What is a UTI?
A urinary tract infection (UTI) is an infection from microbes. Microbes are organisms that are too small to be seen. Most UTIs are caused by bacteria, but some are caused by fungi and in rare cases by viruses. UTIs are among the most common infections in humans.
A UTI can happen anywhere in your urinary tract. Your urinary tract is made up of your kidneys, ureters, bladder, and urethra. Most UTIs only involve the urethra and bladder, in the lower tract.Although upper tract UTIs are more rare than lower tract UTIs, they’re also usually more severe.
Symptoms of a UTI depend on what part of the urinary tract is infected.
Lower tract UTIs affect the urethra and bladder. Symptoms of a lower tract UTI include:
- burning during urination
- increased frequency of urination without passing much urine
- increased urgency of urination
- cloudy urine
- urine that has a strong odour
- pelvic pain in women
- rectal pain in men
Upper tract UTIs affect the kidneys. These can be life threatening if bacteria move from the infected kidney into the blood. This condition, is called Urosepsis and can lead gradually to a dangerous low blood pressure, shock, and death.
Symptoms of an upper tract UTI include:
- pain and tenderness in the upper back
Causes and risk factors of a UTI
UTI can be caused by bacteria, virus, etc which irritate the urinary tract.
Additionally, there are also many obvious causes which can increase the risk of a getting a UTI. These causes include:
- Urinary tract obstructions or blockages, such as an enlarged prostate, kidney stones, and certain forms of cancer.
- Kidney stones
- Age as older adults are more likely to have UTIs.
- Diabetes, especially if poorly controlled, which may make it more likely for you to get a UT
- a weakened immune system
Risk factors for men and women.
Although all the UTI risk factors for women can be applied on men, men having an enlarged prostate are more likely to get this disease than normal men.
On the other hand,women are at a higher risk to UTI , but this can be reduced by improving the bathroom hygiene. Studies have failed to show that wiping from back to front after going to the bathroom leads to UTIs in women, like previously believed.
The length and location of the urethra in women increases the likelihood of UTIs. As we know, many kinds of bacteria occur around the vagina and the anus. Additionally, the urethra in women is located very close to both which makes it at risk of many infections as well as the rest of the urinary tract.
Pressure on the female urinary tract during sexual intercourse can move bacteria from around the anus into the bladder. However, the body can usually get rid of these bacteria within 24 hours. Bowel bacteria may have properties that allow them to stick to the bladder.
Non-lubricated latex condoms may increase friction and irritate the skin of women during sexual intercourse. This may increase the risk of a UTI.
However, condoms are important for reducing the spread of STDs. To help prevent friction and skin irritation from condoms, be sure to use enough water-based lubricant, and use it often during intercourse.
Less Estrogen levels
After menopause, a decrease in your estrogen level changes the normal bacteria in your vagina. This can increase the risk of a UTI.
UTIs hit women more than men;however, we can find many tips to solve this issue.
To prevent UTIs, try these effective tips:
- Drink six to eight glasses of water a day.
- Don’t hold urine for long periods of time.
- Consult your doctor if you felt any problems related to urine or other difficulties in emptying your bladder.
- Consume cranberry supplements or use vaginal probiotics, like lactobacillus, may also help in the prevention of UTIs.
Before trying anything, make sure to discuss what the right prevention plan is for you.
UTIs during pregnancy
Women who are pregnant and have symptoms of a UTI should see their doctor right away. UTI during pregnancy can cause high blood pressure and premature delivery. UTIs during pregnancy are also more likely to spread to the kidneys.
Home Remedies For UTI
- Drink Plenty of Fluids
Regular urination can help flush bacteria from the urinary tract to prevent infection.To stay hydrated and meet your fluid needs, it’s best to drink water throughout the day and always when you’re thirsty. Drinking plenty of liquids can decrease the risk of UTIs by making you pee more, which helps remove bacteria from the urinary tract.
- Increase Vitamin C Intake
Some evidence shows that increasing your intake of vitamin C could protect against UTI. Fruits and vegetables are especially high in vitamin C and are a good way to increase your intake.
Consume good amounts of oranges, grapefruit and kiwi fruit to get the recommended amount of vitamin C.
- Drink Unsweetened Cranberry Juice
One of the most popular and effective home remedies to treat urinary tract infections is drinking unsweetened cranberry juice. Cranberries prevent the bacteria from adhering to the urinary tract, which in turn prevents the infection. This natural juice can also prevent the bacteria from adhering to the urinary tract, thus reducing the risk of urinary tract infections.
- Practice These Healthy Habits
Preventing urinary tract infections starts with practicing a few good bathroom and hygiene habits.
- To avoid any buildup of bacteria and infections and reduce the risk of urinary tract infections, don’t hold urine too long.
- Make sure to pee after sexual intercourse to prevent the spread of bacteria and reduce the risk of UTIs.
- Wipe from front to back when you use the toilet to avoid any spread of bacteria and infections from the anus to the urinary tract.
- Natural Supplements
You can use several natural supplements in order to decrease the risk of developing a UTI.l, including:
- Bearberry leaf:this is combination of bearberry leaf, dandelion root and dandelion leaf which work together to decreased UTI.
- Cranberry extract:It acts as cranberry juice
- Cranberry extract prevents the bacteria from adhering to the urinary tract.
- Garlic extract:Garlic proved to be an amazing home remedy with many antimicrobial properties. It has the ability to block the growth of bacteria to prevent UTIs.