UTI is an infection that can occur in any part of the urinary system. UTI can be anywhere in the kidneys, ureters, bladder or urethra. Most infections are found in the lower urinary tract, the bladder, and the urethra.
Women run at greater risk of developing a UTI as compared to men are. Infections linked to the bladder can be very painful and annoying. There are serious consequences in case the UTI spreads to the kidneys.
Doctors generally treat UTIs by prescribing antibiotics. But the female can also take certain steps on her own part to reduce the chances of getting a UTI in the first place.
UTIs do not always show specific symptoms. But in some cases they show symptoms, like the ones mentioned below:
- A strong and frequent urge to urinate
- A burning sensation while urinating
- Urinating frequently, small amounts of urine
- Cloudy urine
- red, bright pink or cola-colored urine. This means that there is a sign of blood in the urine
- Pungent or foul-smelling urine
- Pelvic pain.
UTIs generally happen in case the bacteria enters the urinary tract through the urethra and then multiplies in the urinary bladder. The human urinary system is designed to keep out the bad microscopic bacteria, the defense system can fail at times. And in circumstances where it fails, the bacteria then overpowers and grows into a fully active infection inside the urinary tract system.
Commonly, UTIs occur in females and target the urinary bladder and urethra.
- Infection of the bladder (cystitis)- This specific type of UTI usually is caused by Escherichia coli (E. coli), a kind of bacteria that is commonly found in the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. But sometimes, other bacteria may also be responsible.
Sexual intercourse can also cause cystitis, but a female does not have to sexually active to develop this type of UTI. All females run at risk of getting cystitis UTI because of the female body’s system, which means a short distance from the urethra to the anal and the urethral opening to the urinary bladder.
- Infection of the urethra (urethritis). This type of UTI can happen when the bacteria spread from the anus to the urethra of the female body. Because the urethral opening is closer to the female’s vagina, STIs like herpes, gonorrhea, chlamydia, mycoplasma, etc can also lead to urethritis.
Effective Home Remedies to treat UTIs
UTI is one of the most common bacterial infections among females. When the bacteria present inside the gut, find a way into the urinary tract, it can cause this infection. Prescribed medication mostly resolves the condition. But even home remedies work very well in this case. The infections can take a little longer to cure with home remedies, but it does. Below are mentioned some useful some home remedies for UTIs.
- Drink Plenty of Water- Gynecologists recommend the patients to drink enough water as it is the most effective home remedies for treating infections of the urinary tract. Drinking at least two to four liters of water can be of help. Because the body produces more urine, the bacteria automatically gets flushed out, giving some relief from the infection.
- Urinate Frequently- It is highly recommended to not hold in your urine as it can lead to more bacterial multiplication in the bladder. Urinate and empty your bladder frequently and avoid holding the urge to pee for a long time.
- Cranberry Juice –Drink cranberry juice as it is highly beneficial in treating UTIs. The cranberry fruit and juice helps in preventing the growth of E.Coli, which is the most common reason that causes these infections.
- Shun Bladder Irritants- Females should control the intake of alcohol and other carbonated drinks when they are suffering from a urinary tract infection. The high sugar content in such drinks acts as a perfect habitat for bacteria to breed and colonize.
- Probiotics- The good bacteria present in yogurt provides a safety shield against the bacteria which causes the infection. Taking probiotic-rich food items increases the body’s natural bacteria that can war off the bad bacteria and infections and not allow them to breed or multiply.
- Wear Loose Clothes- Keep your intimate areas healthy, clean and dry and wear comfortable, loose-fitting clothes to help ease the condition of UTI. Comfortable and loose clothes let the skin breathe and stay ventilated. Also, avoid wearing nylon clothing.
- Green Tea- Drinking green tea can really help treat UTIs! Green tea has a compound named “catechin” that is rich in antimicrobial properties. It can also act as a diuretic and then help the body flush out the harmful bacteria.
- Apple Cider Vinegar – Add two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar in a glass of water and have it on an empty stomach. This can flush off the bladder infections in the body. It is an antibacterial agent that alkalizes the inner system of the body.
- Garlic- Allicin, active compounds found in raw garlic prevents the harmful bacteria from growing. A woman with UTI is advised to have raw, crushed garlic or have infused garlic water.
By following these remedies, a female will be able to treat the UTIs at home.
A female can take precautionary measures to reduce the risk of urinary tract infections:
- Drink plenty of water and other healthy liquids
- Drink cranberry juice
- Empty the bladder right after sexual intercourse
- Change your birth control method
In case you suspect symptoms of UTI or have not found relief of a present condition after taking home remedies or medication, consult our expert UTI doctors at Pristyn Care and put an end to the troubling condition!
About the Author:
– Dr. Garima Sawhney
– MBBS, M.S | Gynaecologist & Obstetrician, trained in Cosmetic & Aesthetic Gynaecology (ESAG), Specialist in Minimal Access Surgery