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How do I Choose the Best Urinary Tract Infection Treatment?

Tricia Christensen
Updated May 17, 2024
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The best urinary tract infection treatment (UTI) is to follow a physician's recommended medical treatment. This may seem obvious, but there are many proposed cures available that don’t suggest this as an option. Any form of urinary tract infection has the potential to spread or worsen, often without accompanying warning symptoms. In worse case scenarios, UTI sufferers can develop bladder or kidney stones that are extremely painful. If a person who is ill with a UTI is unwilling to at first try the gold standard treatment of antibiotics, at least with the guidance of a physician, other methods can be attempted and ongoing urine tests can determine whether they’re effectively solving the problem or if more aggressive measures are warranted.

Any urinary tract infection treatment should begin with an appropriate diagnosis, usually via a urinalysis test that examines the urine for infective agents. Sometimes the symptoms of UTI are comparable to symptoms of other conditions like yeast infection, bacterial, vaginal, or penile infections, or a variety of sexually transmitted diseases. Ruling out other conditions is vital to obtaining the best treatment.

If a UTI is discovered and patients want to at first avoid antibiotics, they might look to some of the many alternative treatments that have shown some success. One of the best at home urinary tract infection treatments is increasing fluid intake to at least eight to 12 glasses of water a day, which may help flush the urinary tract of extra bacteria.

Some swear by drinking certain juices like cranberry juice, but it should not contain added sugar, as this might exacerbate the infection. It’s also important to avoid any foods with diuretic or dehydrating properties such as coffee, black or green tea, or caffeinated sodas. Avoiding sugar intake in general is considered beneficial.

Certain behaviors seem to elevate risk of a UTI. Urinary tract infection treatment could include identifying these behaviors and changing them. Smokers may suffer fewer UTIs if they quit, and drinkers may want to sharply reduce alcohol intake. Some women find they get UTIs after intercourse, or are more prone to them when they use colored toilet paper, of fragranced feminine products. There are specific steps which may reduce UTI incidence occurring after sex and avoidance of any products that cause irritation is advised.

Avoidance doesn’t always reduce the likelihood that someone will need other urinary tract infection treatment. Many times UTI sufferers have a severe enough infection that they will require antibiotics. A lot of doctors advocate giving up any causal behaviors and following some of home remedies at the same time that antibiotics are given.

There are additionally some supportive urinary tract infection treatment options. Discomfort can be addressed with over the counter pain medicines and/or with options like using a heating pad or hot water bottle, which may be particularly helpful for kidney pain. Getting rest can also help the body heal from infection, and it’s frequently advised so that UTI sufferers can recover more quickly.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Tricia Christensen
By Tricia Christensen
With a Literature degree from Sonoma State University and years of experience as a WiseGeek contributor, Tricia Christensen is based in Northern California and brings a wealth of knowledge and passion to her writing. Her wide-ranging interests include reading, writing, medicine, art, film, history, politics, ethics, and religion, all of which she incorporates into her informative articles. Tricia is currently working on her first novel.
Discussion Comments
By Spotiche5 — On Sep 01, 2014

A few years ago I developed urinary tract infection symptoms on a Friday evening, and couldn't get a hold of my doctor until Monday. I began drinking pure cranberry juice and plenty of water.When the weekend was over, my symptoms were also gone.

Though you should always have suspicious symptoms evaluated by a doctor, plenty of fluids and cranberry juice is great for your urinary tract system. Together, they may help prevent or even cure a urinary tract infection.

By Heavanet — On Sep 01, 2014

If you do have to take an antibiotic for a yeast infection, it is important to finish every dose in the prescription your doctor gives you. If you don't, you could risk having the infection flare up again.

It is also a good idea to eat plenty of yogurt while you are being treated with an antibiotic for urinary tract infection symptoms. Since yogurt contains live cultures that fight off yeast, it will help to replenish the good bacteria in your system that the antibiotic will also kill.

Tricia Christensen
Tricia Christensen
With a Literature degree from Sonoma State University and years of experience as a WiseGeek contributor, Tricia...
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