Thursday, March 11th, 2010

Urinary Tract Infection

utiUrinary tract functions as the body’s filtering system for the removal of liquid wastes. Both women and men suffer from bladder infections. The anatomy of women makes them more vulnerable to Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs), and they are likely to have frequent episodes of infection.

Causes

• Bacteria can reach the bladder more easily in women, as the urethera is shorter in women, so bacteria have a shorter distance to travel.

• In women the urethra is also located near the rectum in women. Bacteria from the rectum can easily travel up the urethra and cause infections.

• Women who are sexually active tend to have more UTIs. Sexual intercourse can irritate the urethra, allowing germs to  travel more easily through the urethra into the bladder. Women who use diaphragms for birth control also may be at higher risk, as are women who use spermicidal agents. After menopause, UTIs may become more common because tissues of the vagina, urethra and the base of the bladder become thinner and more fragile due to the loss of estrogen.

• Not voiding of bladder when the urge arises.

• Childhood history of urinary infections, pregnancy and diabetes can increase chances of catching the infection.

Symptoms

• Unmistakable sharp pain on urination
• Strong urge to urinate
• Urination in spurts
• Pain in abdomen
• Incontinence
• Cloudy urine, or blood in urine

Prevention


• Drink plenty of liquids, especially water
• Urinate promptly when the urge arises.
• Washing from front to back after urinating and after a bowel movement helps prevent bacteria in the anal region from spreading to the vagina and urethra.
• Lubricate enough before an intercourse.
• Empty your bladder as soon as possible after intercourse.
• Avoid using powders and body sprays in genital areas.

UTIs go away with proper and prompt treatment. Usually, antibiotics suffice for treating infection. If you have a recurring history of UTI, your doctor may prescribe antibiotics for a longer period. When taking antibiotics, include yoghurt in your diet. If not treated, UTI can be more than a set of uncomfortable symptoms. It can lead to kidney infections, which could permanently damage kidneys.

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Category: Health Concerns
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