About Urinary Tract Infections
Urinary tract infections are common infections that can affect the bladder, the kidneys and the tubes connected to them.
Anyone can get them, but theyre particularly common in women. Some women experience them regularly .
UTIs can be painful and uncomfortable, but usually pass within a few days and can be easily treated with antibiotics.
This page is about UTIs in adults. There is a separate article about UTIs in children.
This page covers:
What Causes Urinary Tract Infections
UTIs usually happen because bacteria enter the urethra, then make their way up into the bladder and cause an infection. Girls get UTIs much more often than guys, most likely due to differences in the shape and length of the urethra. Girls have shorter urethras than guys, and the opening lies closer to the anus and the vagina, where bacteria are likely to be.
Bacteria can get into the urethra several ways. During sex, for example, bacteria in the vaginal area may be pushed into the urethra and eventually end up in the bladder, where pee provides a good environment for the bacteria to grow. This is why females who are sexually active often get UTIs.
Bacteria may also get into a girl’s bladder if she wipes from back to front after a bowel movement , which can contaminate the urethral opening. The use of spermicides and diaphragms as contraceptives also may increase the risk of UTIs.
Sexually transmitted diseases may cause UTI-like symptoms, such as pain with peeing. This is due to the inflammation and irritation of the urethra or vagina that’s sometimes associated with chlamydia and other STDs. If untreated, STDs can lead to serious long-term problems, including pelvic inflammatory disease and infertility. Unlike UTIs, STDs are contagious.
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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Does Cranberry Juice Cure Utis
Cranberry juice and cranberry extract have been commonly used to treat and prevent UTIs and while cranberry certainly cant hurt and can help, its not a one and done solution for UTIs. There isnt a common consensus on whether or not cranberry actually reduces the number of UTIs a woman gets as studies have shown both that and the opposite. Dont expect that cranberry will cure a UTI without antibiotics. But if the pain is unbearable before you can get to the doctor, it can provide some relief.
Do Women Get Utis More Than Men
UTIs are most common in women, with nearly 40 percent experiencing the condition at least once in their lifetime. Women are four times more likely than men to come down with the infection.
Women are more susceptible to UTIs due to differences in their anatomy, explains Dr. Arreguin. Urinary tract infections occur when bacteria are able to reach your urethra and, from there, travel up to your bladder.
In many cases, the bacteria spreads from the anus, which is in closer proximity to a womans urethra than a mans, which means having sex can also introduce bacteria into your urinary tract.
Additionally, a mans urethra is much longer so bacteria often arent able to access the bladder, adds Dr. Arreguin.
However, as men age, they do become more prone to UTIs, especially if they have issues with their prostate.
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Can A Cat Get Over A Uti On Its Own
In addition to blood work or x-rays, we may also recommend treatment if the symptoms are severe. It is possible for some urinary tract infections to heal on their own, but antibiotics will be prescribed if necessary. It is best to follow all the instructions a vet gives you in order to prevent a relapse or re-intestinal infection.
Will Urinary Tract Infections Go Away On Their Own
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Can You Stop A Uti Early
However, the body can often resolve minor, uncomplicated UTIs on its own without the help of antibiotics. By some estimates, 2542 percent of uncomplicated UTI infections clear on their own. In these cases, people can try a range of home remedies to speed up recovery. Complicated UTIs will require medical treatment.
How To Prevent Your Cats From Urinary Tract Infection
To evaluate all the urinary tract diseases in a cat quickly right after these symptoms occur, all cat parents should be aware of their signs. And to find out the causes of your cats urinary tract problem to treat, there is no better way than taking them to a reliable vet.
Also, there is no one but your vet that can give you and your cat the best advice. By having a clean cat litter box, following your vet visit, and making their cats diet changes, you can give your cat a much more healthy life to decrease the likelihood for UTI to come back. That way, there is no need to think about How long does it take for a UTI to go away in a cat?
After knowing that your cats are suffering from urinary tract infections and choosing the best treatment options for them, the next question to pop up on your mind is How long does it take for a UTI to go away in a cat? Were here to help. Make sure to check out our post carefully.
Practice Good Sexual Hygiene
The also says that sexual intercourse introduces bacteria and other microbes from outside the body to the urinary tract. Practicing good sexual hygiene can help to reduce the number of bacteria that people can transfer during intercourse and other sexual acts.
Examples of good sexual hygiene include:
- urinating before and immediately after sex
- using barrier contraception, such as a condom
- washing the genitals, especially the foreskin, before and after engaging in sexual acts or intercourse
- washing the genitals or changing condoms if switching from anal sex to vaginal sex
- ensuring that sexual partners are aware of any current or previous UTIs
How Does It Occur
Normally the urinary tract does not have any bacteria or other organisms in it. Bacteria that cause UTI often spread from the rectum to the urethra and then to the bladder or kidneys. Sometimes bacteria spread from another part of the body through the bloodstream to the urinary tract. Urinary tract infection is less common in men than in women because the male urethra is long, making it difficult for bacteria to spread to the bladder.
Urinary tract infection may be caused by a sexually transmitted disease. Sometimes a stone in the urinary tract blocks the flow of urine and causes an infection. In older men, an enlarged prostate can cause a urinary tract infection by keeping urine from draining out of the bladder completely. Infection might also be caused by the use of a catheter used to drain the bladder or by urethral stricture, which is a narrowing of the urethra by scar tissue from previous infections or surgical procedures.
You may be more likely to have a UTI if you have diabetes or another medical problem that affects the immune system.
Why Antibiotics Sometimes Dont Work
Most UTIs arent serious. But if left untreated, the infection can spread up to the kidneys and bloodstream and become life threatening. Kidney infections can lead to kidney damage and kidney scarring.
Symptoms of a UTI usually improve within 2 to 3 days after starting antibiotic therapy. Many doctors prescribe an antibiotic for at least 3 days.
While this type of medication is the standard treatment, researchers are noticing that antibiotic-resistant bacteria are reducing the effectiveness of some antibiotics in treating UTIs.
Some UTIs dont clear up after antibiotic therapy. When an antibiotic medication doesnt stop the bacteria from causing an infection, the bacteria continue to multiply.
The overuse or misuse of antibiotics is often the reason for antibiotic resistance. This can happen when the same antibiotic is prescribed over and over again for recurrent UTIs. Because of this risk, experts have been looking for ways to treat UTIs without antibiotics.
Some research has shown that UTIs can be treated without traditional antibiotics by targeting E. colis surface component for adhesion, FimH.
Typically, the urinary tract flushes away bacteria when you urinate. But according to researchers, FimH can cause E. coli to firmly attach to the cells in the urinary tract. And because of this tight grip, its hard for the body to naturally flush the bacteria from the urinary tract.
Why You Should Never Ignore The Symptoms Of A Uti
According to the NIH, urinary tract infections are the most common infection in the U.S. Half of women have at least one UTI in their lifetimes. Men are susceptible, too, although their longer ureters protect their urinary tract from bacteria and other pathogens.
How do you know if you have a UTI? The experts at Rose Family Practice and Urgent Care in Vancouver and Battle Ground, Washington, recommend you contact them for a UTI evaluation if you experience symptoms such as:
- Strong, persistent urge to urinate
- Frequent urination, small amounts of urine at a time
- Urine thats pink, red, or brown
- Bloody or cloudy urine
- Burning sensation when you urinate
- Pain or pressure in your lower abdomen, lower back, or pelvis
- Urine that smells strange
- Fatigue, fever, or chills
Most UTIs can be resolved with a course of antibiotics. Not treating a UTI can spread the infection and cause serious and even life-threatening health issues.
Some UTIs dont have symptoms. If you already know that youre prone to UTIs, staying on top of your health with regular exams at Rose Family Practice will help keep infections in check, protect the health of your other organs, and minimize your risk for chronic UTIs.
If you do have symptoms, get help right way. Consequences of an untreated UTI include:
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How Long Does Uti Symptoms Last
A UTI is defined as an infection in the urinary tract of a person. This is a part of the body that stores and removes urine from the body. Some of the common organs that make up the urinary tract include
The recent research shows that the infection is caused by a certain type of bacteria. The infection happens in the following ways:
- When an individual wipes from the back to the front after bowel movement. This enhances entry of bacteria into the urethra.
- Having unprotected sexual intercourse with an infected person. The bacteria get pushed into the urethra.
- Overstaying of urine in the bladder that creates a conducive atmosphere for the multiplication of the bacteria resulting in UTI.
- Using certain methods of birth control such as diaphragm or spermicides with a diaphragm or on a condom.
- Some medical conditions such as diabetes and patients with kidney stones
- Hormonal imbalances such as reduced the levels of estrogen and change in the vagina during menopause.
- Having had a catheter in place.
It is recommended to consult a medical professional after detecting the following symptoms which last for a short period after medication depending on the health condition of a person.
Some of the common symptoms include:
- Frequent urge to pass urine
- Pain accompanied when urinating
- Pressure on the lower belly
- Urine that smells bad or looks milky, cloudy, or reddish in color.
- Having fever.
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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What Are The Signs & Symptoms Of Utis
UTIs can cause such signs as:
- pain, burning, or a stinging sensation when peeing
- an increased urge or more frequent need to pee
- waking up at night a lot to go to the bathroom
- belly pain in the area of the bladder
- foul-smelling pee that may look cloudy or contain blood
If you have any symptoms of a UTI, you’ll need to go to a doctor right away. The sooner you begin treatment, the less uncomfortable you’ll be. Call your doctor’s office or clinic. If you can’t reach your doctor, you can visit an urgent care center or hospital emergency room. The most important thing is to take action as soon as possible.
Apple Cider Vinegar For Utis
Apple cider vinegar is widely known and used for its amazing health benefits, and its a natural remedy for UTIs, too. Its acidifying nature is great at clearing UTIs, and it helps prevent bacteria from spreading, stopping the infection before it reaches the kidneys. Try Braggs organic raw apple cider vinegar. Its gluten-free and contains Mother of Vinegar, a healthy bacteria that occurs naturally as strand-like enzymes of connected protein molecules. Its also loaded with vitamins and prebiotics, which relieve and prevent UTIs.
A version of this article first appeared in our print magazine.
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Recovery Time And Outlook
The recovery time for a staph infection depends on the type and severity of the infection, as well as the strength of a persons immune system.
Food poisoning staph will usually pass within 2448 hours, but it may take 3 days or longer to feel well.
A staph infection at the surface of the skin may heal with just a few days of treatment. However, if a large sore or wound has developed, it may require several weeks of treatment or longer.
If a systemic staph infection develops in the heart, lungs, bloodstream, or another organ system, treatment can take weeks to months. In rare cases, these staph infections can lead to sepsis, a dangerous condition in which the immune system has an exaggerated response to infection.
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
What About Kidney Stones Are They Involved Here Somehow
Sort of. A kidney stone isnt an infection, but a collection of salt and minerals that hardens and turns into a stone. While some stones may be small others can be much larger. They may stay in the kidney, or begin to move into the ureter, the tube that connects the kidney and the bladder. When this happens, kidney stones can become extremely painful.
Kidney stones can be tricky, since they may have many of the same symptoms as a UTI or a kidney infection pain when urinating, needing to urinate often, and cloudy or strong smelling urine, blood in the urine, fever, nausea or vomiting. And while stones often pass on their own, larger stones sometimes need to be broken up, or removed.
Sometimes, kidney stones can lead to a urinary tract infection or a kidney infection, so its important to get them checked out by your doctor. And, since the symptoms are so similar, getting a checkup is probably a good idea anyway just to rule out the possibility of an infection, and to make sure the stone is moving along as it should.