Home Remedies for UTI
Urinary Tract Infection, also referred to as UTI is the second most common type of infection in the body. It affects millions of people every year and is a serious health problem. Women are more prone to UTI than men with lesser frequency in children; though reason is unknown. More common occurrence in women is associated with the possibility of a short urethra allowing easy access for the bacteria to the bladder. UTI can be serious health condition if is long standing. Chronic UTI due to frequent urinary infections may require proper treatment due to relapse of this health condition.
It is important to treat UTI in its initial stages because with recurrent urinary tract infections, it can spread to the bladder and kidney.
High Risk for developing UTI
- Holding the urge to urinate or waiting for too long before you pass urine can breed bacteria.
- There is a high risk for contracting UTI due to poor hygiene For e.g. Use of public toilet seats such as in movie theatres which may have been infected after a person with UTI uses it. Hence, it is important to wipe the toilet seat with a tissue before use of public loos.
- Critically ill patients or the elderly who lose bladder control require use of catheters (tubes placed in urethra or bladder) for long time period or even life long. Bacteria on the catheter can cause bladder infection. Hence special care should be taken to keep the catheter clean.
- An abnormality in the urinary tract that obstructs urine flow. For e.g. Conditions like enlarged prostate gland in men, kidney stone
- Any illness in which the immune system is compromised.
- Multiple sex partners is a high risk factor. Sexual intercourse with one partner could also trigger uti in some women though reason is unclear. Based on various researches it is seen that women who use diaphragm as a birth control method are more likely to develop a UTI than women who use other methods for birth control. Also, condoms with spermicidal foam encourage growth of E. coli bacteria in the vagina.
- UTI in pregnancy: The risk for developing UTI in a pregnant woman is no more than any other woman. But in pregnancy, UTI is likely to develop into kidney infection so adequate care needs to be taken.
- Need to pass urine frequently and with urgency
- May complain of difficulty in passing urine and small quantity of urine being passed. Urine itself may be cloudy or milky, with or without presence of blood – thus, giving a reddish color to the urine.
- May be pain and burning sensation in bladder or urethra while urinating
- Feel exhausted, tired and shaky
- Fever is less likely but if present is likely to cause kidney infection. Kidney infection is also associated with symptoms of nausea, vomiting, back pain and pain below ribs.
Unlike adults, children with UTI have no symptoms of urinary tract infection other than fever.
UTI Home Remedies
Diet for UTI
There are no specific dietary restrictions for urinary tract infections. Adequate fluid intake is essential.
- The best UTI home remedy is to make sure you drink plenty of water. It is a good idea to drink from measured quantities of water bottles to ensure that you are surely drinking enough.
- Cranberry juice has antibiotic properties and is known to be good for urinary tract infections. Drink at least 16 oz (about 480 ml) a day for a therapeutic effect.
- Drinking fruit juices is a good idea if weight gain is not an issue.
Chronic UTI Treatment: Best Natural Cures
Home Remedies for UTI
The urine becomes acidic hence it is important to keep the PH alkaline.
Some herbs are found to be beneficial to treat UTI. These can be used either as a dry herb or in tincture form in herbal teas –
- Goldenseal root
- Uva Ursi
- Cleavers (Galium aparine)
- Marshmallow root (Althea officinalis)
- Corn silk (Zea Mays)
- Horsetail (Equisetum arvense)
- Usnea Lichen
Check with a naturopathic physician on dosage information and how to use the herbs.
Some homeopathic remedies for UTI are suggested as small pellets or homeopathic liquid form are – Cantharis, Apis mellifica, Staphysagria, Sarsasparilla
These should not be taken without consulting a qualified homeopathic doctor
More Tips for Dealing with UTI
The most common medical treatment for UTI is to start on antibiotic therapy based on your doctor’s prescription. Yet there are some simple tips you can get relief from UTI symptoms.
- Do not resist the urge to urinate, do not hold urine but go as soon as you feel the urge.
- Wipe with a soft tissue from the front to the back. This does not allow the bacteria around the anus to enter the vagina or urethra.
- Wear comfortable loose fitting clothes especially undergarments.
- It is a good idea to shower. Do not take tub bath.
- Clean the genital area before having intercourse.
- Avoid using scented panty liners or sprays and perfumed douches on the genital area.