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What are the Most Common Symptoms of Bladder Infections in Women?

The most common symptoms of bladder infections in women include urinary hesitancy, urgency, and burning. In addition, bladder pressure, back pain, blood in the urine, and chills are frequently experienced. When bacteria reaches the urethra, infection can quickly develop. If symptoms are not treated early, fever and kidney problems may occur. Bladder infections in women are common and can occur as a result of sexual intercourse, tight clothing, or improper hygiene habits.

Treatment for bladder infections in women includes taking oral antibiotics, increasing fluid intake, drinking cranberry juice, and taking pain relievers. Antibiotics are usually sulfa based and can quickly relieve symptoms in as little as a day. In addition, medications that dull urinary pain are often prescribed, however, they are not effective in treating the infection itself. The dye in these drugs cause the urine to turn bright orange, so women should not worry when they see this happening.

Typically, increasing in fluid intake, especially water, can be helpful when treating bladder infections in women. Drinking plenty of water flushes out toxins and makes urination less difficult. When a bladder infection is present, women should avoid caffeinated and alcoholic beverages. In addition, spicy or hot foods should also be avoided because they can irritate the urinary tract.

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If prompt treatment with antibiotics is not instituted, a bladder infection can affect the kidneys, not only promoting a kidney infection, but also promoting kidney damage. Symptoms of kidney damage include decrease in urinary output, fatigue, nausea, and abnormal blood tests. In addition, back pain and swelling of the extremities and face can also indicate kidney damage.

Physicians should remind women, especially those prone to bladder infections, to wipe from front to back after using the restroom and to urinate after sexual relations. Both these habits discourage bacteria from migrating into the urinary tract, reducing the risk of infection. Since bladder infections in women are so common, most are already aware of the preventative measures they need to take, however, gentle reminders from the health care provider can prove beneficial.

When bladder infections in women are accompanied by shaking chills, vomiting, fever, or profound weakness, the physician needs to be immediately notified. The patient might need hospitalization for intravenous fluid replacement or antibiotic therapy. Bladder infections can cause organ damage if not managed, so treating them quickly can often prevent complications. Anti-inflammatory medications, warm baths, and application of a heating pad are often effective in treating associated abdominal and pelvic discomfort of a UTI.

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