What Causes Bladder Infections
What Causes Bladder Infections?
Bladder infections are caused by bacteria overgrowth in your urinary tract. This can be anywhere along the urinary tract from the urethra (urine exit - urethritis), the bladder (urine storage bag - cystitis), to higher up in your kidneys (pyelonephritis). Because the the bladder exit is closer to the anus in females, this proximity causes bladder infections to be more common in females. Bladder infections are commonly caused by bacteria reaching the bladder conduit system from the bum while wiping away stool, or transfer during sex. The most common microbe which causes bladder infections is E.coli which is found in intestinal stool.
What Causes Bladder Infections - Symptoms
- Burning when you pee.
- Frequent small urination due to irritation of your bladder.
- Feeling you must go right away when you feel the urge to pee.
- Foul odor and cloudy urine.
- Blood in your urine turning it reddish
- Pain just above your pubic bone from the bladder. If pain is also in your loins - sides or mid back - the infection may have reached up to your kidneys i.e. pyelonephritis - this is the most serious of bladder infection symptoms.
What Causes Bladder Infections - Treatments
- Drink more water. Why drink more water for a bladder infection? Drinking more water helps flushes out the annoying bacteria from your bladder .
- Urinary antibiotics. These tablets for 3 to 7 days kill bacteria just like they would for a strep throat or any other bacterial infection.
- Bladder antispasmodics are sometimes used to reduce urinary burning and urgency for comfort while taking antibiotics.
- A glass of cranberry juice each day has been found in studies to reduce bladder infection frequency by making the bladder difficult for bacteria to stick to.
- Naturopaths may suggest daily Lactobacillus. This friendly yogurt culture bacteria can compete with bad bacteria for living space reducing bladder infection frequency and/or severity. It can be taken by eating probiotic yogurt each day or from capsules of the bacteria.
Emergency Bladder Infection Treatment
- For typical bladder infections antibiotics taken by mouth are sufficient.
- If the infection reaches further up to your kidneys with constitutional symptoms it can become an emergency requiring intravenous antibiotic treatment.
Bladder Sex Infection Treatment
- Frictional irritation from sex in some women can lead to repeated bladder infections after each intercourse. This can be treated by post-coital - after sex - short 1-3 day courses of oral antibiotics kept at home.
- This form of bladder infection is associated with sex or public pool use. Treatment is identical as for other forms of bladder infection.