June 2012 in the journal Expert Review of Vaccines.
One of the reasons that women are more prone to urinary tract infections is that they have very short urethras. The E. coli bacteria from the rectum does not have a long distance to travel to reach the urethra and then bladder to cause an infection.
Some common ways in which this migration or infection can happen include:
- Sexual Contact A womans urethra is located next to the vagina and anus. This design makes it very easy for bacteria to move into the urinary tract during sexual intercourse and sexual contact.
- Improper Wiping For women, wiping from back to front after a bowel movement can drag E. coli directly into the urethra. Because of this, its always recommended to wipe from front to back.
- Holding Urine Frequent bathroom use allows the body to continue to flush bacteria such as E. coli from the system. This is especially important before and after intercourse. To encourage frequent urination, drink plenty of water throughout the day.
In addition, there are other factors that elevate your risk of developing a UTI. These include:
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Escherichia Coli In Vaginal And Urinary Tract Infections
Escherichia coli is a gram-negative facultative anaerobe that can cause of urinary tract and vulvovaginal infections,such as aerobic vaginitis. E. coli is a common cause of infections in the digestive tract resulting in diarrhoea, and gallbladder and blood infections, as E. coli lives naturally in the digestive tract.
E. coli is easily passed from the anus to the vagina and urinary tract, and may cause food poisoning. E. coli is adapted to live in the urinary tract, where the force of urine makes it cling on harder to your cells. This means you cant wash E. coli away by drinking a lot of water.
E. coli can also swim. E. coli in the vagina is less common than in the urethra, but vaginal infections can also occur, contributing to vaginal odour, inflammation and discharge. Usually a test will reveal E. coli in the vagina or urinary tract.
E. coli creates biofilms, which is the sticky matrix that protects E. coli and friends, and blocks other, friendly microbes from colonising. This is particularly problematic in the urinary tract and vagina, where a seemingly successful treatment leaves you susceptible to infections in future.
People who get UTIs really get them. You can get one or two, but typically you either do or you dont, and this is largely down to whether unhealthy biofilms make it easy for you to develop a UTI again. No unhealthy biofilms means each new infection is truly new.
Cut Back On Meat And Poultry
Some studies, such as one published in August 2018 in the journal mBio, have linked contaminated poultry and meat to E.coli bacteria strains that can cause UTIs. These studies havent proven that eating meat or poultry causes UTIs. In fact, some E.coli can live in the intestines without causing any problems. However, bacteria from the gut can enter the urinary tract and cause infection. This risk is greater in women than men, because women have shorter urethras than men, meaning the bacteria has less distance to travel to reach the bladder.
Cutting back on meat and focusing on fruits and veggies may slightly cut your risk of UTIs. According to a study of Buddhists in Taiwan, published in January 2020 in Scientific Reports, compared with nonvegetarians, vegetarians had a 16 percent lower risk of UTI.
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Uncomplicated Urinary Tract Infections
Uncomplicated UTIs are due to a bacterial infection, most often caused by E coli. UTIs affect women much more often than men.
Cystitis, or bladder infection, is the most common UTI. It occurs in the lower urinary tract and is much more common in women. In most cases, the infection is brief and acute and only the inner surface of the bladder is infected. Deeper layers of the bladder may be harmed if the infection becomes persistent, or chronic, or if the urinary tract is structurally abnormal.
Sometimes, the infection spreads to the upper urinary tract . This is called pyelonephritis, or more commonly, a kidney infection.
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.
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What Causes Urinary Tract Infection
The vast majority of urinary tract infections are caused by the bacteria Escherichia coli , which is usually found in the digestive system. However, other pathogens may cause a UTI. These include:
- Klebsiella pneumonia
- Enterococcus faecalis
- Staphylococcus saprophyticus
The bacteria may infect any part of the urinary tract bladder, urethra or kidneys. Depending on where the infection occurs, the UTIs are often known as:
- Cystitis infection of the bladder
- Urethritis infection of the urethra
- Pyelonephritis infection of the kidneys
The infection in urethra and bladder is usually not very serious and clears up with treatment. Similarly, ureters very rarely get infected. However, if a UTI reaches the kidneys, it may lead to kidney infections and a person may have to go to the hospital for treatment.
Symptoms Of Utis In Older People
The classic lower UTI symptoms of pain, frequency, or urgency and upper tract symptoms of flank pain, chills, and tenderness may be absent or altered in older people with UTIs.
Symptoms of UTIs that may occur in seniors but not in younger adults include mental changes or confusion, nausea or vomiting, abdominal pain, or cough and shortness of breath. A preexisting health condition may further confuse the picture and make diagnosis difficult.
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Treatment For Recurrent Infections
Women who have 2 or more symptomatic UTIs within a 6-month period, or 3 or more episodes over the course of a year, may need preventive antibiotics. All women should use lifestyle measures to prevent recurrences.
Intermittent Self Treatment
Many, if not most, women with recurrent UTIs can effectively self-treat recurrent UTIs without going to a doctor. In general, this requires the following steps:
- As soon as the person develops symptoms, she takes the antibiotic. Infections that occur less than twice a year are usually treated as if they were an initial attack, with single-dose or 3-day antibiotic regimens.
- In some cases, she also performs a clean-catch urine test before starting antibiotics and sends it to the doctor for culturing to confirm the infection.
A woman should consult a doctor under the following circumstances:
- If symptoms have not gone away within 48 hours of starting the antibiotic treatment
- If there is a change in symptoms
- If the person suspects that she is pregnant
- If the person has more than 4 infections a year
Women who are not good candidates for self-treatment are those with impaired immune systems, previous kidney infections, structural abnormalities of the urinary tract, or a history of infection with antibiotic-resistant bacteria.
Continuous Preventive Antibiotics
Quality Assessment And Risk Of Bias In Individual Studies
The Newcastle-Ottawa Scale adapted for cross-sectional studies was used for assessing the risk of bias of included studies . This scale was adapted from the NOS quality assessment scale for cohort studies. The assessment was in the area of selection , comparability and outcome . This was done by GKB and JM. Studies were classified into 4 categories: very good , good , satisfactory and unsatisfactory . The complete assessment of studies is found in the supplemental file .
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Preventive Measures For A Uti
- Drink lots of water.
- Urinate immediately every time after you have sexual intercourse with your partner.
- Dont hold back urine as it may also cause the bacteria to stick.
- Wear cotton panties.
- Have a balanced and nutritious diet.
- Avoid bathing in a bathtub as it may provide a site for the bacteria to grow.
- Avoid douching and scented pads.
- After using the toilet, always wipe in the direction of front to back as this may avoid any germs from getting into the urethral opening.
- Wash your hands properly every time after you use the toilet.
- Avoid alcohol or caffeinated drinks when you are suffering from the UTI.
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The Role Of Protein Expression In Quinolone
The introduction of double-stranded DNA breaks following topoisomerase inhibition by quinolones induces the DNA stress response , in which RecA is activated by DNA damage and promotes auto-cleavage of the LexA repressor protein, inducing expression of SOS-response genes including DNA repair enzymes. Notably, several studies have shown that preventing induction of the SOS response serves to enhance killing by quinolone antibiotics , . Preventing induction of the SOS response has also been shown to reduce the formation of drug-resistant mutants by blocking the induction of error-prone DNA polymerases, homologous recombination, and horizontal transfer of drug-resistance elements, .
Together with studies revealing that co-treatment with quinolones and the protein synthesis inhibitor, chloramphenicol, inhibits the ability of certain quinolones to kill bacteria, , there seems to be a clear relationship between the primary effects of quinolone-topoisomerase-DNA complex formation and the response of the bacteria to these effects in the bactericidal activity of quinolone antibiotics. For example, ROS-mediated cell death has recently been shown to occur through the protein synthesis dependent pathway. Also, the chromsomally-encoded toxin, MazF, has been shown to be required under certain conditions for efficient killing by quinolone drugs owing to its ability to alter protein carbonylation, a form of oxidative stress.
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How Can You Get A Uti
Gender is the greatest risk factor for getting a UTI. The same study mentioned above showed that women are eight times more likely to contract a UTI than men. One theory is that because women have a shorter urethra, bacteria have an easier time reaching the bladder.
Other risk factors that can lead to a urinary tract infection include:
Just because you have risk factors doesnt mean youre destined to suffer from UTIs though. There are many things you can do to prevent, and even stop, a UTI.
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