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UTI in women: Tips to deal with unitary tract infection | Health

UTI (urinary tract infection) is more common in women than men. Usually a bacterial infection, it mainly affects kidneys, urethra, bladder, or urethra of a woman. It is estimated that around 40–50% of women experience one episode of UTI in their lives and 20–30% of may have subsequent episodes. Most UTI infections are related to bladder and urethra. The infection may spread to kidneys and cause serious health issues if not tackled on time. Women are said to be at an increased risk of UTI because their urethra – a tube from bladder to outside – is short and located close to the rectum; this enables bacteria to easily travel from skin, vagina, or rectum to the bladder. Menopause can also raise risk of UTI. (Also read: New drug found effective for treating complicated urinary tract infections: Study)

Frequent urination, pain and lower abdominal discomfort, fatigue, nausea, vomiting, fever, and burning sensation while urination is the red flags seen in women with UTI. (Freepik)

Apart from women, elderly is also at greater risk of UTIs because with age, people may develop urine retention or incontinence because of weaker pelvic floor or bladder muscles due to which urine may stay in urinary tract and could increase chances of bacteria.

“A urinary tract infection (UTI) means a bacterial infection that takes place in the urinary system. It is mainly in the kidneys, urethra, bladder, and urethra of a woman. If the UTI is left untreated, then it can lead to kidney infections as the kidneys can become inflamed. Are you aware? Frequent urination, pain and lower abdominal discomfort, fatigue, nausea, vomiting, fever, and burning sensation while urination is the red flags seen in women with UTI. It will be imperative for women to take timely treatment in the form of medication suggested by the doctor only. Apart from the treatment, women will have to follow personal hygiene practices that can help to manage UTIs,” says Dr Anu Vij, Consultant Obstetrician and Gynecologist, Medicover Hospitals, Navi Mumbai.


Apart from the treatment, women may follow these personal hygiene practices suggested by Dr Vij that can help manage UTIs.

• Hydration is the key: If you are not drinking enough water then you should probably start doing so. Drinking water can help to eliminate toxins from the urinary tract and help to keep UTIs at bay. Having alcohol or caffeine is a strict no-no.

• Urinate from time to time: It is not advisable to hold on to your pee as it can set the stage for bacteria to develop and cause a UTI.

• Stick to safe sex practices: It will be imperative for you to empty the bladder soon after intercourse to avoid the development of bacteria which leads to a UTI.

• Avoid chemical products down there: It is a known fact that douching, or using sprays, powders, or deodorants that contain harmful ingredients can cause irritation, pain, and a burning sensation down there. So, do not use these products when it comes to the vagina. It is better to use products only after the doctor’s advice.

• Wipe yourself from front to back to stop the bacteria from spreading to your vagina or urethra. You need to wear skin-friendly undergarments made of a breathable fabric such as cotton. Do not wear jeans as it will hamper blood circulation and lead to bacterial growth causing a UTI.

• Do not forget probiotics: You must eat fermented foods and probiotic supplements which encourage the formation of good gut bacteria and prevent a UTI. Try to follow these tips and take utmost care of your overall well-being.

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