Antibiotic Warnings And Treatment Concerns
The most commonly prescribed antibiotics for uncomplicated UTIs are similar in efficacy. But its important to note that ampicillin, amoxicillin, and sulfonamides are no longer the drugs of choice for combatting UTIs because of the emergence of antibiotic resistance. In addition, amoxicillin and clavulanate has been shown in previous research to be significantly less effective than others when it comes to treating urinary tract infections.
Also, as noted above, the FDA advises against using fluoroquinolones for uncomplicated UTIs. These medicines should only be considered if no other treatment options are available. In some cases, such as a complicated UTI or kidney infection, a healthcare provider may decide that a fluoroquinolone medicine is the best option, notes the American Academy of Family Physicians.
For pregnant women, some common antibiotics, such as fluoroquinolones and tetracyclines, should not be prescribed because of possible toxic effects on the fetus. But oral nitrofurantoin and cephalexin are considered good antibiotic choices for pregnant women with asymptomatic bacteriuria and acute cystitis, according to past research.
Why Antibiotics Are The Golden Standard
Urinary tract infections occur due to an external bacterial infection in the urinary tract of a body. The most common treatment option is a course of antibiotic therapy that targets the pathogens and the bacteria causing the infection.
The appropriate antibiotic course leads to higher symptomatic and bacteriological cure rates and significantly reduces the chances of reinfection. The types of antibiotics prescribed as the first line of treatment are based upon the type of bacteria found in your urine after the urine analysis, your health status, and the severity of the infection.
Basic Considerations When Buying Medicine For Uti
With so many different types of UTI medicine, it can be easy to make the wrong purchase. To save yourself from a bad buy and a potentially harmful product, make sure you consider these factors to help you land the best over the counter UTI medicine.
- Effects. It pays to keep in mind that a urinary tract infection is a bacteria-caused infection, and that means the best medicine for UTI should be an antibiotic however, because antibiotics for UTI cant be purchased over the counter, its the second best choice to buy a product that promotes urinary tract health to fight off the infection.
Most of the products you will find are much less geared towards healing the infection itself, and are formulated to provide health effects that improve the wellness of the overall system. In doing this, these medicines are able to encourage the body to fight off the infection, thus causing the infection to weaken over time.
- Homeopathic. Because over the counter UTI remedies are more focused on improving health than fighting off the infection directly, many of them come as homeopathic remedies. These options are made from all natural ingredients, and do not cause any toxicity associated with long term use.
For some, however, these products may not provide results at all. This always depends on how the body reacts to the formulation. Because homeopathic remedies do not contain any synthetic, clinically designed ingredients, they may or may not work on some people.
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Otc Treatments That Can Help Your Uti
Try these at-home treatments while youre waiting to get your antibiotics . And while youre at it, drink as much water as you can. Peeing often will help flush out more of the gunk and hopefully help you feel better a little faster.
This is basically like Tylenol or Motrin for your urinary tract. It uses a different active ingredient phenazopyridine hydrochloride but the function is pretty much the same. Itll temporarily numb the tissue around your urinary tract to make the whole situation down there a little more tolerable. You can expect relief in as little as 20 minutes that lasts up to 8 hours.
However, note that this can make your urine reddish-orange tinged and can stain fabric. Also dont take it for more than 2 days.
What Is The Prognosis For A Person With A Urinary Tract Infection
Urinary tract infections typically respond very well to treatment. A UTI can be uncomfortable before you start treatment, but once your healthcare provider identifies the type of bacteria and prescribes the right antibiotic medication, your symptoms should improve quickly. Its important to keep taking your medication for the entire amount of time your healthcare provider prescribed. If you have frequent UTIs or if your symptoms arent improving, your provider may test to see if its an antibiotic-resistant infection. These are more complicated infections to treat and may require intravenous antibiotics or alternative treatments.
Herbal Remedies And Vitamins
No herbal remedy has been proven to treat or prevent a UTI, and not all are tested for safety, so its best to discuss any herbal treatments with a healthcare professional first.
There are some herbal supplements that may have anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties that can be helpful in treating UTI symptoms.
Studies have shown that certain herbal supplements, like garlic extract, have strong anti-inflammatory properties and may help reduce the growth of bacteria, including E. coli.
Other natural supplements like D-mannose, a sugar naturally found in foods like cranberries and apples, may have antibacterial properties which can help relieve UTI discomfort. Both can be taken in the form of a capsule.
Cranberry extract or cranberry juice or a vitamin C supplement may also help a UTI go away faster by changing the pH balance of your urine to help keep bacteria from growing.
While not proven to treat a UTI, these may help you feel better faster.
First Line Of Defense
If youre just feeling the first hint of a UTI, you can get ahead of the infection with AZO Urinary Tract Defense®. It includes a pain reliever to help soothe and a powerful antibacterial agent to help control your infection. If youre beyond that stage, relieve painful UTI symptoms FAST with an over-the-counter urinary pain reliever like AZO Urinary Pain Relief® or for a higher dose of the active ingredient, AZO Urinary Pain Relief® Maximum Strength.
Remember: Theres no over-the-counter cure for a UTI. Only your doctor can prescribe a UTI antibiotic to rid the bacteria causing the infection.
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Treating Urinary Tract Infections With Natural Health Remedies
Urinary tract infections can be painful and uncomfortable. While some people choose to go with conventional antibiotic treatments, there are plenty of natural remedies out there to help you feel better in no time. The first thing most people will try is cranberry juice. This works by coating the mucus lining in the bladder to prevent bacteria from sticking. If that doesnt work, you might try increasing your water intake or using certain probiotics.
Urinary tract infections are an incredibly common experience for women, yet many people are not aware that there are natural health remedies that can help curb them. There are many types of UTIs, which range from mild to severe, but when theyre serious it can be difficult to cope with the pain. Luckily, there are natural remedies that have been proven to work to treat these infections, so you dont have to take antibiotics every time they occur.
Urinary tract infections are caused by bacteria that enter the urethra and travel up to the bladder. UTIs can be cured with antibiotics and also with natural remedies such as cranberry juice and olive leaf extract, which offer anti-microbial properties.
Maintaining a healthy diet is another way to prevent UTIs. Switching from white bread to whole grains, cutting out fatty foods, and drinking plenty of water helps the kidneys eliminate toxins.
See A Healthcare Provider
While UTIs arent usually a cause for major concern, if you dont get them treated, they can lead to more serious problems like a kidney infection. If you have a UTI, make an appointment with a healthcare provider as soon as possible. The fastest way to feel better is by taking an antibiotic to kill the bacteria causing your infection.
If going to see a provider in-person is not an option , there are plenty of telehealth services available that will allow you to set up a virtual appointment. Check out GoodRx Care for treatment of UTIs as well as many other medical conditions.
During your appointment, your provider will ask you questions about what symptoms you are experiencing and if you are prone to UTIs. You might be asked to provide a urine sample either in the office you are seen in or at a lab close to you. Lastly, your provider will prescribe you a course of antibiotics to get started on right away.
Some common antibiotics used for treating UTIs include nitrofurantoin , sulfamethoxazole/trimethoprim , and ciprofloxacin . Typically, you only need to take them for 3 to 5 days, and most people start to feel relief within the first 2 to 3 days. Antibiotics can cause nausea, stomach upset, and diarrhea for many people. But, taking your dose with food can help lessen nausea and stomach upset, and taking a probiotic supplement like L. acidophilus can help with the diarrhea.
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Clinical Presentation And Diagnosis
Patients with cystitis often present with a frequent, persistent urge to urinate despite passing a small amount, dysuria or a burning sensation during urination, or suprapubic heaviness.7 Patients with pyelonephritis often experience flank pain or tenderness, a low fever , chills, nausea, vomiting, and malaise with or without symptoms of cystitis.2 Patients with a lower or upper UTI may experience hematuria or notice that their urine is cloudy or has a strong odor. Elderly patients tend to present with nonspecific symptoms including altered mental status, change in eating habits, lower abdominal pain, and gastrointestinal symptoms such as constipation.6
In most patients who present with signs and symptoms of UTIs, a history of illness is the most important diagnostic tool, especially when symptom onset is sudden or severe and when vaginal discharge and irritation are not present.2,3 Sometimes, however, UTI diagnosis cannot rely solely on patient symptoms because some patients are asymptomatic this is more common in older adults than in younger adults.6 Laboratory tests, urine-sample tests, and pelvic examinations should be performed in patients with urinary tract symptoms to properly diagnose UTIs.2,3 Laboratory tests for UTIs include assessments for the presence of bacteriuria and pyuria, nitrite, leukocyte esterase, and antibody-coated bacteria.2
Can You Treat A Uti Without Antibiotics
Antibiotics are an effective treatment for UTIs. However, the body can often resolve minor, uncomplicated UTIs on its own without the help of antibiotics.
Complicated UTIs will require medical treatment. These UTIs involve one or more of the following factors:
More severe risks of using antibiotics include:
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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.
Uti Treatment To Avoid
There are plenty of additional home remedies mentioned by blogs, but none that we would recommend.
- Cranberry juice. Drinking cranberry juice is a common piece of advice associated with UTIs, though the effect of cranberry juice on treating or preventing urinary tract infections is very small.
- Baking soda. The theory behind this was to change the acidity in the urinary tract and discourage bacteria from spreading but there is no evidence to suggest that this actually works in practice.
- Apple cider vinegar. Recommended as a home remedy for the exact same reason baking soda often is, however using apple cider vinegar can actually make a UTI worse. Avoid at all costs.
Read Also: Urinary Urgency Treatment Home Remedies
Get Your Prescription Filled Right Away
Once you are done with your appointment and have received a prescription for an antibiotic, its important you get it filled at a pharmacy as soon as possible. The faster you start taking your medication, the faster your UTI will be gone.
If you usually use next-day prescription delivery or a mail order pharmacy, this is one time when you should avoid doing this. These options can cause a delay by anywhere from 1 day to 1 week . Youre better off using a local pharmacy in this case.
If going into the pharmacy is a concern due to COVID-19, many pharmacies have added options to help minimize the amount of time you are inside the building. Some options to ask about at your pharmacy include:
Same-day delivery through services like Instacart
Using the pharmacys drive-thru pick-up window
Paying ahead of time through the pharmacys smartphone app to make your time spent at the checkout counter faster
Every pharmacy is different, so make sure to ask your personal pharmacy if these options are available at your location.
Other Over The Counter Products For Uti Prevention
Some OTC products do not directly affect the progress of an acute infection, but could help to prevent UTIs in the future:
However, it is crucial to address the reason you had a UTI happened in the first place.
There are multiple factors that can make you more prone to UTIs, such as certain contraceptive methods , diseases that affect vaginal health etc.
Therefore, a holistic approach to UTI prevention is more effective than just treating an acute infection.
Whats your favorite OTC UTI remedy that worked for you?
Written by Anastasia Visotsky, medically reviewed by Dr. Ogunyemi
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How To Cure A Urinary Tract Infection With Diet
The best way to cure a urinary tract infection is to stop the issue with good old-fashioned diet. A large number of women will experience an acute urinary tract infection at some point in their lifetime. The most common symptom, according to the American Academy of Family Physicians, is lower abdominal pain/cramps and frequency of urination. These symptoms are often accompanied by fever, but fever is not always present.
Urinary tract infections can be cured with proper diet and medication. However, there are some foods that you might want to avoid in order to prevent a UTI from occurring. The following two tips can help you cure your UTI with diet:
1. Avoid caffeine and eat plenty of organic grapes and citrus fruits.
2. Drink plenty of water and herbal tea, even if you dont feel like it.
Urinary tract infections are generally caused by bacteria that travels to the urinary tract from other parts of the body. While many people can clear up UTIs with antibiotics, there are other ways to get rid of the infection at home without taking unnecessary medication. A person can use diet changes to help their UTI go away more quickly and be less likely to return in the future.
Remedies And Treatments For Cat Urinary Tract Infection
Urinary tract diseases are common in cats and can cause discomfort and distress. If left untreated, a UTI can lead to partial or complete blockage of the urethra. This can lead to kidney failure or rupture of the bladder, which could be deadly.
Depending on the severity of the infection, a cat UTI can be treated using at-home remedies and treatments.
While cranberries are known as a UTI treatment in humans, they can also be used to treat a cat UTI. The acidity of cranberries can lower the pH of your cats urine, which can help treat a UTI and stop it from coming back.
Many cranberry juices are high in sugar. Instead, you can find cranberry capsules , supplements, or powder to add to your cats diet.
Before giving your cat cranberry, you should first test the pH levels in your cats urine. While the acidity of cranberries may help with some UTIs, in other cases, it could make the condition worse. Only provide cranberry supplements if your cats urine is too alkaline.
Apple cider vinegar can also lower the pH in your cats urine, eliminating and preventing any harmful bacteria. Add half a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar to your cats food each day. To reduce the bitter taste, you can mix it in with chicken or beef broth. Just make sure the broth doesnt contain onions, as this is toxic to cats.
Glucosamine and Chondroitin
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Causes Of Urinary Tract Infections
UTIs are usually caused by bacteria from poo entering the urinary tract.
The bacteria enter through the tube that carries pee out of the body .
Women have a shorter urethra than men. This means bacteria are more likely to reach the bladder or kidneys and cause an infection.
Things that increase the risk of bacteria getting into the bladder include:
- having sex
do not use scented soap
do not hold your pee in if you feel the urge to go
do not rush when going for a pee try to fully empty your bladder
do not wear tight, synthetic underwear, such as nylon
do not drink lots of alcoholic drinks, as they may irritate your bladder
do not have lots of sugary food or drinks, as they may encourage bacteria to grow