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The Escherichia coli that causes the bladder infection is treated by antibiotics, but there are other medications available over-the-counter that can provide relief for the symptoms associated with the bladder infection.2
WHAT IS THE URINARY TRACT?Back to top
The kidneys filter your blood, removing wastes and extra water. The urine travels from the kidneys down two narrow tubes called ureters. The urine is then stored in the bladder and emptied through the urethra, a tube at the bottom of the bladder.3
WHO IS LIKELY TO SUFFER FROM URINARY TRACT INFECTIONS (UTIs) SUCH AS BLADDER INFECTIONS?Back to top
WHAT ARE THE SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS? 4,5Back to top
- A burning sensation or pain during urination
- Pain, discomfort or cramps in the lower belly
- A frequent and intense urge to urinate
- Urine that looks cloudy, dark or bloody or has a foul smell
HOW SERIOUS IS A BLADDER INFECTION?Back to top
However for many women, bladder infections are a painful art of life.6
WHAT TREATMENTS ARE AVAILABLE?Back to top
Antispasmodic drugs such as flavoxate, and anticholinergic agents such as oxybutynin, are often used to relieve symptoms such as the need to go urgently, or more often. These medicines relieve these symptoms by relieving the spasm in the urinary tract.7
5 Easy Steps to prevent UTIsBack to top
Wipe from front to back after a bowel movement or after urinating.
Drink plenty of fluids, especially water.
Empty your bladder as soon as you feel the urge to urinate.
Wear cotton underwear and loosefitting clothes so that area around the urethra is kept dry.
Empty your bladder soon after intercourse to flush away bacteria that may have entered the urethra.
- Bladder control: Lifestyle strategies ease problems. Mayo Clinic [online] 18 July 2017 [cited 17 Sept 2019]; Available from URL: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases- conditions/urinary-incontinence/in-depth/bladder-controlproblem/
- Imam TH. Bladder Infection (Cystitis). Merck Manual, Consumer Version [online] 2018 July [cited 2019 Sept 17]; Available from URL: https://www.merckmanuals.com/home/ kidney-and-urinary-tract-disorders/urinary-tractinfections-
- What I need to know about Urinary Tract Infections National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Information Clearinghouse. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases [Online] 2011 Dec. [cited 2019 Sept
17]; Available from URL: https://www.atkinsonurology.com/Pubs/NIDDK/uti_ez.pdf.
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Overactive Bladder (OAB)
WHAT IS OVERACTIVE BLADDER? Overactive bladder (OAB) is an uncomfortable feeling of urgently needing to pass urine. This feeling of urgency occurs frequently throughout the day and at night. Sometimes it is difficult to hold the urine in, which causes leaking and incontinence.1