Urinary tract infections (UTIs) must be treated promptly by your doctor. Left untreated, a UTI can be painful and may spread. There are several things you should avoid while you have a UTI in order to prevent worsening of symptoms.
Urinary tract infection (UTI) is one of the most common infections affecting older adults, especially women. If you have a UTI without complications, and you are otherwise in good health, your doctor might prescribe a shorter urinary tract infection treatment, such as a 3-day course of antibiotics. However, treatment type and length will depend on your medical profile and specific symptoms. Additionally, your physician may prescribe pain medication that relieves burning during urination, but pain is usually relieved shortly after beginning the antibiotic treatment. Below is some information to help you know what to do if you have a UTI infection in order to prevent exacerbating your UTI symptoms.
The following things can further irritate your bladder and increase the frequency of sensing an urgent need to urinate. Until your UTI has cleared up, you should:
1. Avoid Foods and Beverages that Can Worsen UTI Symptoms
Avoid consuming foods and beverages that can irritate your bladder or worsen your symptoms, such as:
- Caffeinated coffee
- Caffeinated sodas
- Spicy foods
- Acidic fruits
- Artificial sweeteners
2. Avoid Delay in Going to the Doctor When you Have a UTI
At the first sign of symptoms of a UTI, call your doctor. Attempting to treat a UTI yourself just allows the infection additional time to spread. Putting off getting medical attention for a UTI puts you at risk of serious health complications. Over-the-counter medications can mask pain, but do not kill the bacteria; antibiotics are necessary to eliminate a UTI infection.
3. Avoid Thinking You Can Quit the Prescribed Antibiotics Early
The particular antibiotic prescribed for your type of infection must be in your system for the full length of the period prescribed by your doctor in order to entirely eliminate the threat. Although you will probably start to feel better after just one or two days from the start of the antibiotic treatment, that does not indicate that the antibiotics have completely eliminated the infection.
Avoid Insufficient Water Intake
Depleting your body of water leads to dehydration. When the body is dehydrated, bacteria can grow in the bladder. Additionally, not drinking sufficient amounts of water can keep your medication from penetrating into your kidneys and bladder. Drinking abundant amounts of water flushes the kidneys and bladder, helps deliver the antibiotic to the urinary tract, prevents dehydration, and, additionally, reduces risk of developing kidney stones.
Avoid Delays in Urinating
Do not allow yourself to hold your urine because you think you are too busy to urinate. When you sense the urge to urinate and hold in the urine instead, you can put yourself at risk for major urinary tract issues. Retaining the urine also allows germs that are floating in your bladder to remain there. Emptying the bladder promptly flushes out bacteria.
For more information about UTI symptoms and treatments, or to make an appointment to see an OB/GYN in Little Rock AR, contact us by calling the Woman’s Clinic at (501) 222-4175.