Treatment Of Urinary Tract Infections
UTIs result in considerable economic and public health burdens and substantially affect the life quality of afflicted individuals. Currently, antibiotics such as trimethoprim sulfamethoxazole, ciprofloxacin and ampicillin are the most commonly recommended therapeutics for UTIs. However, increasing rates of antibiotic resistance and high recurrence rates threaten to greatly enhance the burden that these common infections place on society. Ideally, alternative therapies will be established that will be recalcitrant to the development of resistance. Many promising approaches are being developed, from leveraging what we have learned about the basic biology of UTI pathogenesis to specifically target virulence pathways. These antivirulence therapeutics should theoretically allow us to effectively neutralize, or disarm, the capacity of UTI pathogens to cause disease, without altering the gut commensal microbiota, because antivirulence therapeutics target processes that are critical for UTI pathogenesis but that are not required for the essential processes of growth and cell division .
The Best Natural Remedies For Bladder Infections
Bladder infections are more common than you think. In fact, roughly 1 out of every 2 women will get a bladder infection in their lifetime.
Also known as urinary tract infections , bladder infections are commonly caused by E. coli bacterium. Symptoms include frequent and painful urination. In the worst cases, patients see blood in their urine and have pain in the abdominal area.
Read on to learn how to treat bladder infections without traditional medicine. Explore 7 of the best natural remedies for bladder infections.
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
Read Also: Can Cranberry Juice Cure A Urinary Tract Infection
Load Up On Vitamin C For A Healthy Urinary Tract
Getting plenty of foods high in vitamin C is important because large amounts of vitamin C make urine more acidic. This inhibits the growth of bacteria in your urinary tract, according to Johns Hopkins Medicine’s health library. However, if you have an active UTI, you may want to avoid citrus or other acidic foods. These foods are known to irritate the bladder, which is the last thing you need when youre having pain urinating.
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.
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A Pharmacist Can Help With Utis
You can ask a pharmacist about treatments for a UTI. A pharmacist can:
- offer advice on things that can help you get better
- suggest the best painkiller to take
- tell you if you need to see a GP about your symptoms
Some pharmacies offer a UTI management service and can prescribe antibiotics if they’re needed.
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Use Essential Oils With Caution
Oregano essential oil is well known for its strong antibacterial properties. Studies have shown that oregano oil can be very effective at killing E.coli, but it should be noted these studies are generally done in vitromeaning in a lab using scientific techniques, not performed in humans with infections. Lemongrass oil and clove oil may also be a home remedy for UTIs because of their antimicrobial properties, but both have been studied against harmful bacteria in similar experiments as Oregano oil.
Its important to take care before using essential oils as a treatment. The National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy advises against ingesting these oils. Instead, essential oils may be safely used topically with a carrier oil or inhaled from a diffuser.
Urinary Tract Infection Diagnosis
If you think you might have a UTI, dont worry. Diagnosing one requires a simple urinalysis. You urinate into a cup, and your clinician examines the urine for signs of infection. The standard course of treatment is three to five days of antibiotics.
In some cases, especially if your infections keep coming back, your practitioner may order a urine culture, a specific test for UTIs. A culture identifies the bacteria causing your infection so your clinician can choose the most effective antibiotic to treat it. The results of a urine culture are typically not available for two to four days.
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When To See A Healthcare Provider
Conversations about urinary symptoms can be uncomfortable, but if youre experiencing symptoms consistent with a UTI, its best to seek medical advice. Your provider can order tests if needed, discuss treatment options, and help you understand the cause of your infection, as well as providing strategies to prevent recurrences.
The sooner you seek help, the sooner those painful symptoms will be goneand you can go back to getting a good nights sleep.
Causes And Risk Factors Of Utis
Common risk factors for urinary tract infection in women include:
- Sexual activity: You are at an increased risk for urinary tract infections from intercourse and even your birth control, according to Mann. A diaphragm, spermicide and some vaginal lubricants can change the bacterial makeup of the vagina, leading to increased risk of UTI for some women.
- Immune system suppression: Chronic or acute illnesses can weaken the bodys immune system and defense against bacteria, leaving you vulnerable to a UTI,says Mann.
- Voiding dysfunction: Conditions that make it hard to completely empty the bladder can raise the risk of a urinary tract infection. These include spinal cord injury or neuropathy, a condition that affects nerve function.
- Menopause: Mann explains that during menopause your bodys pH levels change, which alters the vaginas bacterial flora . This change in bacterial makeup increases your risk of UTI.
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How K Health Can Help
When you have a UTI, all you want is relief. Did you know you can get affordable primary care with the K Health app? to check your symptoms, explore conditions and treatments, and if needed text with a healthcare professional in minutes. K Healths AI-powered app is HIPAA compliant and based on 20 years of clinical data.
K Health articles are all written and reviewed by MDs, PhDs, NPs, or PharmDs and are for informational purposes only. This information does not constitute and should not be relied on for professional medical advice. Always talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of any treatment.
K Health has strict sourcing guidelines and relies on peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions, and medical associations. We avoid using tertiary references.
When To See A Vet
These at-home treatments and remedies may be effective for clearing up minor infections, but more serious infections need to be treated by a professional animal doctor.
If your cat is experiencing mild or moderate symptoms, you can try these remedies to relieve their symptoms. If their symptoms show no sign of improvement in a few days, talk to a veterinarian. If your cat seems to be in pain or is unable to pass urine, see a vet immediately. This could be a sign of urethral obstruction, which can be fatal if not treated within 24 to 48 hours.
A vet may be able to prescribe antibiotics to target the harmful bacteria. Be sure to give your cat the full dose of prescribed antibiotics to prevent the UTI from returning or becoming resistant to treatment.
Even if youre pursuing professional treatment, these remedies can be effectively used alongside antibiotics to strengthen the bladder and balance your cats pH levels. Some can also be used as a daily supplement to prevent the UTI from coming back.
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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.
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Small Molecules Targeting Bacterial Adhesion
Our detailed understanding of pilus assembly and pilusreceptor binding has opened the door to the development of two classes of small, rationally designed synthetic compounds to inhibit pili: mannosides, which inhibit pilus function and pilicides, which inhibit pilus assembly. Targeting CUP pilus function or assembly has therapeutic potential, as it should block UPEC colonization, invasion and biofilm formation, thus preventing disease,,,.
Mannosides, which are FimH receptor analogues, have been developed to bind FimH with high affinity and block FimH binding to mannosylated receptors,,. Mannosides are potent FimH antagonists that offer a promising therapeutic opportunity for the treatment and prevention of UTIs by interrupting key hostpathogen interactions. Studies in mouse models have demonstrated the potential of mannosides as novel therapeutic strategies against UTIs: mannosides are orally bioavailable they are potent and fast-acting therapeutics in treating and preventing UTIs they function by preventing bladder colonization and invasion they are effective against multidrug-resistant UPEC they potentiate antibiotic efficacy and they are effective against established UTIs and CAUTIs,,,.
Can Home Remedies Quickly Treat A Uti
As resistance to antibiotics is becoming more common, many people are looking for ways to avoid using them. While this can be a good thing in some cases, it can draw out your illness in other instances.
The most commonly asked about home remedy for UTIs is cranberry. Drinking cranberry juice or taking cranberry tablets has been long-touted as a natural alternative for treating UTIs. The thought is that cranberry makes your urine more acidic which, in turn, kills the bacteria causing your infection.
Unfortunately, cranberry does not treat UTIs very well. On the flip side, though, it can be useful for helping to prevent infections if youre prone to them. This seems to also be the case for other acidic fruits like lemon. Just be sure if youre going to try this for preventing future UTIs that you drink unsweetened juice, as sugar actually helps bacteria to grow.
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Ways To Conquer Painful Uti Symptoms
Did you know that women are up to 30–thirty!–times as likely to get a urinary tract infection as men are? Theres a whole list of things to love about being a woman, but the increased likelihood of having a UTI isnt one of them.
Painful symptoms can make UTIs burdensome and inconvenient. So lets talk about the home remedies and medications that could help you manage UTI symptoms or cure a UTI.
Are Some People At A Higher Risk Of Getting A Uti
Women get more UTIs than men. This is because women have a shorter urethra the tube that brings urine out of the bladder. This allows bacteria to enter the urethra and bladder more easily.
Also, a womans urethral opening is closer to the anus, where most UTI-causing E.coli bacteria are found.
Other factors that can further increase the risk of UTI include:
- frequent sexual activity
UTIs cant always be avoided, but its possible to reduce your risk of getting one. Here are nine prevention methods that may help you sidestep a UTI.
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Home Remedies For Utis
When bacteria enter the urinary tract system, it can cause a urinary tract infection. Bacteria, and specifically Escherichia coli , is the most common cause of UTIs, but dehydration, holding urination for a long time, certain health conditions, and hormonal changes can also cause a UTI or increase your risk of infection. The average UTI can last anywhere from a few days to more than a week. Some UTIs will go away on their own, but more severe cases require medical attention. With antibiotic treatment, many people with severe UTIs start to feel relief within a couple of days. For mild UTIs, home remedies may help alleviate symptoms, and/or prevent infections from developing.
Here are some of the most common home remedies for UTIs:
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.
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Can A Urinary Tract Infection Be Prevented
Many methods have been suggested to reduce or prevent UTIs. The single most important prevention measure is increased fluid intake. Many people develop UTIs simply because they do not drink enough fluids. Some of these are considered home remedies and have been discussed . There are other suggestions that may help prevent UTIs. Good hygiene for males and females is useful. For females, wiping from front to back helps keep pathogens that may reside or pass through the anal opening away from the urethra. For males, retracting the foreskin before urinating reduces the chance of urine lingering at the urethral opening and acting as a culture media for pathogens. Incomplete bladder emptying and resisting the normal urge to urinate can allow pathogens to survive and replicate easier in a non-flowing system. Some clinicians recommend washing before and urinating soon after sex to reduce the chance of urethritis and cystitis. Many clinicians suggest that anything that causes a person irritation in the genital area may encourage UTI development. Wearing underwear that is somewhat adsorptive may help wick away urine drops that otherwise may be areas for pathogen growth.
Which Antibiotic Will Work Best
Your doctor will take a urine sample to confirm that you have a UTI. Then the lab will grow the germs in a dish for a couple of days to find out which type of bacteria you have. This is called a culture. Itâll tell your doctor what type of germs caused your infection. Theyâll likely prescribe one of the following antibiotics to treat it before the culture comes back:
Which medication and dose you get depends on whether your infection is complicated or uncomplicated.
âUncomplicatedâ means your urinary tract is normal. âComplicatedâ means you have a disease or problem with your urinary tract. You could have a narrowing of your ureters, which are the tubes that carry urine from your kidneys to your bladder, a narrowing in the urethra which transports urine from the bladder out of the body, or, you might have a blockage like a kidney stone or an enlarged prostate . It’s also possible you have a urinary fistula or a bladder diverticulum.
To treat a complicated infection, your doctor might prescribe a higher dose of antibiotics. If your UTI is severe or the infection is in your kidneys, you might need to be treated in a hospital or doctor’s office with high-dose antibiotics you get through an IV.
Your doctor will also consider these factors when choosing an antibiotic:
- Are you over age 65?
- Are you allergic to any antibiotics?
- Have you had any side effects from antibiotics in the past?
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