From time to time, most people get urinary tract infections. At best, they are mild in nature and discomfort and can be treated easily and quickly with products like Ural. At worst, if left untreated, they can lead to kidney damage and possible failure, bladder infections, cystitis and a lot of pain and discomfort.
The unfortunate truth is that whilst we can all suffer the effects of a urinary tract infection, it is women who are more prone to them. This is mostly due to anatomy and the fact that the urethra in a woman is quite short. This means that infectious bacteria can travel quickly into the bladder and cause the uncomfortable symptoms of cystitis.
The Symptoms of Cystitis
Once the infection travels far enough up the urethra, it enters the bladder and can cause a condition called cystitis, which is an inflammation and infection of the bladder. Cystitis symptoms have common elements to them, but can vary from person to person depending on the intensity of the infection and the pain response of the sufferer. In general, the symptoms of cystitis follow this pattern:
- An urge to urinate that is persistent, even when the bladder has seemingly been emptied and only a few drops of urine are passed.
- When urinating, there is a burning sensation that can be felt in the urethra and at the opening of the urethra. The sensation is as if one is urinating hot water.
- Quite often, the urine passed is strong in smell, cloudy or even bloody, if the infection in the bladder is severe enough.
- Abdominal pain can also be experienced by some people, either due to the intensity of the infection or simply due to their own pain response.
As mentioned earlier, it is women who are more prone to bouts of cystitis. Those who are pregnant, who have had catheters inserted for surgical procedures, who are going through menopause, and who are sexually active, are all more at risk. Men do suffer from urinary tract infections and cystitis, but the prevalence in men is only higher once they are older.
Managing and Treating Cystitis
In most cases, cystitis and urinary tract infections need to be treated with antibiotics prescribed by a doctor so that the bacteria can be eliminated. But there are things you can do to minimise the discomfort of the symptoms. By drinking plenty of water and making your urine more alkaline by using products like Ural, you can actually help to relieve some of the symptoms of the disease. Some people who suffer UTIs and cystitis on a regular basis drink unsweetened cranberry juice also, because it can change the lining of the bladder to make it harder for bacteria to adhere to it.
If you suffer from this illness regularly, here are some things you can do to help prevent it:
- Make sure you always urinate when you need to, rather than holding it for long periods of time. By keeping the bladder as empty as possible, you minimise the risk of bacteria causing problems.
- Drink plenty of water each day to flush out your kidneys, bladder and urinary tract.
- Keep your genitals washed and clean, but don’t use deodorants, soaps or bubble baths around this sensitive area.
- Wipe from front to back after defecating so that bacteria is not introduced accidentally to the genital area.
Even though urinary tract and bladder infections are common, they can be treated and even prevented if proper care is taken.