Urinary tract infections: the causes and treatments…

Urinary tract infections: the causes and treatments…

Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are common in women, with one in two women experiencing a UTI in their lifespan and nearly one in three women requiring treatment for a UTI before the age of 24.1 This article will look at what the causes are, treatment options and some interesting UTI facts…

The causes of UTIs:

UTIs are caused when bacteria enters the urinary tract, where it can multiply and cause an infection. Women are more susceptible to UTIs due to their anatomy, however sexual activity, menopause, or a decreased immune system are just some of the other factors that can make you prone to a UTI.

There are several bacteria types that typically cause infections, including E.coli, Mycoplasma and Chlamydia.

How to treat a UTI:

Mild symptoms can be treated by:

  • Taking a urinary alkalinising agent to relieve symptoms when passing urine, this can be purchased over the counter at your pharmacy.
  • Drinking plenty of fluids.

 

If you’re experiencing pain, consult your doctor for urine checks and treatment. Antibiotics may be prescribed to clear the infection. In case of serious symptoms such as high temperature (38°C or above), shivering, nausea and/or vomiting, diarrhoea or worsening pain in your abdomen, pelvis or back consult your doctor immediately.

Those who experience recurring UTIs may be referred to a specialist for ongoing treatment.

Interesting UTI Facts

  • Having diabetes means you’re more likely to experience a UTI due to high glucose levels in your urine.
  • The risk of UTIs increases with age.
  • Babies and children are at risk of UTIs, and if present the infection can be a sign of urinary reflux.
  • Men also experience UTIs with one in 20 being affected in their lifetime.

 

  1. Kidney Health Australia. Urinary Tract Infections