Urinary Tract Infection – Symptoms, Risk Factors and Prevention
Urinary tract infection (UTI) is an infection which can happen in any part of urinary system – kidneys, ureters, bladder and urethra. Women are more prone than men to get infected form UTI.
Symptoms of infection in upper urinary tract (kidney and ureters) are different from symptoms of infection in the lower urinary tract (bladder and urethra), however, in some cases they can overlap.
Following are the common symptoms to identify lower UTI
- Burning sensation when you urinate
- Frequent urge for urination
- Strong or intense urge to urinate
- Cloudy, dark or bloody urine
- Strange or strong smelly urine
- Pelvic pain (in women)
Symptoms of upper urinary tract include
- High temperature(fever) of 38 C (100.4F)or above
- Pain in groin or lower back
Risk factors for UTI include
- Female Anatomy
- Sexually active women
- Urinary tract abnormalities
- Blockage in urinary tract
- A suppressed immune system
- Use of catheter
- Recent urinary TRACT surgery or examination
Detection and Treatment
If you suspect that you might have UTI, you should consult a doctor who might ask you to have a simple urine test to check if your urine has bacteria which causes UTI. For treating UTI you might have to take a course of antibiotics prescribed by your doctor, it is suggested to complete the complete course of the medicine even if you have started feeling better. Drinking a lot of water also helps in getting the bacteria flushed of.
UTI Preventive Measures
A lot of preventive measures can be taken to reduce the risk of your getting infected with UTI, below mentioned are a few: –
- Drinking plenty of fluid (especially water).
- Choose showers over baths.
- Avoid use of feminine products in genital areas (deodorants, powders etc.).
- Passing urine after intercourse.
- Change in birth control methods (like diaphragms, unlubricated condoms etc.)
- Keeping your genital area dry by wearing cotton panties and loose clothes.
- Wipe from front to back.
- Empty your bladder when you feel need to do it.