Urinary Tract Infection (UTI)
Urinary tract infections, commonly called UTIs and sometimes referred to as bladder infections, are very common in males and females of all ages.
While symptoms are not always present, if a UTI isn’t treated, it can develop into something more serious, such as a kidney infection. So, it’s important to be aware of any changes in urination, such as frequency and appearance, and to see your physician if changes do occur.
Signs and Symptoms
If you are experiencing any of the following symptoms, you should see your physician as soon as possible to get a urine test and treatment, if necessary.
- A strong, frequent urge to urinate, sometimes producing just small amounts of urine
- Painful, burning urination
- Urine that appears cloudy, red, bright pink, or brownish
- Strong-smelling urine
Prevention and Treatment
There are many reasons why you may contract a UTI, but the root cause is bacteria entering the urinary tract through the urethra. Typically, any bacteria are flushed out naturally, but sometimes the bacteria takes hold in the urinary tract and becomes an infection.
Women are more susceptible to UTIs simply due to anatomy. A woman has a shorter urethra than a man does, and the distance the bacteria has to travel to reach the bladder is also shorter.
While there is little that can be done to prevent UTIs beyond maintaining good hygiene and drinking a lot of water, there are over-the-counter products, such as D-Mannose, that help to promote urinary tract health.
There are, however, no over-the-counter cures for UTI. But you can purchase an over-the-counter urinary pain reliever to make symptoms more bearable until you can get to your doctor for antibiotics. While you may have heard that cranberry juice is useful for both the prevention and treatment of UTIs, it has not been shown to help with either in clinical studies.
To schedule a urinalysis or to consult with one of our Urology specialists about frequent UTIs, schedule an appointment with Kelsey-Seybold Clinic in Houston.