We get into it: a UTI, even a urinary tract infection, is one of the most common bacterial infections that occur in the body. UTIs affect roughly 150 million people worldwide, so at one point in your life, chances are you'll experience it. When we say it, we talk about the constant need to urinate without relief, and the cloudy, smelly or blood-streaking urine that comes with it. In short: it sucks. Fortunately, the treatment method is relatively quick, plus there are precautions you can take to avoid them completely.
So we put all our UTI questions to Dr. Sherry A. Ross, women's health expert and author of She-ology and She-ology, Shequel (released February 2020). She reminded us that UTIs are super common and easily treated, and more importantly, nothing to be embarrassed about. This is what she had to say:
What causes a UTI?
While both men and women are at risk of getting UTI, Dr. admits Ross: “The female anatomy is a set of urinary tract infections. The bladder and its tube is called the urethra, sits directly along the vagina. Urine leaves the body through this very short tube. The opening of the urethra is a small hole above the entrance to the vagina. "
It is also more common in sexually active women because "During vaginal intercourse, bacteria from the vagina and rectum can easily find their way into the urethra and bladder causing a urinary tract infection." Dr. Ross adds; "Other causes of UTI include spermicides, frequent antibiotic use, anatomical problems, genetic risks and menopause."
"Sometimes it can be difficult to know if you have a UTI because the symptoms can be subtle and not typical," Dr. Ross. "If you think there is something down there, see your health care provider to rule out a potentially dangerous no harm to UTI. A urinalysis can easily make the right diagnosis." That said, some of the common symptoms are:
- Pain or burning when urinating
- Urgent to urinate often but only pass a very small amount of urine
- Lower abdominal pain
- The urine looks red, pink, cloudy and has a bad smell
- Pain in the lower back
- Fever and chills
- Nausea and vomiting
- Severe back pain along with fever, chills, nausea and vomiting are more common symptoms of kidney or upper urinary tract infections.
The best treatment for UTI
Dr. Ross confirms that there is only one real cure for a UTI and it is not cranberry juice. “A true UTI needs antibiotics to clear the bacteria that are responsible for the symptoms and infection. Until you have a prescription in hand from your healthcare provider, you can get AZO, which is a pain relief in urine. "
Thankfully, "When a UTI is treated with antibiotics, it can last for 3 to 7 days. If a UTI is left untreated, a UTI and its disruptive symptoms will last until it is probably treated with antibiotics." Says Dr. Ross.
What to avoid if you have a UTI or are prone to UTI
If you are prone to get UTI, there are many things you should (and should not do) to keep infections in the distance. One of the well known preventative methods is pee after sex. "Pissing after sex helps remove any bacteria that may have entered the urethra and bladder. When you lose, the unwanted bacteria help to leave the body and become less likely to multiply in the bladder and cause an infection." Some other preventative measures that Dr. Ross recommends are:
Drink water and pee frequently: “Stay hydrated! Drink plenty of water to help keep urine and any unwanted bacteria out of the body quickly. A general rule of thumb is to urinate every two to three hours or when you first feel the urge. Also, try not to hold the urine for long periods of time. "
Keep it clean: “The cleaner you and your partner's genitals are, the better. This also includes washing your hands (and nails) if you plan to have any contact with genitals. In addition, always remember to "dry to the back" to avoid bringing unwanted bacteria from the anus to the vaginal area. "
Be careful when you have sex: “Avoid excessive sage, spermicides and lubricants in the genital area. I would also recommend avoiding the use of diaphragm, vaginal fungus, diva cup and sex toys if you are prone to get UTI. "
Avoid scented products: “Avoid using feminine products that use perfumes and other irritating chemicals that cause disruptive bacteria. Don't duck! Wear underwear with a cotton scrap. "
UTI domestic myths
Cranberry juice: Dr. Ross warns: "Do not leave cranberry juice or tablets and vitamin C! Cranberry juice and tablets can be helpful in preventing UTI by making the urine more acidic and preventing harmful bacteria from sticking to the bladder. An acidic environment in the urine makes the bacterial build up more difficult and reduces your chance of getting a UTI. "
But "Some medical studies have conflicting evidence that shows cranberries are a reliable source of prevention. Cranberries and their useful properties are a means of prevention, not treatment. Cranberries are not a reliable treatment alternative for any of the symptoms associated with a UTI." So cranberry juice can be helpful in reducing the risk of a UTI, once you have a UTI, the drinking bottle after the bottle of cranberry disease will not increase the UTI infection disappears.
Vitamin C: Another good ingredient Dr. Ross believes you should consider prevention but not treatment is vitamin C. “Vitamin C should not be used to treat a UTI as it will not be effective to kill the bacteria responsible for the infection. Because it is a potent antioxidant, it suggests that it can protect against bacteria from building up in the bladder and increase your risk of a UTI. "
What to do when you have a UTI
So even though none of the above home remedies may not work to cure a UTI, Dr. Ross, “A hot pad or hot water bottle over the lower abdomen can help ease some of the problems from a UTI. Drinking plenty of water, avoiding coffee and alcohol also helps until you get the right treatment, explains Dr. Ross.
UTI Over -The-Counter Prevention Remedies
Some other useful preventive treatments without a disk counter Dr. Ross recommends include:
- "Uqora is an effective natural drink with vitamins C, B6, magnesium, calcium, potassium and D-Mannos, which helps flush bacteria from the bladder that puts you at risk for a UTI."
- If you are prone to get UTI, "you can take probiotics because it can improve the quality of the gut and then your kidney." Read all about all intestinal health diseases.
To learn more about your body, check out five things you need to know about your body.