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Why Do I Keep Getting Urinary Tract Infections So Much?

Why Do I Keep Getting Urinary Tract Infections

Many women who acquire a urinary tract infection (UTI) are likely to get another one later in their lifetime. One out of every five women gets recurrent UTIs. Recurrent UTI is defined as two or more confirmed infections in the preceding six to twelve months. They can affect men as well, but they are less common and are usually caused by a blockage in the urinary system.

Typical symptoms include frequent urination, pain during urinating, and lower abdomen pain. This article discusses the causes, prevention, and treatment options for recurrent UTIs.

Symptoms of Recurring UTIs

Recurrent UTIs, including chronic UTI, can result in the following symptoms:

  • An intense, uncontrollable desire to urinate
  • Getting a scorching sensation while you urinate
  • Frequent urination in tiny amounts
  • Cloudy urine
  • A vivid pink, red, or brown-colored urine
  • Urine with a strong smell
  • Pelvic pain, especially in the central parts of the pelvis and about the pubic bone

If the infection spreads up your urinary tract and becomes a kidney infection, it can trigger symptoms such as a high temperature, chills, nausea, vomiting, and pain.

Also read: What Causes Urinary Tract Infections and How Can You Prevent Them?

What Causes Recurring UTIs in Women?

Some common causes of recurring and chronic UTIs in women are described below:

  1. Anatomy/GeneticsDue to their anatomy, females are more prone to UTIs because they have a shorter urethra than males. It’s also close to their vaginal and anal openings, and the bacteria from those places have a greater chance of spreading or being wiped into the urethra. After bacteria enter the urethra, they can easily travel to the bladder nearby and cause an infection.
  2. Being Sexually ActiveBeing sexually active is a UTI risk factor because sexual activity can result in bacteria spreading from your vagina and anus into your urethra. Increased sexual activity, therefore, can cause increased bacterial movement and increase the odds of developing a UTI.
  3. MenopauseUTIs can also occur in older, menopausal women due to a postmenopausal decline in estrogen circulation in their bodies. This lack of estrogen can change the urinary tract, resulting in a heightened risk of developing UTIs.
  4. Certain Medical ConditionsMedical conditions involving urinary retention (where your ability to empty your bladder completely and regularly is impaired) can put you at risk for UTIs. That’s because this condition results in stagnant urine, causing infection-causing bacteria to linger and trigger a UTI. Some such conditions include diabetes, spinal cord injury, and kidney stones blocking the urine flow.

Also read: How to Prevent Unwanted Weight Gain From Menopause

Preventing UTIs

  • Drink plenty of water every day, preferably about 2 to 3 liters.
  • Use a non-spermicide contraception method instead of spermicide.
  • After sexual intercourse, empty your bladder immediately.
  • For postmenopausal women, vaginal estrogen treatment is a viable option.
  • Take the prescribed antibiotics used to treat UTI, as directed by your physician.
  • Opt for wearing cotton undergarments

Some additional steps you could take to prevent getting UTIs to include:

  • If you are feeling the urge to pee, avoid holding it for too long
  • Avoid using gynecologically untested scented products, e.g., sprays, powders, etc.

What Should You Do If You Keep Getting Recurring UTIs?

If you continue to have UTIs, you should consult your primary care doctor at the earliest to manage the condition and prevent it from worsening. After discussing with you, your doctor will either propose therapies or refer you to a urologist.

Request an appointment at MI Express Primary Care today if you are facing any symptoms of UTIs. Our medical team is well-experienced in treating UTIs and can provide a personalized treatment plan for you.

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