Urinary tract infection is the colonization of microorganisms in the urinary tract is in an amount that can cause damages to the affected organs. It can also be described as the term used in describing the presence of bacteria in the urine. This infection may be asymptomatic or symptomatic, chronic or acute, community acquired or hospital acquired, de novo or recurrent, complicated or uncomplicated. A urinary tract infection is called an upper urinary tract infection when the ureters and kidneys are infected and lower when the urethra and bladder is affected. Its spread is either by direct extension from adjacent organs passing through the lymphatic system, or through an upward route from the fecal reservoir.
If not properly treated, UTI can cause more harm which includes kidney infections and bladder symptoms. Its symptoms and infections can be quite unbearable. If while urinating, you feel burning or sharp stabbing pain, you are likely to have a bladder infection. Any bacteria that grows in the urethra causes bladder infection. Below is a list of some of the various forms of UTI symptoms.
Symptoms of Lower UTI:
- Itches while urinating.
- Pains around the bladder region.
- Urge to urinate always irrespective of the fact that you may have little urine in the bladder.
- Need to always urinate during night hours.
- Mild fever.
- Cloudy urine with a bad smell.
- In some cases there may be blood in the urine.
Symptoms of Upper UTI:
- Nausea and vomiting.
- Pain in the sides of the back and sides of the stomach, usually at the sides of the kidneys and downwards towards the bladder region.
- Pressure in the stomach region.
- High fever.
- Strong fatigue.
Risk Factors Of Urinary Tract Infections
If not properly treated or treated in time, a person infected with UTI is prone to the following risk factors which are categorized into three:
- Risk Factors Specific to Women
- Risk Factors Specific to Men
- General Risk Factors
Risk Factors Specific to Women
Medical practitioners have opined that women in their child bearing age are more prone to this illness than those in any other category. The urethra is known to be one of the major causes of this disease in them. This is owing to the fact that most often, their fecal matter invades their urethra area thereby transferring bacteria from the fecal waste to the urethra opening. Other risk factors in women include the following: The use of antibiotics during the course of a pregnancy, some experience it after menopause, and by using certain types of contraceptives.
Risk Factors Specific to Men
Men above the age of fifty usually have an increased chance of contacting this infection. Usually when a man starts experiencing complications with their prostate, they are likely to experience these types of infections. This is especially true if the prostate becomes enlarged for various reasons. While women experience these infections more frequently than men, men are not likely to be hospitalized once they are infected.
Risk Factors Common to Both Sex
Some risk factors are common to both men and women some of which are listed below:
When either a man or woman suffers from complications associated with the immune system, he/she is liable to urinary tract infection.
Some medical conditions also contribute to this infection such as: diabetes, anemia, kidney issues, HIV, AIDS, pelvic inflammatory disease, and even issues with the bladder such as neurogenic bladder.
How To Treat Urinary Tract Infection (UTI)
Drink Plenty Water
Try increasing the amount of water you drink once you’ve contacted UTI as the urine is made of waste products and acids from your body. Also avoid taking caffeinated drinks like tea, coffee or soda as these can irritate your bladder more.
Drink Cranberry Juice
Cranberry juice has been traditionally used to help prevent and cure urinary tract infections. It is was believed that cranberry juice might be effective against UTIs because it made the urine more acidic, creating a hostile environment for bacteria.
Holding your urine back can also increase the risk of bacteria growth. Research has it that consistent urinating especially after sex is one of the best remedies of UTI. This is because during sex, the bacteria are pushed deeper into the urethra which is flushed out upon urinating.
In some severe cases, the use of antibiotics is highly recommended. The length of treatment may vary, pending the type of drug used and the type of UTI.
If anti-inflammatory medications don’t work for you, try using a heating pad. Avoid burning yourself by placing the hot pad on a towel, then center the heat over your bladder.
Put on Loose Cloth
Put on loose clothes, as these will promote air circulation thereby reducing the chances of bacteria growth.
Preventing Uti From Re Occuring
If you experience UTI frequently, the following tips will help guide you on how to prevent reoccurrences:
- Empty your bladder as soon as you feel the need to.
- For the ladies make sure you wipe your bladder from front to back after use.
- Drink lots of water.
- Use the shower instead of baths.
- Stay away from feminine hygiene as they increase irritation.
- Endeavor to cleanse your genital area before sex.
- Urinate after sex to flush away any bacteria that may have entered your urethra.
- Keep your genital area dry always by wearing cotton underwear and loose-fitting clothes.