An infection of the urinary tract is caused by an increasedamount of bacteria and could take place in any area of the tract, such as thekidneys, or the bladder. Urinary tract infections are most likely to take placein the bladder and are treated easily, while the infection in the kidneys can leadto serious consequences if not properly dealt with and in a timely fashion.Furthermore, the main adverse agent responsible for the urinary tract infections isEscherichia coli, which will reproduce in large quantities and manifest itspresence by causing painful and frequent urination, abdominal pain and gloomy,dark and sometimes bloody urine. A typical urinary tract infection is treated byantibiotics usually prescribed for a period of 2 to 3 weeks, coupled bypainkillers, if required.
Treatment for most urinary infections starts and usuallyends, with antibiotics of various types. A culture test of the urine isperformed to rule out any antibiotics that the bacteria may be resentful towards,but those medications that are based on fluoroquinolone, cephalosporins and the like arein most cases sufficient. A few of the antibiotics often prescribed include amplicillin, Septra, Bactrim and so on. The symptoms disappear within the first coupleof days of treatment, but the patient should not, under any circumstances, stoptaking the medication before the end of the treatment period as advised by adoctor as it can result in the infection coming back or in the development someof the adverse effects of antibiotics. There are a couple of other factors thata doctor will take into consideration when prescribing antibiotics and thoseinclude age, gender, medical history, pregnancy and any possible underlyingmedical conditions. In some instances, a medical professional might recommendwaiting for a few days to see if the body can fight off the infection on itsown, as the frequent taking of antibiotics could result in the bacteriabecoming resistant. In cases that are not severe and the immune system is capableenough, a urinary tract infection can go away on its own. In addition, thereare some mild side effects produced by antibiotics, such as allergies and lossof energy, so if an individual is interested in avoiding thosethere is a possibility that the infection will stop without medications. In thecase of children, antibiotics will most likely be prescribed and the treatmentwill last for 3 days. In addition, if an individual is prone to recurringurinary tract infections, a doctor will recommend a longer course of treatmentwith antibiotics and advise further tests be done to ensure there are nomechanical problems in the tract, or in the performance of the kidneys. Further,if the infection is regularly produced after a sexual intercourse a medicalcare provider will recommend taking a small dosage of antibiotics right after,while for postmenopausal women vaginal estrogen is usually a good solution tostop the infection from coming back. Finally, if a urinary tract infection isso severe that it produces high body temperature, coupled with excruciatingpain in the abdomen, and in many cases inability to eliminate urine, theindividual is advised to go to the hospital for urgent treatment which will endwith a course of antibiotics to be taken from home.
Alternative Treatment Options
There are various treatment options that do not includeprescribed medications and are widely available for patients to try. One suchremedy includes cranberry products, or juice, tea and dried cranberries.Consuming cranberry products has been shown to decrease the symptoms as well as thefrequency with which the urinary tract infection recurs. Cranberry basedproducts have more effect on women than men and children. Also, it should benoted that the effects are individual, and so are the course and the durationof treatment. Anyone who is interested in trying to fight their susceptibilityto urinary tract infections with cranberry products has to try and see how longit would take to get any results and how often the cranberry products need tobe consumed. In most cases, consuming cranberry based products is safe, but itis always a good idea to consult with a nutritionist or a physician. It shouldbe noted that individuals who are taking medications for blood thinning shouldstay away from cranberries. Further, there are other everyday activities thatindividuals prone to urinary tract infections should engage in. It is highlybeneficial to drink plenty of water and urinate frequently to getthe bacteria out of the system. Drinking alcohol, soft drinks, sodas andcoffee produces the opposite effects, as these drinks are too harsh on thebladder and as a result should be avoided. Finally, using a heated pillow or apad to warm up the midsection will sooth the bladder and decrease thediscomfort.