Natural Remedies for UTI
What Is a Urinary Tract Infection?
A urinary tract infection (UTI) occurs when the structures and organs involved in the creation, transportation, and elimination of urine, such as the ureters, bladder, and urethra, are affected by bacteria. It is important to treat UTI as quickly as possible to prohibit the infection from spreading
to the kidneys.
While common in both men and women, women of reproductive age are more likely to develop urinary tract infections. It is believed that this happens because the urethra is shorter in women than in men, but also because the female anatomy allows for a more humid environment in which bacteria can thrive.
Causes of UTI
The most common cause of urinary tract infections is when a bacterium known as E.coli, which naturally inhabits the colon, spreads from the anus to the urethra. This means that almost everybody is at risk for this type of infection at one point or another, but there are certain factors that can increase the incidence of infection, including a lack of proper hygiene, improper wiping, and sexual intercourse.
Other causes for urinary tract infections are decreased immunity, an enlarged prostate in men or conditions that suppress the complete emptying of the bladder, a blockage of the urethra, and even the use of catheters in hospitalized patients.
While the underlying causes of UTIs are diverse, the initial symptoms are similar in all cases and can include:
If left unattended, a simple urinary tract infection can spread rapidly to the kidneys, increasing the severity of the symptoms, and creating a condition which may require emergency intervention.
Natural Ways to Prevent and Treat UTI
Prevention is the best approach to dealing with urinary tract infections, and just a few tips can make a big difference. Proper hygiene is key to avoiding the infection. Women and girls should always wipe from front to back, ensuring that bacteria from the perineum region cannot come into contact with the urethra. Making sure to wash hands after each bowel movement will also help to prevent infections, not only of the urinary tract but also of other types.
Hydration is an incredibly important part of prevention and just as important at the first sign of cystitis. Because UTIs are caused by the presence of bacteria in the urethra, nothing can flush them out better than urination itself. This is why drinking plenty of water throughout the day can improve urinary health.
Cranberries are highly recommended as preventative for UTI thanks to their ability to reduce the number of bacteria that adhere to the cells of the bladder and other structures. Drink plenty of water, unsweetened cranberry juice, and other unsweetened fruit juices and reduce your intake of refined sugars, sweet foods and drinks.
Do not hold your urine, and follow the call to urinate as quickly as possible.
Finally, because sexual intercourse allows for a wide range of bacteria to enter the urethra, urinating after sex is a good way to prevent UTIs, together with proper cleaning of the area before and after intercourse.