How Can You Tell The Difference Between A Uti And Bladder Infection
Bladder infections are a type of UTI that involves the lower urinary tract, including the bladder. A bladder infection can spread to other parts of your urinary tract or kidneys if left untreated. The symptoms of bladder infections and UTIs can be similar. See a doctor if you are experiencing symptoms of a UTI, such as painful or frequent urination, pain in your central lower abdomen, or blood in your urine.
How Is A Uti Diagnosed
Your healthcare provider will ask about your signs and symptoms. Your provider may press on your abdomen, sides, and back to check if you feel pain. You may need any of the following:
- Urinalysis will show infection and your overall health.
- Urine cultures may show which germ is causing your infection.
Treatment Strategies For Recurrent Utis
Recurrent urinary tract infections, defined as three or more UTIs within 12 months, or two or more occurrences within six months, is very common among women these but arent treated exactly the same as standalone UTIs. One of the reasons: Continued intermittent courses of antibiotics are associated with allergic reactions, organ toxicities, future infection with resistant organisms, and more.
Because of this, its strongly recommended that you receive both a urinalysis and urine culture from your healthcare provider prior to initiating treatment. Once the results are in, the American Urological Association suggests that healthcare professionals do the following:
- Use first-line treatments. Nitrofurantoin, TMP-SMX, and fosfomycin are the initial go-tos. However, specific drug recommendations should be dependent on the local antibiogram. An antibiogram is a periodic summary of antimicrobial susceptibilities that helps track drug resistance trends.
- Repeat testing. If UTI symptoms persist after antimicrobial therapy, clinicians should repeat the urinalysis, urine culture, and antibiotic susceptibility testing to help guide further management.
- Try vaginal estrogen. For peri- and post-menopausal women with recurrent UTIs, vaginal estrogen therapy is recommended to reduce risk of future UTIs.
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How Are Utis Diagnosed
To diagnose a UTI, health care providers ask questions about what’s going on, do an exam, and take a sample of pee for testing.
How a sample is taken depends on a child’s age. Older kids might simply need to pee into a sterile cup. For younger children in diapers, a catheter is usually preferred. This is when a thin tube is inserted into the urethra up to the bladder to get a “clean” urine sample.
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.
Why Do Women Get Urinary Tract Infections More Often Than Men
Women tend to get urinary tract infections more often than men because bacteria can reach the bladder more easily in women. The urethra is shorter in women than in men, so bacteria have a shorter distance to travel.
The urethra is located near the rectum in women. Bacteria from the rectum can easily travel up the urethra and cause infections. Bacteria from the rectum is more likely to get into the urethra if you wipe from back to front after a bowel movement. Be sure to teach children how to wipe correctly.
Having sex may also cause urinary tract infections in women because bacteria can be pushed into the urethra. Using a diaphragm can lead to infections because diaphragms push against the urethra and make it harder to completely empty your bladder. The urine that stays in the bladder is more likely to grow bacteria and cause infections.
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Why Uti Pain Happens At Night
According to Eilber, UTI pain and other symptoms arent worse at night. They are just more bothersome because people arent as distracted by their daily activities and the symptoms of frequency and urgency are forcing you to get out of bed.
UTI discomfort may also seem worse because youre not emptying your bladder as much as you would during the day. The pressure from collecting urine then creates discomfort against the inflamed walls of your infected bladder.
To reduce your risk of getting a UTI, there are specific lifestyle steps you can take, including:
- Drink plenty of fluids, especially water.
Causes Of Urinary Tract Infections
Urinary tract infections 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:
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
What Can I Do To Prevent A Uti
- Empty your bladder often. Urinate and empty your bladder as soon as you feel the need. Do not hold your urine for long periods of time.
- Drink liquids as directed. Ask how much liquid to drink each day and which liquids are best for you. You may need to drink more liquids than usual to help flush out the bacteria. Do not drink alcohol, caffeine, or citrus juices. These can irritate your bladder and increase your symptoms. Your healthcare provider may recommend cranberry juice to help prevent a UTI.
- Urinate after you have sex. This can help flush out bacteria passed during sex.
- Do pelvic muscle exercises often. Pelvic muscle exercises may help you start and stop urinating. Strong pelvic muscles may help you empty your bladder easier. Squeeze these muscles tightly for 5 seconds like you are trying to hold back urine. Then relax for 5 seconds. Gradually work up to squeezing for 10 seconds. Do 3 sets of 15 repetitions a day, or as directed.
Who Should Not Take Azo
Azo is an over-the-counter medication used to treat urinary tract infections. The active ingredient in Azo is phenazopyridine, which is a chemical that relieves pain and burning sensations associated with UTIs. While Azo is generally safe for most people, there are some groups of people who should not take the medication.Pregnant women and nursing mothers should avoid taking Azo. Phenazopyridine has been shown to cross the placenta and enter the fetal circulation, so it is best to avoid the medication during pregnancy. Nursing mothers may also pass phenazopyridine into their breast milk, so it is best to avoid Azo while nursing.People with kidney disease or impaired kidney function should also avoid taking Azo. Phenazopyridine is eliminated from the body by the kidneys, so people with kidney problems may have difficulty clearing the drug from their system. This could lead to accumulation of phenazopyridine in the body and potentially dangerous side effects.Azo should also be avoided by people with dehydration or electrolyte imbalances. Dehydration can increase the risk of kidney stones, which could worsen renal function and make it difficult for the body to clear phenazopyridine from its system.
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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.
Can Pregnant Women Take Azo
January 21, 2023 by , MA , Certified Consultant
Azo is a medication that is typically used to treat urinary tract infections. It is generally considered safe for use during pregnancy. However, some studies have suggested that Azo may increase the risk of birth defects. Therefore, it is important to speak with your healthcare provider before taking this medication if you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant.
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When Should I See My Doctor
If you have any symptoms associated with a UTI or a pre-existing health condition, dont delay visiting your doctor for treatment.
UTIs can be more dangerous if youre pregnant, due to an increased risk of kidney involvement. See your doctor if you are pregnant and you think you have a UTI, even if your symptoms are mild.
Children with UTI symptoms should see a doctor, to check for a more serious underlying condition.
Bladder infections may spread to your kidneys . This is a serious infection and needs immediate treatment with antibiotics. Signs and symptoms of kidney infection include fever, back pain, diarrhoea and vomiting. If you have these symptoms, it is important to see your doctor.
Treatment For More Severe Utis
Kids with a more severe infection may need treatment in a hospital so they can get antibiotics by injection or IV .
This might happen if:
- the child has high fever or looks very ill, or a kidney infection is likely
- the child is younger than 6 months old
- bacteria from the infected urinary tract may have spread to the blood
- the child is dehydrated or is vomiting and cannot take any fluids or medicine by mouth
Kids with VUR will be watched closely by the doctor. VUR might be treated with medicines or, less commonly, surgery. Most kids outgrow mild forms of VUR, but some can develop kidney damage or kidney failure later in life.
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What Are Uti Symptoms
Symptoms of UTIs may include the following: pain or burning when urinating, pressure in the low belly, an urge to urinate often, and fatigue and shakiness. If you have severe pain in your back or lower abdomen, vomiting, nausea, or fever, see your healthcare provider immediately. These can be signs of a serious kidney infection. Speak with your healthcare provider if you think you may have a UTI.
- Urinary Tract Infection, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention . Web. 20 September 2021.
- Bladder Infection in Adults, National Institute of Health . Web. 20 September 2021.
- Urinary Tract Infections, MedlinePlus. Web. 20 September 2021.
- Urinary Tract Infections, Mayo Clinic. Web. 20 September 2021.
- Phenazopyridine, MedlinePlus. Web. 21 September 2021.
What Can I Take To Relieve Pain
Phenazopyridine hydrochloride may relieve your pain, burning, itching, and urgency to urinate within 20 minutes. Avoid taking it if you have kidney disease or are allergic to dyes. Do not worry if your urine turns reddish-orange when you take this medication. This common effect is not harmful, but it can stain clothing.
Methenamine and sodium salicylate work together to slow bacterial growth along the urinary tract and to control the UTI. Do not take this medication if you are allergic to aspirin, are on a low-sodium diet or anticoagulant therapy, or have stomach problems.
You can also take other pain relievers, such as NSAIDs or acetaminophen .
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How Are Utis Treated
If your doctor prescribes antibiotics to treat your bacterial infection, remember to take the full course even if you are feeling better.
Urinary alkalinisers can help relieve discomfort when passing urine, and improve symptoms such as stinging. You can make your own by mixing one teaspoon of baking soda or bicarbonate of soda in water, or ask your pharmacist if you prefer to buy one ready made. Please check with your doctor or pharmacist if you can use them together with other medicines you take.
What Are Utis
A urinary tract infection is an infection in any part of the urinary system. The urinary system is made up of 2 kidneys and two tubes called ureters, which join the kidneys to the bladder. The urinary system filters your blood to eliminate waste and excess fluid from your body . Urine goes through the kidneys along the ureters and into the bladder. Urine is stored in the bladder until you get the urge to go to the toilet . Urine leaves the body through a tube called the urethra.
Infection most commonly occurs in the bladder but can also occur in the urethra , the kidneys , or a combination of these. If untreated, UTIs can lead to kidney infection which can be very serious, so its important to visit your doctor for early management.
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What Is A Uti
A urinary tract infection occurs when bacteria enter the urethra and infect the urinary tract. There are many different parts of the urinary tract that can become infected, and the most common type of UTI is a bladder infection. UTIs may cause discomfort, pain, and burning sensations. They can typically be treated with antibiotics.
People of any sex or age can get a UTI, but it is much more common for women to get UTIs. You are also more likely to get a UTI if you are sexually active, pregnant, or if you have had a UTI before. Symptoms such as pain or burning when urinating, pressure in the low belly, an urge to urinate often, and fatigue and shakiness can all be signs of a UTI. Speak with your healthcare provider if you think you may have a UTI.
Practice Healthy Hygiene Habits
Preventing UTIs starts with practicing a few good bathroom and hygiene habits.
First, its important not to hold your urine for too long. This can lead to a buildup of bacteria, resulting in infection.
Peeing after sexual intercourse can also 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 using the toilet especially if you have a female urethra make sure you wipe front to back. Wiping from back to front can to the urinary tract and is associated with an increased risk of UTIs.
Benefits of healthy hygiene for UTI
Urinating frequently and after sexual intercourse can reduce the risk of UTI. Careful wiping when you use the toilet may also help decrease the risk of UTI.
Several natural supplements may decrease the risk of developing a UTI.
Here are a few supplements that have been studied and are all available in capsule form:
- D-Mannose.D-Mannose is a type of sugar that is found in cranberries. Research suggests its effective in treating UTIs and preventing recurrence.
- Cranberry extract. Like cranberry juice, cranberry extract works by preventing bacteria from adhering to the urinary tract.
- Garlic extract. shows garlic and garlic extract to have antimicrobial properties, so they it may be able to block the growth of bacteria to prevent UTIs.
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Key Points About Urinary Tract Infections
- Urinary tract infections are a common health problem that affects millions of people each year. These infections can affect any part of the urinary tract.
- Most UTIs are caused by E. coli bacteria, which normally live in the colon.
- The most common symptoms of UTIs include changes in urination such as frequency, pain, or burning urine looks dark, cloudy, or red and smells bad back or side pain nausea/vomiting and fever.
- Antibiotics are used to treat UTIs. Other treatments may include pain relievers, and drinking plenty of water to help wash bacteria out of the urinary tract.
- Other things that can be done may help reduce the likelihood of developing UTIs.
Does Walgreens Sell Over
At Walgreens, you can find options for detecting urinary tract infections and for easing symptoms. UTI test strips can help you detect infections, while urinary pain relief tablets and cranberry pills may help to relieve UTI discomfort or prevent recurring UTIs. Researchers are still looking into the possible benefits of cranberry in fighting infections, but their findings are inconclusive. To learn more about the over-the-counter options available for treating UTI symptoms, talk to your healthcare provider or pharmacist.
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Things You Can Do Yourself
To help ease symptoms of a urinary tract infection :
- 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
- avoid having sex
Some people take cystitis sachets or cranberry drinks and products every day to prevent UTIs from happening, which may help. But there’s no evidence they help ease symptoms or treat a UTI if the infection has already started.
Why Are Females At A Higher Risk For Utis
People with female reproductive organs are at a higher risk for UTIs because of their anatomy. The female urethra, the tube which empties urine from your bladder out of your body, is shorter than someone born with male anatomy.
The female urethra is also quite close to female reproductive organs. That means bacteria from sexual intercourse as well as products like spermicide can be in close contact with the urethra and bladder.
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