Bladder infections are more common in women than men for many reasons. It is believed that about 20 women in 100 will get bladder infection at least once in her lifetime. This may perhaps be due to the short urethra and proximity to the bladder for the bacteria. It can easily make its way into the bladder through urethra and travel through the connecting passage which is less than 2 inches long.
E.Coli is the name of the bacteria that causes bladder infection both in men and women. Women receive this infectious bacterium after sexual intercourse with her partner. For some women, it can be due to the diaphragm or birth control metal that causes infection. Pregnant women are more prone for bladder infection than others. Use of condoms and spermicides potentially increase the risk of infection.
The bladder gets inflamed and develops swelling due to infection. Older women are more prone to bladder infection.
- Frequent urge to pass urine
- Burning pain when urinating
- Having a strong odor with urine
- Bladder spasm
These are some of the common symptoms in women. But in elderly women, there may be slight mental confusion if the infection becomes severe. For some there can be fever, chills, pain in the abdomen and blood with urine.
If the infection is mild, then it can be treated easily by home remedies. You can try home remedies to control itching and burning sensation by drinking plenty of liquids. But if the symptoms persist for more than 24 hours, you need to consult your doctor. You can try using anesthetic cream containing pyridium.
Antibiotics are given for treating bladder infection. You need to continue taking medicines for at least a week till the infection is fully cured. Your doctor will identify the underlying cause and start treating it first. In case, the bladder is affected due to kidney problem, then it may take long time for getting treated. For HIV patients, it may take even longer.
Women with bladder infection should restrict sexual activity till the infection is completely cured; failing which she would transmit the infection to her partner. Some doctors prescribe estrogen hormone therapy for treating women who are in postmenstrual stage.
In rare case, surgery is done when there is blockage in the urinary tract.
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You need to follow good hygiene. Avoid having sex with multiple partners. Urinate regularly and do not delay when your bladder is full. Wear loose cotton clothes which dissipate heat. Drink plenty of water. Some people take Cranberry juice for controlling infection. Don’t change soaps and cosmetics often. Wipe off your vaginal area front to back after urinating to prevent bacteria from entering into the urethra.