One of the most common diagnoses that a doctor tells his or her patients is that they have developed a urinary tract infection (also known as a UTI). Although men suffer from this condition, more than eight million women per year are in need of treatment of a UTI and 20% of these lucky ladies will battle a second one. Luckily, home remedies for UTI can ease some of the symptoms and even help prevent a reoccurrence from taking place.
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What is UTI?
A urinary tract infection starts in the urinary system, which is made up of kidneys, ureters, bladder and urethra. Unfortunately, any part of your urinary system can become infected. The majority of infections have infiltrated the lower urinary tract, which is where you’ll find the bladder and urethra.
Causes and Symptoms
The kidneys, ureters, bladder and urethra are responsible for removing waste from the body. Typically, a urinary tract infection develops when bacteria enters the urinary tract through the urethra and starts to multiply in the bladder. The result is an infection in the urinary tract.
For example, urinary tract infections in women typically involve the bladder and urethra. The female anatomy and sexual intercourse play a significant role with urinary tract infections in women. Urethritis is an infection of the urethra, which occurs when gastrointestinal bacteria travels from the anus to the urethra.Cystitis is an infection of the bladder caused by E. coli – a type of bacteria commonly found in the gastrointestinal tract .
Not all urinary tract infections come with signs and symptoms. When indicators of the infection do emerge, a patient may experience cloudy urine, strong-smelling urine, bright pink or cola colored urine (due to the presence of blood), burning sensations during urination, the urge to frequently urinate, rectal pain in men, and pelvic pain in women.
UTI Home Remedies
Being able to treat your urinary tract infection within the comforts of your own home is a lifesaver for many patients trying to save money and avoid prescription drugs. From fruit juices to the kind of clothing you wear, you should become familiar with the following home remedies for UTI:
An enzyme found in pineapples called bromelain has proven helpful for fighting a urinary tract infection. Start by eating at least one cup of pineapple per day.
b) Cotton Underclothing:
Opt for cotton underclothing, which encourages a breathable environment for a patient battling a urinary tract infection. Women should wear cotton panties or cotton-lined pantyhose, while men should slip into comfortable cotton boxers.
c) Loose Clothing:
Wear loose fitting clothing to encourage the healing process. Wearing clothes that are too tight provides an environment agreeable to the infection.
d) Avoid Alcohol:
Avoid further irritation of your bladder during a urinary tract infection by not drinking alcohol.
e) Cut Back on Caffeine:
Sodas with caffeine, coffee, and tea contain components that irritate the bladder, which can adversely affect your UTI.
f) Plenty of Water:
Flush out the unwanted substances associated with your infection by drinking plenty of water, which also promotes a healthy flow of urine. The cleansing effect of water also helps remove bacteria from your body.
g) Cranberry Juice:
Cranberry juice combats urinary tract infection bacteria by preventing it from sticking to the walls of your bladder. Avoid processed cranberry juice and opt for the real deal. Some people will also drink a mix of water and cranberry concentrate. At the first signs of infection, fill up on the juice – drinking at least 16 ounces per day.
Blueberries come from the same plant family as cranberries and have shown promising effects against the bacteria associated with a urinary tract infection. One study suggested that blueberry juice had the power to prevent a UTI. You can add fresh blueberries to your cereal or oatmeal, as well as puree the berries for a morning smoothie.
i) Cucumber Juice:
Some people have drunk the juice that comes from cucumbers as a way to treat their bladder infection.
j) Apple Cider Vinegar:
Add two teaspoons of natural apple cider vinegar to a glass of water, and drink six times per day.
k) Baking Soda:
Add 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda to eight ounces of water in a glass and drink at the first signs of a UTI. Baking soda helps balance out the acid-base ratio in your system to combat the effects of acidic urine. The neutralizing effect of baking soda can also speed up your recovery time.
Use equal amounts of sandalwood, bergamot, tea tree, frankincense and juniper essential oils as a massage rub for a urinary tract infection. After mixing all of the ingredients together, rub the oils across your bladder and massage into the skin. Some people have experienced less intense symptoms after three to four days of using this home remedy.
m) Vitamin C:
Preventing bacterial growth associated with an acidic environment in the bladder and the urinary tract, vitamin C can be used as a home remedy for this type of infection. In addition to taking a supplement or increasing citrus fruits in your diet, eat other fruits and vegetables, as well as drink milk to maintain alkaline content in your urine.
n) Heating Pad:
Place a heating pad on the lower part of your stomach to ease the pain associated with a urinary tract infection.