URINARY TRACT INFECTIONS

The urinary tract consists of the kidneys, the urethra (the tubes that bring urine from the kidneys to the bladder), the bladder (which collects urine) and the urethra (the tube that brings urine from the bladder to the outside). Urinary tract infections (UTIs) occur as bacteria enter the urethra and pass into the bladder.

If the infection persists in the bladder alone, it is considered a bladder infection, or "simple cystitis." If the infection spreads beyond the bladder and into the kidneys, it is called a kidney infection, or "pyelonephritis."

Bladder infections are one of the most common infections, causing symptoms such as burning with urination and the need to urinate regularly. Kidney infections are less frequent than infections of the bladder and can have similar effects, but they can also cause fever, back pain and nausea or vomiting.

PREDISPOSING FACTORS FOR UTIs:

Bacteria that cause urinary tract infections (UTIs) usually do not reside in the urinary tract, but live in the gastrointestinal tract and near to the urethra in women and men who are not circumcised.

E Coli is the bacteria involved in over 90% of UTIs.

UTIs occur as E Coli enter the urethra and pass across the urinary tract. Factors which increase the risk of developing a UTI include:

  • Frequent sex - Sexual activity increases microbial activity and can lead to UTIs

  • Diabetes - Glucose load can increase bacterial growth

  • Use of spermicide for birth control can alter pH and predispose to UTIs

  • Gut dysbiosis - Most UTIs are caused by the bacteria E. coli which is a part of gut flora. When we are not able to maintain healthy gut flora, E.coli can dominate healthy gut flora and then cross contaminate bladder to cause UTI

  • For men, not being circumcised

  • Frequent anal sex

  • Use of urinary catheter

SYMPTOMS OF UTIs

  • Constant urge to urinate

  • Pain or burning sensation when urinating

  • Presence of blood in urine

  • Discomfort in the lower abdomen

  • Frequent, small volume of urine

WAYS TO PREVENT UTIs

  • Hydration

Drinking liquid such as water helps dilute your urine and means that you urinate more frequently thus; allowing bacteria to be washed out of your urinary tract before an infection can begins.

  • Probiotics 

As stated earlier, most UTIs are caused by E coli which comes from gut. A well balanced and healthy gut flora can help prevent dominance of E coli and reduce UTI risk. Certain probiotic strains have proven to be effective.

Solution to Pollution is Dilution

Water Purifier & Glass
Prebiotics and Probiotics.jpg
  • Cranberry products - Do they help?

While cranberry helps reduce frequency and symptoms and frequency of UTIs, cranberry juice is frequently loaded with sugar and additional processed ingredients which can actually increase the risk of UTIs.

 ​

  • Wiping from front to back

Wiping from front to back especially in a female individual after urinating and bowel movements helps prevent infection in the anal region from spreading to the vagina and urethra.

  • Avoiding potentially irritating feminine products

Using deodorant sprays or other feminine items, such as douches and powders, in the genital region can irritate the urethra.