Robina 7 Day Doctors and Acupuncture recommends this video on UTI:
Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are very common – particularly in women, babies and older people. Around one in two women and one in 20 men will get a UTI in their lifetime.
The kidneys control the amount of water in the blood and filter out waste products to form urine. Each kidney has a tube called a ureter, which joins the kidney to the bladder. The urine leaves the kidneys through the ureters and enters the bladder. The bladder ‘signals’ the urge to urinate and urine leaves the body through a tube called the urethra.
The urinary system is designed to minimise the risk of serious infection in the kidneys. It does this by preventing the urine from flowing back up into the kidneys from the bladder. The majority of urinary infections are confined to the bladder and, while causing symptoms, are not serious or life threatening.
Symptoms of UTIs
Some of the symptoms of UTIs include:
- wanting to urinate more often and urgently, if only a few drops
- burning pain or a ‘scalding’ sensation when urinating
- a feeling that the bladder is still full after urinating
- pain above the pubic bone
- blood in the urine.
Causes of UTIs
To infect the urinary system, a micro-organism usually has to enter through the urethra or, rarely, from the bloodstream. The most common culprit is a bacterium common to the digestive tract called Escherichia coli (E. coli). It is usually spread to the urethra from the anus.
Prevention of UTIs
Although not always backed up by clinical research, some women have found some suggestions useful in reducing their risk of developing urinary tract infections, including:
- Drink plenty of water and other fluids to flush the urinary system.
- Treat vaginal infections such as thrush or trichomonas quickly.
- Avoid using spermicide-containing products, particularly with a diaphragm contraceptive device.
- Practice good hygiene.
- Go to the toilet as soon as you feel the urge to urinate, rather than holding on.
- Wipe yourself from front to back (urethra to anus) after going to the toilet.
- Empty your bladder after sex.
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