Urinary Tract Infection
All You Need To Know
A urinary tract infection (UTI) can make urination painful and much too frequent. UTIs are one of the most common female health problems, along with yeast infections. If you’re suffering and need UTI relief now, the Charter Health PC team in Salem, Massachusetts, is here for you. Request your appointment online, or by call the office today.
What is a UTI?
A UTI is an infection somewhere in your urinary tract system. From top to bottom, the urinary tract has four components:
- Kidneys (we have two kidneys)
- Ureters, tubes connecting the two kidneys to the bladder
- The bladder, which collects your urine
- The urethra, the tube leading out of the bladder
Most UTIs affect only the lower two parts of the urinary tract, which are the bladder and urethra.
What are the symptoms of a UTI?
UTIs typically causes one or more of the following symptoms:
- Increased urge to urinate
- Burning pain when you urinate
- Pelvic pain, which may be similar to menstrual cramps in women
- Discolored urine (cloudy, pink, red, or brown urine)
- Unusual urine odor
UTI symptoms often get worse without treatment. Sometimes, a UTI can spread upward from the bladder into one of the kidneys. Patients with a kidney infection are very sick and sometimes need hospitalization.
Am I at risk for UTIs?
Women are at higher risk for UTIs than men. There are also other risk factors for UTIs, including:
- Sexual intercourse with a new partner
- Spermicide use, which can change acidity levels in the vagina
- History of UTIs
- Kidney stones
- Prostate enlargement in men
Age also plays a role as older women and men are more likely to have UTIs.
How are UTIs and yeast infections different?
Although both are uncomfortable infections, they’re actually quite different. A yeast infection, like a UTI, can cause pain while urinating. But, unlike a UTI, yeast infections typically cause intense itchiness and a thick white vaginal discharge. It’s possible to have a UTI and yeast infection at the same time, so if you have symptoms of both, it’s important to get evaluated by a medical professional.
How are UTIs treated?
Antibiotics are generally the best treatment for UTIs. Your Charter Health provider will prescribe oral antibiotics. Although you may start to feel better within just a day or so, it is important to finish the entire course of the antibiotic to ensure the infection is completely cleared.
If you have symptoms of a UTI please call us today, 978-354-4611.