It’s a Friday night and you are at the movies with some friends. Popcorn, check. Drinks, check. Bladder? You make a quick trip to the bathroom before finding your theater. A few minutes later, everyone’s settled in their seats—except for you because nature’s calling a second time. No problem. It’s just the previews right now, anyway.
As you return from your second bathroom break, your friends are starting to give you weird looks, but are kind enough not to say anything. As soon as the movie starts, however, your bladder is knocking on your mind’s door, demanding attention yet again. You haven’t even taken a sip of your jumbo-sized soda, yet! What gives? And why has your belly been so sore, lately?
If you have ever suffered from a Urinary Tract Infection (UTI), then you know that scenario is all too real.
So, what exactly is a UTI, what causes it, and how can we help?
What is a UTI?
Put simply, a UTI is a bacterial infection somewhere along your urinary tract. As far as bacterial infections go, they are pretty common across all age groups and genders. Women, however, have a much higher likelihood (up to ten times more, in fact) of developing one.
There are multiple components to your urinary tract: the urethra, bladder, kidneys, and uterus if you’re a woman. Once the bacteria get into your system through the urethra, there are a few different areas it can infect.
If the infection resides in your urethra, the UTI is called urethritis. If the bacteria spreads and infects your bladder, you have what’s called cystitis. Finally, pyelonephritis is the term for when the bacteria make it to your kidneys and start to do damage there. Kidney infections can be especially dangerous, so it’s important to see your doctor as soon as you suspect that you have a UTI.
Infectious bacteria can enter your urinary tract in several ways. One of the common methods is through sex. This is because all of our organs contain a lot of bacteria that the urethra is exposed to during sex. UTIs can also be caused by STDs such as herpes and chlamydia.
Even non-sexually active people can get a UTI if your urethra comes into contact with bacteria such as in a hot tub or swimming pool. Diabetes, kidney stones, and obesity are a few other conditions that make you more susceptible to UTIs.
The most common symptom of a UTI is frequent trips to the bathroom. A burning sensation when you urinate is another big indicator, as well as pain in your lower stomach and sides. There may also be blood in your urine. It is important to see a doctor as soon as you suspect a UTI as kidney infections are very serious.
Symptoms that a UTI may have spread to your kidneys include all of the above symptoms plus fevers, chills, shaking, and nausea.
Give Us a Call
While UTIs can be embarrassing sometimes, they can also be painful or even dangerous if left untreated. If you think you are suffering from a UTI, give MD HomeCare a call and our mobile doctors can get you taken care of from the comfort of your own home. Don’t let a UTI and frequent restroom breaks interrupt your life or ruin your favorite movie.