Healthy Living

Have a Urinary Tract Infection? Here’s What to Do

May. 23, 2024

 

On average, people have to go to the bathroom around six times each day to pee. If bacteria gets inside the urethra, the thin tube that transports urine out of your body, it can infect any part of your urinary tract, causing a urinary tract infection (UTI). Proper UTI care treats the problem and improves your quality of life.
 

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According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the most common UTI is a bladder infection. Kidney infections are more serious but less common.

Symptoms of a UTI may include:

  • Abdominal or groin cramping or pressure
  • Blood in the urine
  • Burning or painful sensation when urinating
  • Fever and/or chills
  • Frequent urination, possibly even with an empty bladder
  • Lower back pain
  • Nausea and/or vomiting

Prevent UTIs

Here’s how to prevent bacteria from entering your urethra:

  • Go to the bathroom. When you hold your urine, bacteria can remain inside your body. Practice good hygiene and get rid of bacteria by urinating at least every two or three hours.
  • Wipe properly. After using the restroom, girls and women should wipe from front to back. This specific action reduces the risk of fecal bacteria entering the urethra.
  • Don’t add products. Wash with soap and water like the rest of your skin and avoid using sprays, powders, and douches around your genitals.
  • Urinate after intercourse. Sexual activity can introduce bacteria to your genital area. Urinating and even bathing before and after sex helps keep the area clear of bacteria and protects your health.
  • Drink more fluids. By staying well hydrated, you help your body flush out bacteria that enter your urinary tract. For years, some believed that drinking cranberry juice could prevent recurrent UTIs. However, the Food & Drug Administration recently stated that this claim lacks scientific proof. Drinking water works just fine.

How to Treat a UTI

Some UTIs go away on their own, but not all. Left untreated, bladder infections can worsen and spread to the kidneys.

Regardless of the type or severity of infection, antibiotics help treat UTIs. While you should begin feeling better within a couple of days, take the entire course of antibiotics. Doing so ensures your prescribed UTI care destroys all bacteria.

Before Starting Antibiotics for a UTI

A confirmed diagnosis leads to quick treatment for urinary tract infections. Don’t have time to go to your provider’s office? Get expert UTI care with an On-Demand Video Visit from UR Medicine.

During a Video Visit, you discuss your symptoms and health history with a medical provider. Your provider can prescribe antibiotics, while you stay in the comfort of your home.

An in-person visit is necessary for men, women 65 and over, and people diagnosed with a kidney infection.

Get Care Now

Take advantage of our On-Demand Video Visits for easy access to convenient UTI care.

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