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A lot of people get urinary tract infection (UTI) at some point in their lives. This type of infection can cause serious discomfort and lead to even more serious health problems, if left untreated.
Urinary Tract Infection or UTI is any kind of infection that affects any part of the urinary system. That system includes your:
Most infections happen in the lower urinary tract, which includes the bladder and the urethra.
Although UTI is relatively common and in most cases is not really serious, there is a great danger if the infection spreads to the upper portion of the urinary system, mainly the kidneys.
There are several causes of UTI. The urinary system can get infected when bacteria and germs from the outside somehow make their way into the body.
There are several ways that can happen.
The most common way for the urethra to get infected is when bacteria from the large intestines gets into the lower urinary tract.
Once the urethra is infected it can reach the bladder. If that is not treated immediately, then it can go up the upper urinary tract and infect the kidneys.
That is the main reason why doctors recommend that women should wipe from front to back when they use the bathroom. This can prevent bacteria in the anus from entering the urethra.
Women are more at risk because of their shorter urethras compared to men, meaning bacteria can easily reach the bladder.
Another common way to get UTI is through sex. Bacteria can enter the vagina and so reach the urinary tract during intercourse.
Genes can also play a part in getting UTI. The shape of the urinary tract can be a determining factor.
Also, women with diabetes have a higher risk of developing this infection. That’s because their condition means they have weaker immune systems leaving them more prone to infections.
There are several types of urinary tract infections. These types are based mainly on where they occur:
Cystitis is a condition where the urinary bladder is inflamed and infected. Most of the time, the inflammation is caused by an infection.
Sometimes the infection is not caused by external germs getting inside the bladder. The body has naturally occurring bacteria that can become imbalanced. When that happens it can infect the bladder and cause inflammation.
It’s worth noting that cystitis does not always come from infections. There are certain types of medication that can lead to bladder inflammation.
Pyelonephritis is a kidney infection. Because of the importance of the kidneys in normal body functions, this condition can be very serious and life-threatening.
Normally, the infection starts in the lower part of the urinary tract and it goes up until it reaches the kidneys.
Urethritis is inflammation of the urethra which is commonly caused by an infection. It causes pain while peeing. Affecting both females and males, this condition can happen to anyone at any age.
These are the common symptoms of UTI:
UTI is preventable. Here are some steps that you can take to prevent this condition:
Antibiotics are the most common forms of treatment for UTI. Your doctor will prescribe antibiotics to you if it is determined that you need them.
It is understandable if you are hesitant about taking antibiotics and if you prefer treatments that do not rely on those medications.
Here are some treatments that you can use for UTI to avoid taking antibiotics:
These are just some home remedies you can try for UTI.
It might be okay to treat UTI with home remedies when the condition is still mild, but when you feel that it’s not getting any better or if you’re not feeling any improvement, then it would be better to see a doctor.
Remember that the condition can be dangerous, especially once the kidneys are affected.
Learn more about urological health, here.
Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.
Cystitis – Symptoms and Causes https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/cystitis/symptoms-causes/syc-20371306 Accessed January 18, 2020
What is Kidney (Renal) Infection – Pyelonephritis? https://www.urologyhealth.org/urologic-conditions/kidney-(renal)-infection-pyelonephritis Accessed January 18, 2020
Urethritis https://www.health.harvard.edu/a_to_z/urethritis-a-to-z Accessed January 18, 2020
pH and Water https://www.usgs.gov/special-topic/water-science-school/science/ph-and-water?qt-science_center_objects=0#qt-science_center_objects Accessed January 18, 2020
Antibiotics https://medlineplus.gov/antibiotics.html Accessed January 18, 2020