Urinary Tract Infections
Urinary tract infections, or UTIs, are a common infection. Women are more prone to UTIs than men, but anyone can get one. And getting a UTI will definitely affect your health, and put a stop to your sex life. That’s why Karaz’s Yasmine takes a moment to explain the details of what it is, how it happens, symptoms and treatments to look out for.
UTI: What Is It, and How It Happens
So what happens? Bacteria called Escherichia coli (E. coli) get into the organs of the urinary tract (urethra, bladder, ureters, kidneys) and start to grow. The bacteria usually get in through the urethra, the same tube that gets urine out of your bladder. It works its way from the urethra to the urinary tract and causes a bladder infection. In worse cases, it travels back to the ureters (the tubes that carry urine from the kidneys to the bladder), and can end up causing a kidney infection.
But UTIs can also happen if:
- The bladder is not fully drained during urination, giving bacteria a chance to grow in the remaining urine.
- A diaphragm pushes against the urethra, making it difficult to completely empty the bladder.
- A man has an enlarged prostate, preventing the bladder from fully draining.
UTI: Common Symptoms
UTIs are painful. If you notice any of these symptoms, pay attention:
- a burning sensation when you pee
- the need to urinate more often
- an urge to go to the bathroom, but nothing comes out
- a constant ache in your lower abdomen
- Smelly, dark, cloudy or bloody urine
UTI: Early Diagnosis and Treatment
UTIs are easily treated and usually caught early. You just need to look out for the signs. This can be done through a urine test to check if you have it. Treatment usually just needs antibiotics for a couple of weeks and only require further tests if it keeps recurring and there might be other underlying causes.
UTI: Late Diagnosis and Treatment
If a UTI makes its way to your kidneys, it will feel much worse than the regular symptoms. You might also experience:
- Lower back pain
Kidney infections are obviously more serious and must be treated ASAP. It’s important not to ignore any symptoms to avoid longer treatment and hospitalization.
If you think you have a UTI, talk to your doctor as soon as possible.