What Is The Urinary Tract
The urinary tract makes and stores urine, one of the body’s liquid waste products. The urinary tract includes the following parts:
- Kidneys: These small organs are located on back of your body, just above the hips. They are the filters of your body removing waste and water from your blood. This waste becomes urine.
- Ureters: The ureters are thin tubes that carry urine from the kidneys to your bladder.
- Bladder: A sac-like container, the bladder stores your urine before it leaves the body.
- Urethra: This tube carries the urine from your bladder to the outside of the body.
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.
When To Try Home Remedies
Adults with mild symptoms may want to try natural remedies before taking a prescription or while waiting for the effects to kick in.
Thomas Hooton, MD, professor of clinical medicine at the University of Miami School of Medicine, recommended that patients with recurrent infections who have mild symptoms “try to treat it naturally with increased fluid and some pain relief.” If UTI symptoms improve in a day or two, “well, then, you’ve saved yourself an antibiotic,” Dr. Hooten told Health.
That’s important, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention , because overuse of antibiotics can render these drugs ineffective against future bacterial infections, including recurrent UTIs.
If symptoms are bad or don’t improve, said Dr. Hooton, “call the doctor and get an antibiotic.”
In the meantime, some home remedies may be effective at easing symptoms whether or not your healthcare provider prescribes antibiotics.
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Drinking Plenty Of Fluids
Drinking lots of water is one of the best home treatments for UTI. Dehydration is itself a risk factor for developing a UTI, and regular urination can help remove bacteria from the urinary tract, which can help prevent infection.
In fact, studies show people who increase their water intake from less than 1.5 daily liters to 2.2 liters a day experience fewer UTIs.
Its commonly recommended to drink around 64 ounces of water daily, but everyones hydration needs are different. As a general rule, drink water throughout the day and whenever you feel thirsty.
When you are well-hydrated, your urine is typically clear or straw colored. You should also avoid caffeinated or alcoholic drinks when you have a UTI or want to prevent one.
Natural Home Remedies For Uti
Here are eight effective natural remedies for UTI that contain these three properties.
Drinking plenty of water is, of course, the most important thing to do when youre experiencing from a bad case of UTI. It works by flushing out bacteria from your urinary tract. Although more trips to the bathroom may not sound like an appealing idea, doing so would help relieve your symptoms much faster. If youre getting your fill of eight glasses of water a day, try drinking even more fluids for a quicker solution.
2. Heat packs
UTI can cause abdominal discomfort due to a combination of spasms and inflammation. When this happens, you need something to relax your muscles. A heat pack, or even a bottle of warm water, would help you manage the pain. If youre using a water bottle as a makeshift heat pack, make sure to wrap it first with a towel before placing it over your abdomen. Avoid pressing on your bladder so as not to cause further complications. You may do this for as long as necessary.
3. Vitamin C
Also known as ascorbic acid, Vitamin C works for UTIs for two reasons: first, they boost the bodys immune system, and second, they make the urine more acidic, making it more robust against bacteria. To fight UTI, therefore, you need to eat food rich in vitamin C or take supplements.
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Wipe From Front To Back
This one is more about prevention. Because many UTIs develop from the spread of bacteria from the rectum, its important to pay attention to how you wipe both after a bowel movement and after urinating. Always wipe from front to back to avoid spreading bacteria to the urethra, and on to the urinary tract.
How Long Do Utis Last
With antibiotic treatment, symptoms of a UTI typically improve within 2 to 4 days.
But this can vary depending on many factors, including how quickly you receive treatment, the severity of your infection, and whether or not any complications arise.
Keep in mind that the course of antibiotics should be completed for UTI symptoms to completely resolve and prevent recurrent infections.
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A Note About Antibiotics For Bladder Infections
Antibiotics are standard treatment for UTIs. The problem with this is that antibiotics dont just kill the bacteria causing the UTI they also destroy the healthy bacteria in your dogs gut. Remember that many holistic vets say that urinary tract problems in dogs are actually inflammation, not an infection. So using antibiotics will damage your dogs microbiome without effectively treating the real cause of your dogs UTI. Thats why UTIs become chronic recurrent infections in many dogs. Urinary concentration of antibiotics is also a factor. The drugs are less effective if they dont achieve high antimicrobial concentrations. In fact, a 2014 review of antibiotics for UTIs at University of Copehagen concluded: there is little published evidence relating to antibiotic treatment of UTIs in dogs and cats. Well-designed clinical trials focusing on the duration of treatment are warranted to create evidence-based treatment protocols.
Antibiotic resistance is also a concern. The more your dog takes antibiotics, the less effective they are. So save them for when theyre truly necessary and avoid antimicrobial resistance thats becoming a problem for all of us!
Symptoms Of Urinary Tract Infection:
UTI is associated with irritation and redness of the urinary tract lining. The following symptoms may be experienced by a person having a UTI:
- Pressure in the lower groin region
- Frequent urge to urinate, an urgency to pass urine or incontinence
- Need to urinate at night
- Pain while urinating
- Abnormal colour of your urine and a strong or foul smell emitting from your urine
- A pain in the side or flank, groin area or abdomen.1
Other symptoms that you might notice if you have a UTI are:
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Other Ways To Prevent Some Utis Coming Back
If you keep getting a bladder infection , there’s some evidence it may be helpful to take:
- D-mannose a sugar you can buy as a powder or tablets to take every day
- cranberry products available as juice, tablets or capsules to take every day
Speak to your doctor before taking any of these during pregnancy.
Be aware that D-mannose and cranberry products can contain a lot of sugar.
If you’re taking warfarin, you should avoid cranberry products.
Page last reviewed: 22 March 2022 Next review due: 22 March 2025
Underlying Mechanisms For Uti Prevention
When asked how the vaccine works to prevent UTIs, Harry Mobley, Ph.D., distinguished university professor at the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at the University of Michigan, not involved in the study, told MNT:
The vaccine should work by stimulating the production of antibodies that may bind to the surface of and assist the immune system in killing the bacteria or clearing them by engulfing them in innate immune cells such as neutrophils.
Dr. Mobley praised the authors for including several proteins to cover various E.coli strains.
He noted the antigens the researchers used to create their vaccines are proteins on the surface of bacteria that are produced during infection and that these proteins are involved in scavenging iron for the bacteria.
Dr. Mobley further noted that the vaccine is a very major advance and that the nanofibers by which it works may speed its uptake, thus making its delivery more efficient.
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Does Azo Cure Uti
Before you go to the doctor to get treatment for a urinary tract infection, you can take over-the-counter medicine, known as âAZO Urinary Pain Reliefâ or âAZO Urinary Pain Relief Maximum Strengthâ. You can take these tablets for about 2 days to cure the painful symptoms of the UTI. But, make sure you tell your doctor if you are having this medication. You can take AZO Cranberry tablets once your UTI is cured in order to maintain the health of the urinary tract.
Is It Safe To Treat Utis Without Antibiotics
Antibiotics are effective treatments for UTIs. Sometimes, the body can resolve minor, uncomplicated UTIs on its own, without antibiotics.
Complicated UTIs require medical treatment. These are some factors that can make the infection complicated:
- changes in the urinary tract or organs, such as a swollen prostate or reduced flow of urine
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When To Contact A Doctor
If a person suspects that they have a UTI, they should ask a healthcare professional for advice about the best way to treat it.
Antibiotics may not always be necessary, but it is still important to seek medical attention. This reduces the risk of developing a more severe infection that is harder to treat.
Below are answers to some frequently asked questions about treating UTIs.
Causes Of Urinary Tract Infection
UTI mainly occurs due to the following reasons:
- Cystitis: It is one of the most common causes of UTI. It mainly happens due to sexual intercourse when the harmful bacteria from the gastrointestinal tract cause infection in the bladder. Though, sometimes, females can also develop cystitis without having intercourse.
- Urethritis: When the harmful bacteria are pushed back in the urethra, urethritis occurs.
- Traces of blood with urine.
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Home Remedies For Fast Uti Relief
The urge to go to the bathroom, pain during urination, and lower abdominal pressure and pain associated with urinary tract infections can make it difficult to concentrate at work or school, enjoy favorite activities and rest comfortably at night. Fortunately, there are ways that you can get UTI relief through home remedies while your body fights the infection.
How Long Does It Take For A Uti To Go Away Without Antibiotics
It can take around nine days for a UTI to go away with antibiotics. It could take longer to go away without antibiotics, but everyone is different. It’s important to remember that an untreated UTI could lead to complications like a bladder or kidney infection. Make sure to talk to a doctor if you’re experiencing UTI symptoms.
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/8how Do Antibiotics Help In Treating Uti
Antibiotic courses for UTI in women usually last for five days and can stretch if the infection is not cleared. For men, antibiotics are prescribed for a longer period of time.
These medications attack and kill the bacteria causing the infection. The kind of antibiotic you’re prescribed depends on the type of bacteria detected in your urine, your current health situation, and whether your UTI is uncomplicated or complicated.
‘Uncomplicated’ UTI means that your urinary tract is normal, whereas ‘complicated’ UTI means that you have a disease or problem with your urinary tract. This could need further intervention.
Boost Your Immune System
When your body is fighting off an infection, focus on behaviors that strengthen your immune system.
Rest is one of the best ways to ensure your immune system can actively fight off your infection. If you feel tired, take a nap, and aim to get enough sleep at night that you wake feeling well rested. And while it can be stressful to be sick, try your best to stay relaxed too much stress can impair immune function.
Along with proper hydration, its also important to maintain a nutritious diet. Focus on nourishing your body with healthy foods such as fruits and vegetables and whole grains and avoiding sugar and alcohol, which can compromise your immune system.
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What Can I Do At Home To Prevent Future Occurrences Of Flutd
Depending on the underlying cause for FLUTD, the clinical signs may never, or only occasionally, reoccur. However, recurrence is more common with FIC. To help reduce the chances of recurrence:
- Feed small meals on a frequent basis.
- Consult with your veterinarian about the best diet for your cat. Many commercial diets are acceptable, but some urinary conditions respond better to specialized diets. Canned food may be preferred.
- Provide clean, fresh water at all times.
- Provide an adequate number of litter boxes with the type of litter that the cat prefer
- Keep litter boxes in quiet, safe areas of the house.
- Keep litter boxes clean they should be scooped twice a day and the litter changed weekly .
- Minimize major changes in routine.
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Drink Plenty Of Fluids
Dehydration is linked to an increased risk of UTIs.
This is because regular urination can help flush bacteria from the urinary tract to prevent infection. When youre dehydrated, you arent urinating as often, which can create a breeding ground for bacteria.
A examined nursing home residents and administered a drinking schedule to participants to increase their fluid intake. Following the schedule decreased UTIs requiring antibiotics by 56%.
In a 2020 randomized control trial , 140 premenopausal participants prone to UTIs took part in a 12-month study to test if a higher fluid intake would decrease their risk of recurrent cystitis and, in turn, their risk of developing a UTI. Researchers found that an increase in fluid intake led to a decrease in UTI frequency.
To stay hydrated and meet your fluid needs, its best to drink water throughout the day and always when youre thirsty.
Benefits of drinking more fluids for UTI
Drinking plenty of liquids can decrease your risk of UTIs by making you pee more, which helps remove bacteria from your urinary tract.
evidence suggests that increasing your intake of vitamin C could protect against UTIs.
Vitamin C is thought to work by increasing the acidity of urine, killing off the bacteria that cause infection.
An older 2007 study of UTIs in pregnant women looked at the effects of taking 100 milligrams of vitamin C every day.
Fruits and vegetables are especially high in vitamin C and are a good way to increase your intake.
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Can Men Get Utis From Women
Men can get UTIs from women during sex, by getting the bacteria from a woman with the infection. However, this is unlikely.
Typically, the infection arises from bacteria that are already present in the mans body.
A doctor can diagnose a UTI by carrying out a physical examination, taking a medical history, and through laboratory tests.
The doctor may perform a physical examination that includes:
- checking the vital signs
- checking the abdomen, bladder area, sides, and back for pain or swelling
- examining the genitals
The doctor may ask if the person has had other UTIs in the past, or a family history of UTIs.
They may also question the person about their symptoms.
Laboratory tests are required to diagnose the infection as the symptoms of a UTI can be common to other diseases.
A urine sample is usually needed to look for the presence of pus and the bacteria causing the infection.
Men may be asked to give a urine sample. A man will need to start the urine stream to clean the urethra, and then collect a midstream sample in a cup. As bacteria multiply quickly at room temperature, this urine sample is either sent to the laboratory immediately or kept refrigerated until later.
The doctor may also ask for a urine test strip, also known as a urine dipstick test. This is a quick test in which a plastic or paper ribbon is dipped into the urine sample and then removed. If the person has a UTI, the ribbon will turn a particular color.
Treatment From A Gp For Utis That Keep Coming Back
If your UTI comes back after treatment, or you have 2 UTIs in 6 months, a GP may:
- prescribe a different antibiotic or prescribe a low-dose antibiotic to take for up to 6 months
- prescribe a vaginal cream containing oestrogen, if you have gone through the menopause
- refer you to a specialist for further tests and treatments
In some people, antibiotics do not work or urine tests do not pick up an infection, even though you have UTI symptoms.
This may mean you have a long-term UTI that is not picked up by current urine tests. Ask the GP for a referral to a specialist for further tests and treatments.
Long-term UTIs are linked to an increased risk of bladder cancer in people aged 60 and over.
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Home Remedies For Urinary Tract Infection:
Research is being conducted worldwide to discover natural and safe methods to treat diseases. Limited evidence is present regarding the use of natural products for urinary tract infections. Home remedies for urinary tract infections discussed here must be backed up by more research to prove their effectiveness. However, some of the herbs having the potential to be helpful for UTIs are described below.