Anyone who has ever had a urinary tract infection (UTI) knows how miserable it can make you. When it comes to these types of health issues, prevention is always better than having it treated. UTIs are more common in women, but men can get them as well.
How to prevent a UTI
Here are seven tips that will help you prevent UTIs:
Drinking about six glasses of water each day will keep a person properly hydrated. Water also serves as a cleaner for internal systems. It flushes the urinary tract and keeps it healthy. Anything that makes a person urinate more is good for the urinary tract, but it is best to avoid drinks that contain alcohol or caffeine since they can irritate the bladder.
Do not hold it in
You should urinate whenever you feel the urge. Holding it in allows any bacteria inside to develop into an infection.
Wipe from front to back
Women especially should always wipe from the front then move backward. This prevents bacteria on the anus from getting transferred to the vagina. Bacteria from the anus are often the reason a person has a UTI.
Urinate and wash up after sex
Urinate as soon as possible after having sex. This helps to flush out any germs that enter the urinary tract. Cleaning your genitals after having sex is also a good idea.
Take more showers
Bacteria can move through the standing water and enter the urinary tract during baths. Showers are better since the water immediately drains, reducing the spread of bacteria.
Avoid feminine deodorants
Reports indicate that these products increase a woman's risk of getting a UTI.
Use water-based lubricants to prevent vaginal dryness. Women who have reached menopause should consider using a vaginal cream to prevent dryness.
People who have reoccurring UTIs should consider trying new sexual positions to lower the friction on the urethra during sex. There are also antibiotics that patients can take after having sex that reduce the risk of infections. Contraceptives like diaphragms should be avoided since they have also been linked to UTIs.
Home remedies for UTIs
Drinking antioxidant-rich juices like cranberry juice can help to prevent UTIs. Of course, it is not as effective as antibiotics. Please be aware that home remedies cannot remove a UTI. You will need to see a doctor who will likely prescribe antibiotics to fight the infection.
Treatment for UTIs
The go-to treatment for UTIs is antibiotics. These attack the source of the infection, the bacteria in the patient's urinary tract. Most patients begin to notice a difference about three days after starting the medication.
The effectiveness of antibiotics varies for each patient. Generally speaking, patients who overuse antibiotics are more likely to have an infection from the bacteria that become resistant to antibiotics.
Are you dealing with a UTI? Schedule a consultation with one of our doctors and explore your options.