If you’ve ever been diagnosed with a urinary tract infection, most commonly referred to as a UTI, you can attest to the fact that they’re uncomfortable and can be a challenge to get rid of sometimes. What’s worse than having a UTI is having one that keeps coming back and seems impossible to shake.
What Is A UTI?
A UTI is an infection that is found in the urinary tract, which includes your urethra, bladder, kidneys, and ureters, the tubes that move urine from the kidneys to the bladder. The normal path of urine in your system is that it flows from the kidneys, through the ureters, and into your bladder. If bacteria is introduced into this system, a UTI may develop. It doesn’t always end as a simple UTI, though. Bacteria can also find its way into the kidneys, causing a kidney infection, which can pose much more complicated issues than a normal infection of the urinary tract.
UTIs are fairly common, especially amongst women. UTIs occur most frequently when you’re sexually active, have gone through menopause, have trouble urinating, have an immune disorder, or have previously had an infection. Additionally, women are more likely to get an infection due to the length of their urethra, which is shorter than that of a man’s, making it easier for bacteria to travel through their system. Similarly, a woman’s anatomy places the urethra close to the rectum, which is where bacteria often originates.
How Do I Know It’s A UTI?
Urinary tract infections usually present themselves with a strong need to urinate, with the urine often being cloudy, strong-smelling, or even bloody. It is usually painful to urinate, and the infection may also present with nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain. A UTI can be diagnosed through a simple urine test and can often be treated with antibiotics.
What If They Keep Coming Back?
Recurrent UTIs are defined as having two infections in a period of six months or three infections in a year. Most recurrences are due to a new infection as opposed to the old infection lingering. There are a few reasons why these recurrences might happen, including having cell receptors that bacteria is more prone to affecting. Those who are sexually active are also more prone to infections, due to the fact that bacteria is more likely to spread during sex, which is why proper hygiene and urinating after sex is very important. Your diet can also contribute. If you’re not well hydrated, your body may have difficulty flushing out bacteria effectively. Additionally, a balanced diet can keep your bowels running properly, meaning there’s less pressure on your bladder from your bowels. Diarrhea can also more easily spread bacteria. If you feel like you might have a urinary tract infection, especially if you suffer from recurrent UTis, it’s important to book an appointment with Mississippi Urology Clinic for an official diagnosis. A simple UTI can develop into a more complex infection if untreated. On the other hand, the symptoms could also come from a different type of infection that may require a different type of treatment. Most importantly, don’t suffer these symptoms without reaching out for help. We can diagnose a UTI and have you feeling better soon with the proper medication and treatment.