What Is The Urinary Tract
The urinary tract consists of:
- The kidneys: The majority of humans have two kidneys, one on either side of the abdomen. Kidneys clear poisonous substances from the blood.
- The ureters: Urine passes from the kidneys to the bladder through tubes called ureters. Each kidney has one ureter connecting it to the bladder.
- The bladder: This is a hollow organ in the lower abdomen that stores urine.
- The urethra: A tube that carries urine from the bladder to outside the body. In males, the urethra travels down the middle of the penis to an opening at the end. In females, the urethra runs from the bladder to just above the vaginal opening. The urethra in females is shorter than in males.
Benefits Of Antibiotics For Utis
Antibiotics are the standard treatment for UTIs because they kill the bacteria that cause the infections. Most UTIs develop when bacteria enter the urinary tract from outside the body. The species of bacteria most likely to be responsible for UTIs include:
- Escherichia coli species, which cause up to
More severe risks of using antibiotics include:
Risk Factors For A Kidney Infection
There are a few things that can up your risk factor of contracting a kidney infection, according to the Mayo Clinic, and some you have zero control over:
Having avagina. The urethra, that small tube that carries urine out of your body, is shorter in people with vaginas than it is in people with penises. That makes it easier for bacteria to travel from outside your body into the bladder. Your urethra is also close to your vagina and anus, which opens you up to more chances that bacteria from one of those areas will get into your urinary tract.
Having something blocking your urinary tract. That can be anything that slows down the flow of urine or makes it hard for you to fully empty your bladder when you pee, like a kidney stone.
Other potential risk factors include having damage to the nerves around your bladder, using a urinary catheter for the first time, and having a condition like vesicoureteral reflux, which causes urine to flow the wrong way, the Mayo Clinic says.
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Treatment Of Kidney Infection
Most kidney infections need;prompt treatment with;antibiotics to stop the infection damaging the kidneys or spreading to the bloodstream.
You may also need painkillers.
If you’re especially vulnerable to the effects of an infection , you may be admitted to hospital and treated with antibiotics through a drip.
Most people who are diagnosed and treated promptly with antibiotics feel completely better after about 2 weeks.
People who are older or have underlying conditions may take longer to recover.
Ways To Keep Your Kidneys Healthy
Your kidneys are fist-sized organs located at the bottom of your rib cage, on both sides of your spine. They perform several functions.
Most importantly, they filter waste products, excess water, and other impurities from your blood. These waste products are stored in your bladder and later expelled through urine.
In addition, your kidneys regulate pH, salt, and potassium levels in your body. They also produce hormones that regulate blood pressure and control the production of red blood cells.
Your kidneys are also responsible for activating a form of vitamin D that helps your body absorb calcium for building bones and regulating muscle function.
Maintaining kidney health is important to your overall health and general well-being. By keeping your kidneys healthy, your body will filter and expel waste properly and produce hormones to help your body function properly.
Here are some tips to help keep your kidneys healthy.
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Complementary Treatments You Can Do At Home
Some people prefer to treat medical conditions with home remedies or alternative remedies.
Because of how serious kidney infections are, its important that you dont rely on home remedies. Instead, you should take the prescription antibiotics your doctor gives you and use home remedies to help ease symptoms or pain. You can also use home remedies to avoid UTIs and improve kidney function.
How Long Can A Urinary Tract Infection Be Brewing Inside You Before Symptoms First Start Appearing
A key symptom of a UTI is a pain or burning when voiding.
Other symptoms may be frequent urges to urinate yet voiding little; and phantom urges when nothing comes out.
There may also be back, abdominal, pelvic and/or groin discomfort.
Its important to know what the definition of UTI is, begins Michael Ingber, MD, board certified in urology, female pelvic medicine and reconstructive surgery, and founder of The Center for Specialized Womens Health, division of Garden State Urology.
A lot of women come in and say, My doctor tells me I have UTIs every time I come in.
However, if there are no symptoms, by definition, this is not a UTI.
Even if a urinalysis shows the presence of bacteria or white blood cells, this is not diagnosed as a UTI if the patient reports no relevant symptoms.
Dr. Ingber continues, Some people have chronic bacteria in their urine, and this is not necessarily an infection.
When the bacteria ends up affecting the bladder lining and causes inflammation, pain, urgency, burning, this is what we call infection.
Again, to clarify: The American Urological Association and the Infectious Disease Society of America both require symptoms to be present to claim UTI.
So what this means is that you will not be diagnosed with a urinary tract infection in the absence of symptoms or before symptoms start.
Dr. Ingber explains, Some of our patients can have vague symptoms which last for days, weeks or even months before getting sick.
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Use Your Health Insurance Just Like You Normally Would To See Your Doctor
During your UTI treatment, you can take steps to ensure that you get the maximum effect out of your antibiotics while promoting your own comfort.
- Use a heating pad on your abdomen to soothe any pain and discomfort and relieve pressure.
- Drink plenty of water to help flush out the bacteria in your urinary tract.
- Avoid any food and drink that may irritate your urinary system. This includes coffee, alcohol, and sugary sodas that contain citrus juice or caffeine.
Preventing Future Urinary Tract Infections
BATHING AND HYGIENE
To prevent future urinary tract infections, you should:
- Choose sanitary pads instead of tampons, which some doctors believe make infections more likely. Change your pad each time you use the bathroom.
- DO NOT douche or use feminine hygiene sprays or powders. As a general rule, DO NOT use any product containing perfumes in the genital area.
- Take showers instead of baths. Avoid bath oils.
- Keep your genital area clean. Clean your genital and anal areas before and after sexual activity.
- Urinate before and after sexual activity. Drinking 2 glasses of water after sexual activity may help promote urination.
- Wipe from front to back after using the bathroom.
- Avoid tight-fitting pants. Wear cotton-cloth underwear and pantyhose, and change both at least once a day.
The following improvements to your diet may prevent future urinary tract infections:
- Drink plenty of fluids, 2 to 4 quarts each day.
- DO NOT drink fluids that irritate the bladder, such as alcohol and caffeine.
Some women have repeated bladder infections. Your provider may suggest that you:
- Use vaginal estrogen cream if you have dryness caused by menopause.
- Take a single dose of an antibiotic after sexual contact.
- Take a cranberry supplement pill after sexual contact.
- Have a 3-day course of antibiotics at home to use if you develop an infection.
- Take a single, daily dose of an antibiotic to prevent infections.
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Creating Stronger Strains Of Bacteria
Over time, some species of bacteria have become resistant to traditional antibiotics. There are several species of E. coli that are showing increasing drug resistance, and these are the primary cause of UTIs.
Every time people use an antibiotic, there is an increased risk of the bacteria developing resistance to it. This is even more likely when people do not follow the doctors instructions to complete the full prescribed course of treatment.
As a result, doctors are trying to reduce the use of antibiotics, especially when other treatments may be effective or when illnesses can resolve on their own.
It is essential to continue a course of antibiotics until the end date that the doctor provides. People should also never share antibiotics with others.
Understanding Your Urinary Tract
Your urinary tract, or urinary system, comprises several different organs designed to extract, hold, and transport waste from your system in the form of urine. The main organs involved in the urinary system include:
- The kidneys: These two organs sit on each side of your body, generally around the waist. They filter out excess water and waste from your blood to create urine.
- The ureters: These two thin tubes run between the kidney and bladder, transporting urine to the bladder.
- The bladder: This organ stores urine until it reaches a certain level, at which point you feel the need to pee. The body voluntarily contracts the muscles that line the bladder to urinate.
- The urethra: This thin tube connects the bladder to the outside of the body. When you urinate, a muscle called the urinary sphincter relaxes as your bladder contracts to remove urine from your body.
Urinary tract infections happen when bacteria infect any part of your urinary system, but they are most common in your lower urinary tract, comprising the urethra and bladder.
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What Are The Causes Of Kidney Infections
Normally, bacteria are flushed out by the flow of urine. However, several problems can increase the risk of a kidney infection. These problems can include:
- Structural abnormalities blocking urine flow.
- An enlarged prostate gland compressing the urethra.
- Backflow of urine from the bladder to the kidneys.
- If your immune system is affected .
- Pregnancy, during which time the enlarging uterus can squeeze the ureters and reduce the flow of urine, allowing the bacteria to migrate to the kidneys.
- Uncontrolled diabetes mellitus.
What Are The Symptoms Of A Kidney Infection
Symptoms usually develop quickly, over a few hours or so, and may include:
- Pain in a loin or flank. .
- High temperature which may cause shivers.
- Feeling sick and/or being sick .
- Blood in the urine.
- There will also usually be symptoms of a bladder infection – for example, pain on passing urine, and going to the toilet often.
Not all of the symptoms may develop, and sometimes a kidney infection can just cause vague symptoms. For example, just feeling generally unwell but not being able to say why.
In older people a kidney infection may cause confusion. This is why a urine test is often done when an elderly person suddenly becomes confused or appears generally unwell.
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Ideas To Talk To Your Doctor About
If you get a lot of UTIs, your doctor may consider:
- A daily low dose of antibiotics, taken for 6 months or longer
- Having you test yourself for a UTI at home when you have symptoms
- Taking a single dose of antibiotics after having sex
If youâve gone through menopause, you could ask about estrogen vaginal cream. After menopause, women have less estrogen in their bodies, which can cause vaginal dryness and make the urinary tract more vulnerable to infection. The treatment can help balance the areaâs pH factor and allow âgoodâ bacteria to flourish again.
Natural Ways To Prevent A Kidney Infection
Its no secret that the most common type of urinary tract infectionbladder infectioncan be painful and inconvenient . What you may not know is that the bacteria responsible for a bladder infection can spread to one or both of your kidneys. Left untreated, the resulting kidney infectionmedically known as pyelonephritiscan lead to permanent kidney damage or even a life-threatening infection called sepsis that can travel throughout your entire body.
Its estimated that, out of every 10,000 people in the United States, about a dozen women and three to four men are affected by a kidney infection. That may not sound like a lot but consider this: Kidney infections cause most of the 100,000 hospital visits for UTIs in the U.S. each year. If you suffer from acute or chronic bladder infections or show the signs of a kidney infection, its smart to seek immediate medical treatment. Smarter still? Practice prevention to sidestep kidney infections before they start.
Women are four times more likely than men to develop a kidney infection.
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What Causes A Kidney Infection
Scientists believe that most kidney infections start as a bladder infection that moves upstream to infect one or both of your kidneys. Most often, the infection is caused by bacteria that normally live in your bowel. The urinary tract has several ways to prevent infection from moving up the urinary tract. For example, urination most often flushes out bacteria before it reaches the bladder. Sometimes your body cant fight the bacteria and the bacteria cause a UTI. If you dont get medical treatment to stop the infection, the bacteria may infect your kidneys.
In some cases, your blood can carry bacteria or viruses from another part of your body to your kidneys.
Drink Lots Of Liquid Especially Water
Liquids can help flush bacteria from the urinary system. Water is best. Most healthy people should try to drink six to eight, 8-ounce glasses of liquid each day. If you need to drink less water because of other health conditions, such as bladder control problems, kidney failure or heart disease, ask your health care provider how much liquid is healthy for you.
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When To Seek Medical Attention
Kidney infections are severe conditions that require immediate medical attention. This condition cause long-term kidney damage if left untreated.
Sometimes severe kidney infection causes sepsis, that eventually leads to shock. Thats why kidney infection cannot be allowed to progress further.
Although these natural remedies can help soothe most of the symptoms of kidney infections, youre highly recommended to visit a doctor for proper diagnosis and treatment.
How To Treat Utis
If you think you have a UTI, the first thing you should do is schedule an appointment with your OBGYN or primary care physician. Many women will try to self-treat it, or worse, just hope it goes away on its own. And while some minor UTIs do go away on their own, its best to see a doctor and have them diagnose and treat it as the infection can spread to other parts of your body and be dangerous.;
Your doctor will take a urine sample which will allow them to diagnose it right then and there, meaning youll leave the office with an answer and a solution! Well choose an antibiotic based on the type of bacteria you have, taking into account other factors like pregnancy, allergies, other medications, and medical history. Now all you have to do is take the full cycle of treatment to make sure the infection is completely gone.;
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Consume Apples And Apple Juice
Apples are also nutrient-dense. Their high acid content may help the kidneys to maintain acidity in the urine, possibly inhibiting further growth of bacteria. They also have anti-inflammatory properties, which may be beneficial in helping the kidneys to heal following the infection. Learn more about the many health benefits of apples.
How Do I Know If The Treatment Isnt Working
If the treatment isnt working, your symptoms will stay the same, get worse, or you will develop new symptoms. Call your doctor if you have a fever , chills, lower stomach pain, nausea, and vomiting. You should also call your doctor if, after taking medicine for 3 days, you still have a burning feeling when you urinate. If you are pregnant, you should also call your doctor if you have any contractions.
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What Is Kidney Infection
Infection in the urinary tract can involve the lower tract especially the bladder , prostate or the upper tract and kidney . It is usually a bacterial infection. The disease occurs in roughly three to seven of every 10,000 people in the United States. The occurrence in pregnant women is about 2 percent. It is readily treatable if diagnosed early.
A bacteria called Escherichia Coli causes about 90 percent of kidney infections. The bacteria migrate from the genitals through the urethra into the bladder and up the tubes that connect the bladder to the kidneys.
Some bacteria, such as staphylococcus infections, can enter the kidneys from the bloodstream.
How To Get Rid Of A Uti In 24 Hours
Are you experiencing painful urination and a constant need to run to the bathroom? If so, then youre already wondering how to get rid of a UTI in 24 hours. The seven home remedies in this article can help.
If youre still experiencing symptoms after 24 hours, then you need antibiotics. To get your hands on them, youll need to visit the doctor.
The doctors at Oxford Urgent Care will provide you with prompt treatment and relief. Check out our contact information and visit our office as soon as possible to remedy your UTI.