As many as 60% of American women can expect to suffer from a urinary tract infection (UTI) at some point in their lives. For fully 25% of that group, UTIs are a recurring problem. It’s a much smaller problem for men, but both genders have an increased risk of infection as they get older.
At Refresh Wellness, we frequently treat minor UTIs, clearing up the problem quickly with the assistance of targeted antibiotics after confirming the presence of the infection. Following through the course of medication to its end usually clears your symptoms quickly.
As UTI specialists, we also know that you can often prevent infections by making a few small changes to your lifestyle. We’ve prepared five suggestions for you to consider, strategies to help you avoid UTI problems now and in the future.
You may not have symptoms with every UTI, but chances are good that you’ll notice changes with urination that alert you to the infection. Burning sensations as you urinate are common, and your urine itself may seem different, cloudy with an unusual discharge or with a strong odor.
You may feel the urge to go more often, yet you produce little urine. Bladder infections could produce blood in the urine and pelvic pain.
These are common signs of UTI in the urethra or bladder. More serious infections could affect your kidneys. In this case, you might experience back or side pain as well as chills, fever, and nausea.
Preventing an infection is less trouble than treating one. Fortunately, there are some simple things you can do to reduce your risk. Build these into your life and you might never be slowed by UTIs again.
Because of the design of female anatomy, the urinary tract is uncomfortably close to the anus, a common site for bacteria like E. coli, which can cause UTIs. Be sure that wiping motions always go from front to back to avoid bringing bacteria toward the urethral opening.
Drinking lots of water, every day, is not only a good preventive idea, it can sometimes help you clear up mild UTIs. Water dilutes your urine, which in turn dilutes any bacteria present in your bladder. Aim for about 50 ounces (1.5 liters) daily.
If you feel the urge to urinate, find a bathroom. Bacteria love warm, wet places to grow, so urine sitting in your bladder may be an active breeding ground. Urinating 4-8 times a day is normal.
Intercourse may be a route for bacteria into your body. Urinating soon after sex can potentially flush these bacterial invasions.
Spermicides and diaphragms promote bacterial growth. If you or your partner use these options, rethink your family planning method if frequent UTIs become an issue.
There’s plenty more you can do to prevent UTIs or their recurrence. When you suspect an active infection, contact us at Refresh Wellness for diagnosis and treatment. Book an appointment online or call our Garland, Texas, office directly to schedule your visit today.