Why Do Women Get Utis More Often Than Men
The main reason that urinary tract infections are more common in women is their anatomy. A womans urethra is much shorter than a mans, making it much easier for E. coli and other bacteria to reach the bladder in women. In other words, bacteria dont have to travel as far to reach in the bladder in women.
Furthermore, a womans urethra is much closer to the anus. This makes it much easier for bacteria to travel from the anus to the urethra from something like toilet splash back or wiping improperly.
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.
What Are Other Possible Causes Of Painful Urination
A painful burning feeling when you urinate is often a sign of a urinary tract infection . However, painful urination can occur even if you dont have an infection. Certain drugs, like some used in cancer chemotherapy, may inflame the bladder. Something pressing against the bladder or a kidney stone stuck near the entrance to the bladder can also cause painful urination.
Painful urination can also be caused by vaginal infection or irritation. You might be sensitive to chemicals in products such as douches, vaginal lubricants, soaps, scented toilet paper, or contraceptive foams or sponges. If it hurts to urinate after youve used these products, youre probably sensitive to them.
Also Check: Urinary Tract Infection Over The Counter Pills
Urinary Tract Infection Treatment
If you are a healthy adult man or a woman who is not pregnant, a few days of antibiotic pills will usually cure your urinary tract infection. If you are pregnant, your doctor will prescribe a medicine that is safe for you and the baby. Usually, symptoms of the infection go away 1 to 2 days after you start taking the medicine. Its important that you follow your doctors instructions for taking the medicine, even if you start to feel better. Skipping pills could make the treatment less effective.
Your doctor may also suggest a medicine to numb your urinary tract and make you feel better while the antibiotic starts to work. The medicine makes your urine turn bright orange, so dont be alarmed by the color when you urinate.
How Are Utis Diagnosed
Only a health care provider can treat urinary tract infections. The first thing a doctor will do is confirm that a person has a UTI by taking a clean-catch urine specimen. At the doctor’s office, you’ll be asked to clean your genital area with disposable wipes and then pee into a sterile cup.
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.
Read Also: Urinary Tract Infection In Children
How Urinary Tract Infections Are Treated In Men
Whether an infection affects a man or a woman, the treatment is the same: a round of antibiotics to kill the bacteria and get rid of UTI symptoms. For an uncomplicated infection, a woman typically needs to take an antibiotic for one to three days. For men, a longer course of at least seven days of antibiotics is required, says Trost.
What Is The Outlook
The vast majority of men improve within a few days of starting treatment. See a doctor if you do not quickly improve. If your symptoms do not improve despite taking an antibiotic medicine then you may need an alternative antibiotic. This is because some germs are resistant to some types of antibiotics. This can be identified from tests done on your urine sample.
Occasionally the infection may spread and cause you to be more unwell. Infection in the bladder may spread to the kidney . Infection may also spread to involve the prostate gland, causing infection of the prostate gland . Occasionally it may lead to a swelling caused by a collection of pus in the prostate gland.
You May Like: Clearing Urinary Tract Infection Naturally
When Should I Call My Healthcare Provider
- Back pain.
If you have any of these symptoms, or your other symptoms continue after treatment, call your healthcare provider. A UTI can spread throughout your urinary tract and into other parts of your body. However, treatment is very effective and can quickly relieve your symptoms.
Why Are Women And Older Adults More At Risk
E. coli or other bacteria cause UTIs, which are infections in your kidneys, bladder, ureters or urethra. Unfortunately, women are more likely to get them mainly because of their anatomy.
A womans urethra is shorter than a mans and closer to the anus. The urethra is also close to the vagina, which can collect bacteria during sex. So bacteria from both the anus and vagina have easy access to a womans urinary tract.
Post-menopausal women are also at higher risk because pH changes in the vagina make it more susceptible to infection.
Both men and women are more likely to get UTIs as they age. Certain medical conditions, such as bladder prolapse in women and enlarged prostate in men, cause incomplete bladder emptying in older adults. Urine that stays in your bladder too long can encourage bacteria to grow.
Some newer diabetic drugs can also promote sugar in the urine and create conditions ideal for a UTI, Dr. Vasavada adds.
Don’t Miss: How Does Someone Get A Urinary Tract Infection
Children Can Get Utis
Five-year-old Samantha had been wetting the bed and waking up to use the bathroom multiple times per night. Then, she developed a fever. After she was unable to attend her first day of kindergarten, Samantha’s parents brought her to the pediatrician’s office, where she was diagnosed with a UTI.
UTIs are difficult to diagnose in children, so health professionals almost always collect and test a urine sample. It is common for children to have bladder and bowel dysfunction, such as difficulty urinating and passing stools, which are risk factors for recurrent UTIs. Children with a UTI can develop scarring on the kidney, which can lead to later urological issues.
Diagnosis For A Uti Is Necessary
A proper diagnosis of the urinary tract infection is necessary to get the right effective treatment. Your urologist will prescribe you some antibiotics depending upon the results of the diagnostics. Also, never choose self-medication go and consult a doctor. Self-medication might provide you only symptomatic temporary relief.
The risk of side-effects or allergies is also quite high in self-medication. So, only use the antibiotics prescribed by your doctor and follow healthy practices that will keep you safe and away from catching a urinary tract infection.
Also Check: Constipation And Urinary Tract Infection
Usually A Man With Uti Faces The Following Common Symptoms:
- Pain and burning sensation while passing urine
- Sudden and frequent urges to pass the urine
- Dark brown urine due to the presence of blood
If the urinary infection becomes severe and reaches the kidneys or to the prostate gland, the person can face the below-mentioned symptoms as well.
- Constant fatigue
These are the severe symptoms of urinary tract infections.
How Men Can Prevent Utis
There are things men can do to reduce the chance of getting a UTI. These include:
- Dont hold urine for too long. Bacteria grow in it.
- Drink water to flush your kidneys.
- Practice good hygiene.
- Urinate after sex to flush bacteria from the urethra.
- If you have diabetes, control your blood sugar. High blood sugar can spill into the urine and bacteria thrive on it.
You May Like: How To Prevent Urinary Tract Infections In The Elderly
Diagnosing And Treating Utis
UTIs can be diagnosed by your primary care doctoryou dont have to see a specialist initially. To diagnose a UTI, your doctor will send a sample of your urine to a lab for a urine culture where the urine is processed and evaluated for bacteria. The culture also can tell us what bug you have and what antibiotics can be used to help treat the infection. A urine analysis, which can be done quickly in our office, can suggest an infection, however, the best test is an actual culture.
Most UTIs are treated with oral antibiotics. However, there are superbugs that may be resistant to what we can give you by mouth, and those would require using stronger antibiotics through an IV. Most treatments last 5 to 7 days, but can be longer.
A quick internet search will give you home remedies for treating a UTI, but I dont recommend this. Untreated infections can spread to the rest of your body and put your life at risk.
Questions To Ask Your Doctor
- Do I need any tests, such as urinalysis?
- What is the likely cause of my urinary tract infection ?
- Do I need medicine? How should I take it?
- What are the possible side effects of the medicine?
- When should I expect relief from my symptoms?
- What symptoms would indicate that my infection is getting worse? What should I do if I experience these symptoms?
- I get UTIs a lot. What can I do to prevent them?
- Do I need preventive antibiotics? If so, should I be concerned about antibiotic resistance?
- My child gets UTIs a lot. Could an anatomical problem be causing his or her UTIs?
Read Also: Sore Throat And Urinary Tract Infection
How Are Urinary Tract Infections Diagnosed
Your doctor will use the following tests to diagnose a urinary tract infection:
- Urinalysis: This test will examine the urine for red blood cells, white blood cells and bacteria. The number of white and red blood cells found in your urine can actually indicate an infection.
- Urine culture: A urine culture is used to determine the type of bacteria in your urine. This is an important test because it helps determine the appropriate treatment.
If your infection does not respond to treatment or if you keep getting infections over and over again, your doctor may use the following tests to examine your urinary tract for disease or injury:
- Ultrasound: In this test, sound waves create an image of the internal organs. This test is done on top of your skin, is painless and doesnt typically need any preparation.
- Cystoscopy: This test uses a special instrument fitted with a lens and a light source to see inside the bladder from the urethra.
- CT scan: Another imaging test, a CT scan is a type of X-ray that takes cross sections of the body . This test is much more precise than typical X-rays.
How Do Women Get Utis
Women have a more than 50% chance of getting a UTI at some point. This is much more likely than men.
In women, the urethra is shorter than mens and is closer to the anus, where stool comes out. Its also close to the vagina, which can collect bacteria during sex, Dr. Bajic says. Because of this positioning bacteria from the anus or vagina have easy access to a womans urinary tract making it easier for an infection to occur.
He also says women who have undergone menopause may have hormone-related changes to their vagina which can predispose them to infections. But this is treatable with prescription creams.
Women at higher risk include those who:
- Are pregnant .
- Are post-menopausal .
- Have pelvic organ prolapse, which makes it harder to empty the bladder.
- Use certain forms of birth control, such as diaphragms or spermicide.
- Are diabetic.
Also Check: Urinary Urgency Treatment Home Remedies
Acute And Chronic Prostatitis
In the 1800s, prostatitis was thought to be secondary to excessive alcohol consumption or physical or sexual activity. It was often associated with gonorrhea and could be fatal or lead to abscess formation. By the 1920s, most cases were attributed to microorganisms, and antibiotics combined with prostate massage were standard therapy after World War II. Although the role of bacteria was questioned in the 1950s, it was reemphasized in 1968 when Meares and Stamey described their “4-glass test.”
Acute prostatitis is caused by an acute infection of the entire prostate gland, resulting in fever and localized pain. Microscopically, neutrophilic infiltrates, diffuse edema, and microabscesses may be seen, which may coalesce into larger collections.
Chronic prostatitis may be caused by inflammatory or noninflammatory diseases. This condition may arise via dysfunctional voiding, intraprostatic reflux, chronic exposure to microorganisms, autoimmune mechanisms, irritative urinary metabolites, and as a variant of neuropathic pain. Chronic bacterial prostatitis often produces few or no symptoms related to the prostate, but it is probably the most common cause of relapsing UTI in men.
Chronic prostatitis has been subdivided by the National Institutes of Health into the following categories:
What Are The Symptoms Of Uti In Males
Doctors classify UTIs into two types depending on the location:
- Upper UTI: Infection of the urethra, bladder, or ureter
- Lower UTI: infection of the kidney
Upper UTI symptoms may include:
- Pain in the loins
Lower UTI symptoms may include:
- Pain and burning when passing urine
- Increased frequency of passing urine
- Pain in the lower abdomen
- Cloudy, bloody or smelly urine
Some men may not have any symptoms at all. Older men may develop confusion or a general feeling of being unwell.
Read Also: What Causes Urinary Urgency And Frequency
How To Help Your Loved One Avoid Utis
We dont have enough research to support their effectiveness in UTI prevention, although their medical benefits cant be ruled out completely, says Dr. Goldman.
Instead, he recommends these tried-and-true prevention strategies:
- Encourage sufficient fluid intake
- Promote genital and urinary hygiene
- Ask the doctor about low-dose vaginal cream for postmenopausal women
Dr. Goldman says researchers are also studying D-Mannose for UTI prevention. The supplement, which has few side effects, sticks to bladder receptors that normally attract the E. coli bacteria usually responsible for UTIs.
Researchers also believe D-Mannose may keep bad bacteria from colonizing the digestive tract, which can harbor the bacteria responsible for UTIs in women.
Following these tips should help your aging relative stay healthy, productive and out of the hospital.
What Causes A Urinary Tract Infection
Urinary tract infections are caused by microorganisms usually bacteria that enter the urethra and bladder, causing inflammation and infection. Though a UTI most commonly happens in the urethra and bladder, bacteria can also travel up the ureters and infect your kidneys.
More than 90% of bladder infection cases are caused by E. coli, a bacterium normally found in the intestines.
Also Check: What Can Cause Urinary Retention
Symptoms Of Urinary Tract Infection
Intense burning and pain while urination is the main symptoms of urinary tract infection. Symptoms of urinary tract infection and kidney stones are almost the same. The color of urine becomes cloudy and urine frequency increases. The patient also has mild to moderate fever in case of UTIs.
- Burning urination or burning micturition
- High Fever with chills and rigors
- Pain while urinating
- Pain in the lower abdomen, flank, and back
- Frequent urination
- Using someone elses or undergarments
How Is A Uti Diagnosed
To find out whether you have a UTI, your doctor or nurse will test a clean sample of your urine. This means you will first wipe your genital area with a special wipe. Then you will collect your urine in midstream in a cup. Your doctor or nurse may then test your urine for bacteria to see whether you have a UTI, which can take a few days.
If you have had a UTI before, your doctor may order more tests to rule out other problems. These tests may include:
- A cystogram. This is a special type of x-ray of your urinary tract. These x-rays can show any problems, including swelling or kidney stones.
- A cystoscopic exam. The cystoscope is a small tube the doctor puts into the urethra to see inside of the urethra and bladder for any problems.
Read Also: Why Do I Have Urinary Incontinence
You Eat A Lot Of Sugar
Bacteria that cause UTIs love feeding on sugar, so you run the risk of providing a feast for them whenever your sweet tooth strikes. Kalas V, et al. Structure-based discovery of glycomimetic FmlH ligands as inhibitors of bacterial adhesion during urinary tract infection. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1720140115
If you eat tons of added sugars and get a real surge in your blood sugar, you may end up with some of that sugar in your urine, says Mary Jane Minkin, MD, a clinical professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the Yale School of Medicine.
Some foods and beverages, like coffee, booze, and chocolate, can also irritate your delicate urinary tract and exacerbate an existing UTI.
What Causes Utis
Its pretty easy to get a urinary tract infection. Bacteria that live in the vagina, genital, and anal areas may enter the urethra, travel to the bladder, and cause an infection. This can happen during sexual activity when bacteria from your partners genitals, anus, fingers, or sex toys gets pushed into your urethra. UTIs can also be caused by chlamydia, gonorrhea, or other organisms.
Although UTIs arent spread from one person to another like STDs, having sex can lead to or worsen UTIs. But you dont have to have sex to get a UTI. Anything that brings bacteria in contact with your urethra can cause a UTI.
Youre more likely to get a UTI if you
have had one before
have kidney stones or other obstructions in your urinary tract
Most people arent able to pinpoint the exact cause of their UTI because so many things can lead to it.
You May Like: Urinary Tract Infection Men Home Treatment