Urinary Tract Infection

also known as a UTI

What is a Urinary Tract Infection?

A urinary tract infection is also known as a UTI. A UTI is in infection in the urinary system. This affects the uterus, bladder, and if not taken care of, the kidneys. A UTI is a lot more common in a girl than a boy. When you've got a UTI it is very important that you go to the doctor for medication to make sure you're getting rid of the infection as soon as possible. Whenever not taken care of, a UTI can spread to the kidneys and cause worsened problems.

What are some Symptoms of a UTI?

When you have a UTI, the symptoms will occur in a very short period of time.

Having a UTI includes having a bad smelling odor to your urine, a burning sensation while urinating, urine that will look cloudy, occasional pressure in your lower abdomen, and a consistent urge to use the bathroom even when you don't have to go. In women it is possible to feel pelvic pain, and rectal pain in men.

*If you don't take care of your UTI, the infection can worsen and also spread to your kidneys. If the UTI has spread to your kidneys, common symptoms are blood in urine, upper back and side pain, high fever, shaking, chills, nausea, and vomiting.

In adults, sometimes symptoms of a UTI are confused with other diseases.

How does a UTI Occur?

A UTI will occur whenever bacteria gets into the urinary tract. There are multiple ways bacteria can get into the urinary tract. The infection of the bladder is called cystitis and the infection of the urethra is called urethritis. The infection can occur from sexual activity or wiping bacteria from the anus to the urethra. Also Sexually Transmitted infections can cause urethritis.

Getting a UTI is more common in women because the urethra is closer to the anus which means that it is easier for bacteria to get in the urinary tract.

Some Risk Factors of a UTI would be Kidney Stones, being sexually active, certain types of contraception, and blockages in the urinary tract.

How do I Treat a UTI?

You should always go to a doctor when you have a UTI. At the doctors office, they will make you give them a urine sample so they can test your urine to check for infection. If there is infection and it has only been there for a couple days, the doctor will give you antibiotics to get rid of the infection. You should start feeling better within a couple days. As with all antibiotics, even if you are feeling better, you need to make sure you finish all of the antibiotics!

If you're a person who experiences frequent UTIs, you're doctor might prescribe you more antibiotics that will last longer than 7 days.

How do I Prevent Getting a UTI?

One very simple prevention to a UTI is drinking a lot of cranberry juice — not all at once but in general. Preventing a UTI goes much further than that. Good hygiene is a very important factor in preventing a UTI of any sort of infection/disease in that area. Make sure you're drinking plenty of water because water flushes out bacteria in the system. Wipe from front to back when using the restroom so you don't get any bacteria from the anus into the urethra. Along with being hygienic, you should drink a lot of water after any sort of sexual intercourse and wash yourself off.