Tuesday, October 4, 2022

How To Stop Getting Urinary Tract Infections

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What Are The Symptoms Of A Uti

How to Prevent a Urinary Tract Infection

Not surprisingly, some of the symptoms of a UTI involve the frequency and quality of pee. Women suffering from a UTI, whether they get the infection from sex or other ways, can have a strong urge to urinate, have cloudy or red or pink urine, and may experience pain or burning during urination.

You might also get fever, shaking, or chills, and even pain in your upper back, your side, or the pelvic region.

Does Cranberry Juice Prevent A Urinary Tract Infection

Many people say that cranberry juice can help treat, or even prevent, a UTI. Researchers are currently looking into the topic, but havent found a definitive answer yet. Healthcare providers recommend drinking lots of fluids if you have, or have a history of getting, a UTI. Adding a glass of unsweetened cranberry juice to your diet isnt a proven way to prevent a UTI, but it typically wont hurt you either.

Do Cranberries Prevent Utis

Research on whether or not cranberries can prevent UTIs is inconsistent. Some studies show a benefit while others show very little or no benefit. Some researchers think that cranberries work because they have a component called proanthocyanidin that makes it hard for E. coli to move around and attach to the urinary tract.

There are no clinical recommendations for an exact dose or product to use. Small clinical studies suggest that 150 mL to 750 mL of cranberry juice every day might be helpful. Other small studies have shown that dried cranberries and cranberry tablets might work. The FDA also does not regulate cranberry products like they do medications.

Cranberries are generally considered to be safe. However, too much can cause stomach irritation and weight gain . Cranberries can also affect how medications behave, so be sure to consult your provider if you are considering taking them at the same time. Also keep in mind, cranberries are not as effective as antibiotics a 2011 clinical trial showed TMP/SMX led to fewer UTIs per year than cranberry capsules .

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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

Can You Have Sex If You Have A Uti

Preventing a Urinary Tract Infection (UTI)

In general, it is recommended that you avoid having intercourse when you have an active urinary tract infection. When you get an antibiotic prescription, ask your doctor when the right time to resume sexual activity would be. Of course, you can still kiss and have other intimate and emotional connections.

Once you have completed a course of antibiotics and the UTI has cleared away, you should be able to resume sexual activity. But be sure to take the careful steps necessary to prevent the sex from putting you on the road to yet another one.

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Can I Become Immune To The Antibiotics Used To Treat A Uti

Your body can actually get used to the antibiotics typically used to treat a urinary tract infection . This happens in people who have very frequent infections. With each UTI and use of antibiotics to treat it, the infection adapts and becomes harder to fight. This is called an antibiotic-resistant infection. Because of this, your healthcare provider may suggest alternative treatments if you have frequent UTIs. These could include:

  • Waiting: Your provider may suggest that you watch your symptoms and wait. During this time, you may be encouraged to drink plenty of fluids in an effort to flush out your system.
  • Intravenous treatment: In some very complicated cases, where the UTI is resistant to antibiotics or the infection has moved to your kidneys, you may need to be treated in the hospital. The medicine will be given to you directly in your vein . Once youre home, you will be prescribed antibiotics for a period of time to fully get rid of the infection.

How Are Urinary Tract Infections Treated

You will need to treat a urinary tract infection. Antibiotics are medicines that kill bacteria and fight an infection. Antibiotics are typically used to treat urinary tract infections. Your healthcare provider will pick a drug that best treats the particular bacteria thats causing your infection. Some commonly used antibiotics can include:

  • Nitrofurantoin.
  • Doxycycline.
  • Quinolones .

Its very important that you follow your healthcare providers directions for taking the medicine. Dont stop taking the antibiotic because your symptoms go away and you start feeling better. If the infection is not treated completely with the full course of antibiotics, it can return.

If you have a history of frequent urinary tract infections, you may be given a prescription for antibiotics that you would take at the first onset of symptoms. Other patients may be given antibiotics to take every day, every other day, or after sexual intercourse to prevent the infection. Talk to your healthcare provider about the best treatment option for you if you have a history of frequent UTIs.

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The Link Between Utis And Sex: Causes And How To Prevent Them

One common way women get urinary tract infections is by having sex. But that doesn’t mean you have to banish sex from your life to prevent painful infections.

Mosuno/Stocksy

Pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections arent the only consequences of having sex. For some women, a urinary tract infection can also be a result.

Blame it on anatomy, which makes a UTI more likely for women than for men, says Sujata Yavagal, MD, a urogynecologist at Baptist Health South Florida in Miami.

Still, it isnt inevitable that having sex will cause a UTI. Taking proper precautions can minimize your odds.

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What Causes Urinary Tract Infection

Prevent Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs) Naturally

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.

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Ways To Prevent Urinary Tract Infections

The best way to deal with UTIs is to prevent infections altogether. Especially if you are someone who gets frequent urinary tract infections, youll want to stay clean and avoid irritation of the urethra. To minimize your risk and say goodbye to the unpleasant symptoms of UTIs, keep bacteria away with these prevention tips:

Stay hydrated. Drink plenty of fluids throughout the day. This will give you the urge to urinate more often, flushing bacteria out of your urinary tract. Avoid liquids that dehydrate the body, such as tea, coffee, and other caffeinated beverages. Water is the best choice when it comes to hydration. Aim to drink at least eight glasses of water per day.

Avoid holding your pee. Make sure you urinate when you feel the urge to go. Holding your urine can encourage bacterial growth. Dont wait more than 4 hours to go to the bathroom. This is particularly important for pregnant women.

Wipe from front to back. The most common cause of UTIs is a bacteria called E. coli, commonly found in the rectum. Always wipe your genitals from front to back after using the bathroom. This decreases the risk of bringing bacteria from the anus to the urethra.

Take a probiotic. Over-the-counter probiotics are live microorganisms that increase good gut bacteria. They have also been known to promote the growth of good bacteria in the urinary tract, protecting you from getting a UTI. Probiotic supplements can be found at most drug or grocery stores.

When To See A Doctor

If you experience any symptoms that make you think you may have a urinary tract infection, see your doctor. It could be a UTI, or it could be something else, such a sexually transmitted disease, so its important to receive an accurate diagnosis. That way, you can treat the issue with the appropriate medication and other remedies.

The faster you can be treated, the faster you can relieve your symptoms. Plus, quick treatment will help prevent any medical complications that could happen if the infection spreads.

An untreated bladder infection can lead to a more serious kidney infection. And an untreated kidney infection can lead to chronic kidney damage or infection outside of the urinary tract.

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Use Safe Birth Control Solutions

If you often get UTIs and are on birth control, you may need to revisit the products youre using, according to WebMD. Some of them contain chemicals that may cause a UTI when in contact with the vaginal environment. Be sure to discuss with your doctor safer options than diaphragms or spermicide-lubricated condoms. Oil-based lubricants can be a problem too. To address vaginal dryness, consider changing to a water-based alternative.

Other Ways To Minimize Your Chances Of Getting A Uti

tips to prevent urinary tract infections

Yavagal also recommends these steps to her patients who are prone to the condition.

  • Dont use douches, sprays, or powders in the genital area. There are protective bacteria in the vagina that we dont want to wash away, she says.
  • Clean your anus well after having a bowel movement. Use a separate sheet of toilet paper to clean the front and the back.
  • Consider drugstore supplements. Yavagal especially likes concentrated cranberry pills, which are thought to create an acidic environment that minimizes the colonization of the wrong bacteria probiotics and d-mannose, which tiny pilot studies have linked to improvements in UTIs.
  • Talk to your doctor about whether you need a prescription for antibiotics after you have sex.

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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 .

SUMMARY

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 (

Wear The Right Underwear

Silky underwear may feel nice against your skin, but only breathable fabrics like cotton avoid trapping moisture, which can lead to increased risk of a UTI. Synthetic materials and tight-fitted clothing can trap moisture and become a breeding ground for bacteria.

Urinary tract infections are common and easy to treat. Many people will get at least one infection in their life. However, UTIs are also easy to prevent. Following the above tips should help a great deal in reducing your chances of getting one. And, if you ever suspect that you might have a UTI, make an appointment with your health care provider as soon as you can.

Casey Spiegel is a nurse practitioner with Planned Parenthood of the St. Louis Region and Southwest Missouri.

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How Do I Stop Getting Urinary Tract Infections

You can take these steps to reduce your risk of urinary tract infections:

  • Drink plenty of liquids, especially water. …
  • Drink cranberry juice. …
  • Wipe from front to back. …
  • Empty your bladder soon after intercourse. …
  • Avoid potentially irritating feminine products. …
  • Change your birth control method.
  • What About Cranberry Juice

    How to Prevent a Urinary Tract Infection

    Thereâs no harm in trying it. But itâs not a proven fix.

    Over the years, a lot of studies have focused on a substance found in cranberries thatâs thought to prevent bacteria from sticking to the lining of the urinary tract. But none of these studies have shown how much of this substance it would take to help prevent UTIs.

    If you still want to give it a try, drinking cranberry juice or taking cranberry pills is probably fine to do. But there are some exceptions, like if you take a blood-thinning medication, a medication that affects the liver, or aspirin. Itâs always wise to talk to your doctor first, before you try any supplements.

    Show Sources

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    What Can You Do To Prevent Recurrent Utis

    If you are suffering from recurrent UTIs, you must get in touch with your primary care physician or a urologist. After carefully evaluating your condition, he/she will design an appropriate course of treatment.

    Also, there are a lot of ways through which you can minimize your chances of getting UTIs. For this,

    • Drink plenty of water It will help you get flush out all the bacteria through urine.
    • Do not hold your pee If you feel the urge to urinate, find a bathroom and go.
    • Maintain good sexual hygiene Do not indulge in unhealthy sexual activities. Also, urinate shortly after sex.
    • Always use clean washrooms Make sure the washroom that you are using is clean and fresh.
    • Use dermatologically tested products Always use sprays, deodorants and powders that are medically approved. And avoid using sprays close to your genitals.
    • Keep your genitals clean Always wipe yourself from front to back after urinating.
    • Wear cotton underwear Always prefer cotton panties to help keep your urethra dry.

    Rely On Proven Herbal Remedies

    For generations, healers have relied on nature to provide remedies for UTIs and strengthen urinary tract health. These three time-tested, natural solutions can help protect you against the bacteria and fungus that cause UTIs.

    Cranberry

    Drinking cranberry juice is good, but taking whole cranberry extract works even better. When youre getting the whole cranberry, you get all the power contained in the juice, flesh, skin, and seeds without the added sugar youll find in most cranberry beverages. And whole berry extracts work especially well if youre plagued by recurring UTIs with unbearably frustrating symptoms.

    The full cranberry also delivers more naturally occurring proanthocyanidins , bioactive compounds that help protect against the microbes that cause UTIs. The PACs prevent E. coli and other bacteria from attaching to your urinary tract. And when those infectious bacteria cant get attached, they cant cause UTIs.

    What does that mean to you? Women who took 500 mg of whole cranberry extract every day for 6 months got 58% fewer UTIs during a clinical trial. And another clinical trial showed that women who took the same cranberry extract for just 90 days enjoyed a 36% decrease in UTIs caused by E. coli.

    Black cumin seed

    Hibiscus

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    How To Prevent A Uti In Your 60s

    Theyre painful, irritating and often arrive at the most inopportune times, and unfortunately urinary tract infections are all too common among both men and women.

    Women in particular are more prone to UTIs, which can become more frequent as we age due to changes down there.

    While there are prescription and over-the-counter drugs to treat UTIs, there are also a number of natural ways you can prevent getting one in the first place and avoid those painful trips to the toilet.

    How Are Utis Diagnosed

    11 Efficient Ways to Prevent Urinary Tract Infection

    Only a health care provider can treat urinary tract infections. The first thing a doctor will do is confirm that a person has a UTI by taking a clean-catch urine specimen. At the doctor’s office, you’ll be asked to clean your genital area with disposable wipes and then pee into a sterile cup.

    The sample may be used for a urinalysis or a urine culture . Knowing what bacteria are causing the infection can help your doctor choose the best treatment.

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    How K Health Can Help

    Did you know you can get affordable UTI treatment with the K Health app? Download K to check your symptoms using our AI-driven symptom checker and, if needed, text with a doctor in minutes. K Healths board-certified, U.S.-based doctors can provide a treatment plan and prescription to resolve your symptoms as soon as possible.

    Things You Can Do Yourself

    To help ease pain:

    • takeparacetamolup to 4 times a day to reduce pain and a high temperature for people with a UTI, paracetamol is usually recommended over NSAIDs such as ibuprofen or aspirin
    • you can give childrenliquid paracetamol
    • rest and drink enough fluids so you pass pale urine regularly during the day, especially during hot weather

    It’s important to follow the instructions on the packet so you know how much paracetamol you or your child can take, and how often.

    It may also help to avoid having sex until you feel better.

    You cannot pass a UTI on to your partner, but sex may be uncomfortable.

    Taking cystitis sachets or cranberry products has not been shown to help ease symptoms of UTIs.

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