Tuesday, September 27, 2022

What To Do When You Have A Urinary Tract Infection

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A Note About Cranberry Juice And Utis

How do I know if I have a urinary tract infection?

Cranberry juice or cranberry extract in supplemental form has long been used as a home remedy for UTIs.

The thought is that the proanthocyanidins in cranberries may help prevent bladder infections by keeping the bacteria from clinging to the bladder wall, says Sonya Angelone, MS, RDN, a nutrition consultant based in San Francisco, and spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

Yet theres scientific controversy over how effective cranberry juice is at preventing UTIs due to conflicting conclusions in studies on the topic, according to an article published in May 2016 in Advances in Nutrition. Some studies have found it might work, while others have found no effect.

Bottom line, there is some evidence it may help, and it doesnt hurt to try it, says Angelone. Just be sure to chose unsweetened cranberry juice . Mix this with sparkling water or plain yogurt, she recommends.

Another low-calorie option choose a cranberry pill that contains d-mannose, she says.

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:

What Is The Outlook For Kidney Infections

With treatment, the outlook for kidney infections is very positive. It is vital that you take all of any prescribed medications for the infection. You may begin feeling better shortly after beginning a treatment, but still need to take the entire prescribed treatment.

Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 05/22/2019.

References

  • National Kidney Foundation. Urinary Tract Infections Accessed 5/23/19.
  • National Institute of Diabetes, Digestive and Kidney Diseases . Pyelonephritis: Kidney Infection Accessed 5/23/19.

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How Are Recurrent Utis Treated

Treatment for recurrent UTIs depends on whats causing them. Sometimes the answer is as simple as teaching a child to empty their bladder as soon as they have the urge to go.

If a condition like VUR is causing the infections, the solution is a bit more complicated. Kids with VUR must be watched closely, because it can lead to kidney infection and kidney damage. Most kids outgrow the condition. Some might need surgery to correct the reflux.

Some kids with VUR benefit from daily treatment with a small amount of antibiotics, which can also make surgery unnecessary. Kids with VUR should see a pediatric urologist, who can decide if antibiotic treatment is the best option.

In some cases, surgery is needed to correct VUR. The most common procedure is ureteral reimplantation, in which one or both of the ureters are repositioned to correct the backflow of urine from the bladder. This procedure requires only a small incision and, in some children, can be done using robotic-assisted laparoscopy. When surgery is necessary, the success rate is high, but not everyone is a good candidate for it.

Kids may be candidates for ureteral reimplantation if they:

  • have an intolerance to antibiotics
  • get recurrent infections while on antibiotic treatment
  • have severe, or high-grade, reflux
  • are older kids and teens with reflux

Eating Diet & Nutrition

Urinary Tract Infections / Emed Primary Care Clinic Jacksonville

Experts dont think eating, diet, and nutrition play a role in preventing or treating bladder infections. If you have any type of UTI, talk with a health care professional about how much to drink each day to help prevent or relieve your infection.

The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases and other components of the National Institutes of Health conduct and support research into many diseases and conditions.

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Other Ways To Prevent Recurring Utis

If you have more than 3 UTIs in 1 year, or 2 UTIs in 6 months, there are other things that may help prevent UTIs.

There is some evidence that women under 65 years old who keep getting UTIs may find it helpful to take:

  • a supplement called D-mannose this is not recommended for pregnant women
  • cranberry products, such as juice or tablets

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.

Page last reviewed: 18 November 2020 Next review due: 18 November 2023

Over The Counter Medications For Urinary Tract Infections

  • Brand names listed as examples do not imply better quality over other brands. Generic equivalents may also exist.
  • Use only as directed on the package, unless your healthcare provider instructs you to do otherwise.
  • OTCs may interact with other medications or be potentially harmful if you have certain medical conditions. Talk to your pharmacist about options that are right for you.

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Soothe Your Infection With Ginger Tea

  • Add 2 tablespoons of fresh crushed ginger to boiling water.
  • Let it simmer for 5 to 10 minutes.
  • Strain it and drink 2 to 3 cups a day. Add honey for a better taste.

Ginger has antimicrobial properties that work against a variety of bacterial strains.20

While chewing on a piece of ginger will also have positive effects, its best to consume it as a tea to treat your UTI. The more liquid you drink, the faster you flush out UTI bacteria.

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Prevention Of Urinary Tract Infection

How do you know you have a bladder infection? | Urinary Tract Infection Symptoms

There are several steps you can take to reduce your risk of getting a UTI:

  • Drink plenty of water and other liquids to help flush out bacteria.
  • Urinate frequently, or about every two to three hours.
  • For women: Wipe from front to back after urinating or having a bowel movement.
  • Urinate before and soon after having sexual intercourse.
  • Avoid synthetic underwear, tight pants, and lingering in wet gym clothes or a bathing suit. Though none of this can cause a UTI, these habits can increase the spread of bacteria.
  • Avoid vaginal deodorants, douches, powders, and other potentially irritating feminine products.
  • Use a method of birth control other than a diaphragm, spermicide, or unlubricated condoms.

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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.

Does Cranberry Juice Prevent A Uti

Some patients may want to use cranberry or cranberry juice as a home remedy to treat a UTI. Cranberry juice has not been shown to cure an ongoing bacterial infection in the bladder or kidney.

Cranberry has been studied as a preventive maintenance agent for UTIs. Studies are mixed on whether cranberry can really prevent a UTI. Cranberry may work by preventing bacteria from sticking to the inside of the bladder however, it would take a large amount of cranberry juice to prevent bacterial adhesion. More recent research suggests cranberries may have no effect on preventing a UTI

  • According to one expert, the active ingredient in cranberries A-type proanthocyanidins are effective against UTI-causing bacteria, but is only in highly concentrated cranberry capsules, not in cranberry juice.
  • However, cranberry was not proven to prevent recurrent UTIs in several well-controlled studies, as seen in a 2012 meta-analysis of 24 trials published by the Cochrane group.
  • While studies are not conclusive, there is no harm in drinking cranberry juice. However, if you develop symptoms, see your doctor. Some people find large quantities of cranberry juice upsetting to the stomach.

Increasing fluid intake like water, avoiding use of spermicides, and urinating after intercourse may be helpful in preventing UTIs, although limited data is available.

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Urinary Tract Infection In Women

If youre a woman, theres a reasonable chance youve already experienced, or will at some point experience, a urinary tract infection . Roughly one in five women will deal with a UTI in her lifetime. If youve had it once, its also likely youll get it again. Find out more about UTIs in women here, and get tips on how to recognize an infection, and ease symptoms.

What To Do If You Have A Uti

Over The Counter Treatment for UTI Symptoms

DO drink lots of water. Drinking water is one of the best ways to help your body to get rid of your UTI. Keep hydrated with at least six to eight glasses of water a day to flush out the bacteria in your urethra.

DO take a cranberry supplement. Cranberry has been proven to help with UTIs. Either a cranberry supplement or cranberry juice is effective in curing and preventing UTIs. However, if you go with the juice, make sure you get the bottle marked 100% juice. Any added sugar can worsen your symptoms.

DO empty your bladder. If you have to pee, then pee. Even if it is only a small amount, every time you urinate bacteria is flushed out.

DO take probiotics. Beat the bad bacteria with good bacteria. Probiotics will help fight off the infection by getting rid of the bad bacteria and replacing it with your bodys natural, healthy bacteria. Yogurt is a natural source of probiotics, so its essential to eat it when dealing with a UTI.

DO see your physician. While natural home remedies can help, seeing a physician is the best way to deal with your UTI. Theyll be able to prescribe you with antibiotics to prevent the infection from spreading.

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Preventing Future Urinary Tract Infections

BATHING AND HYGIENE

To prevent future urinary tract infections, you should:

  • Choose sanitary pads instead of tampons, which some doctors believe make infections more likely. Change your pad each time you use the bathroom.
  • Do not douche or use feminine hygiene sprays or powders. As a general rule, do not use any product containing perfumes in the genital area.
  • Take showers instead of baths. Avoid bath oils.
  • Keep your genital area clean. Clean your genital and anal areas before and after sexual activity.
  • Urinate before and after sexual activity. Drinking 2 glasses of water after sexual activity may help promote urination.
  • Wipe from front to back after using the bathroom.
  • Avoid tight-fitting pants. Wear cotton-cloth underwear and pantyhose, and change both at least once a day.

DIET

The following improvements to your diet may prevent future urinary tract infections:

  • Drink plenty of fluids, 2 to 4 quarts each day.
  • Do not drink fluids that irritate the bladder, such as alcohol and caffeine.

RECURRING INFECTIONS

Some women have repeated bladder infections. Your provider may suggest that you:

  • Use vaginal estrogen cream if you have dryness caused by menopause.
  • Take a single dose of an antibiotic after sexual contact.
  • Take a cranberry supplement pill after sexual contact.
  • Have a 3-day course of antibiotics at home to use if you develop an infection.
  • Take a single, daily dose of an antibiotic to prevent infections.

What Are The Symptoms Of A Uti

If you have a UTI, you may have some or all of these symptoms:6,7

  • Pain or burning when urinating
  • An urge to urinate often, but not much comes out when you go
  • Pressure in your lower abdomen
  • Urine that smells bad or looks milky or cloudy
  • Blood in the urine. This is more common in younger women. If you see blood in your urine, tell a doctor or nurse right away.
  • Feeling tired, shaky, confused, or weak. This is more common in older women.
  • Having a fever, which may mean the infection has reached your kidneys

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What Are Urinary Tract Infections In Cats

Urinary tract infections occur when bacteria enter the urethra and bladder and multiply. This presence of bacteria may result in an infection if the bodys defenses dont clear it quickly. Since the urine and bladder are normally sterile, the presence of bacteria there is abnormal. There are other urinary issues that are much more common in cats that cause similar clinical signs, so it is important to always have your cat checked out by their veterinarian if urinary issues are seen.

Favorite Sites To Find Docs

The FYI on UTIs: All you need to know to treat and prevent urinary tract infections | GMA Digital

SWIU is all about supporting women urologists and the urologic issues that impact women. One of our favorite SWIU perks is their searchable database for prospective patients to find a local female urologist.

An excellent source for overall urinary health info, UCF also offers a tool to help would-be patients find a urologist near them. You can search by zip code, distance, and through eight urinary specialties, including pediatric urology.

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Southern Cross Medical Library

The purpose of the Southern Cross Medical Library is to provide information of a general nature to help you better understand certain medical conditions. Always seek specific medical advice for treatment appropriate to you. This information is not intended to relate specifically to insurance or healthcare services provided by Southern Cross. For more articles go to the Medical Library index page.

Home Remedies To Relieve Utis

If you do find yourself with a Urinary Tract Infection, there are several home remedies you can try before resorting to an over the counter or prescription drug.

  • Increase Your Water Intake. An increase in fluids can help flush out the urinary tract and put you on the road to recovery. Just make sure you’re drinking water and avoid any sugary or caffeinated drinks.

  • Empty Your Bladder Frequently. Emptying your bladder helps you get rid of the bacteria that’s causing the infection. Be sure to go whenever you feel the urge – dont hold it in!

  • Take Some Vitamin C. Eat plenty of foods rich in Vitamin C, or take a supplement to make your urine more acidic. This helps prevent the growth of bacteria in your urine.

  • Watch What You Eat. Avoiding bladder irritants can help make it easier for your body to fight off infections within the urinary tract. Steer clear of spicy foods, acidic foods, carbonated drinks, or sugary sweets.

  • Use Heat To Relieve Pain. Urinary Tract Infections can be painful. Use a heating pad on the stomach or pubic area to relieve discomfort, or take a warm bath.

  • Baking Soda. This household staple can help neutralize the acidity in your urine, helping you to heal from the infection. Add a teaspoon of baking soda to a glass of water and drink up.

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Home Remedies For Urinary Tract Infection Symptoms

In addition to antibiotics, many people seek natural, at-home remedies to help UTIs. A heating pad can relieve pressure and pain, and wearing loose cotton clothing is recommended. For those with recurrent UTIs, modifying certain habits may help: Choose fragrance-free personal care products to reduce the risk of irritation, and cut back on foods that can irritate the bladder caffeine, alcohol, spicy food, raw onions, citrus fruits, carbonated drinks, and artificial sweeteners.

How Are Kidney Infections Treated

Saving Our Sons: UTI Resource Page

A physician will treat the disease based on his or her examination. He or she may start the patient on the standard treatment of a course of antibiotics before the lab tests results are available. The medication may change once the exact strain of bacteria is revealed by the lab tests.

If the treatment is effective, the patient should feel better in two to three days. If not, your healthcare provider will start looking for additional problems. Most antibiotic treatments last for 14 days and it is essential that patients take the pills as recommended for the full 14 days even though symptoms may disappear after a few days. The disappearance of symptoms does not mean all bacteria are killed. Some may remain and the infection may reappear.

There is also a concern that those bacteria that remain may develop resistance to the medication. For some reason the disease is more difficult to treat in men and they may have to take medication for up to six weeks. Patients with severe illness, those that have significant nausea and vomiting, high fevers, significant pain and signs of dehydration may be hospitalized for a few days while the antibiotics are administered intravenously. Urine samples are taken after about six weeks of treatment and examined to insure the bacterial infection is eradicated.

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Cut Bladder Irritants From Your Diet

When you have a UTI, caffeine, alcohol, spicy food, nicotine, carbonated drinks, and artificial sweeteners can irritate your bladder further, making it harder for your body to heal, according to the Cleveland Clinic. Focus on healthy foods, such as high-fiber carbohydrates , that are good for your digestive health, says Holly Lucille, ND, RN, a naturopathic doctor in private practice in West Hollywood, California, and the author of Creating and Maintaining Balance: A Womans Guide to Safe, Natural Hormone Health.

Things You Can Do Yourself

To help ease pain:

  • 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, especially during hot weather

Itâs important to follow the instructions on the packet so you know how much paracetamol you or your child can take, and how often.

It may also help to avoid having sex until you feel better.

You cannot pass a UTI on to your partner, but sex may be uncomfortable.

Taking cystitis sachets or cranberry products has not been shown to help ease symptoms of UTIs.

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