Urinary tract infections (UTI) are often more common in women because of their shorter urethra. This makes it easier for bacteria to reach the bladder. Unfortunately, for some women, gaining control over UTIs is a constant struggle. There are simple tactics you can use to reduce the frequency of UTIs.
Consider Your Behaviors
Some daily behaviors can contribute to frequent UTIs. A major problem is holding your urine due to inaccessibility of the bathroom or simply because you delay taking a break. You may need to moderate your intake of fluids and caffeine throughout the day if you work in an environment where you cannot take necessary bathroom breaks. Wearing the appropriate panties is important in minimizing UTIs.
Although panties made from lace or nylon may be attractive, they can be contributing to urinary problems. At minimum, choose panties with a breathable, cotton crotch and ones that do not fit tight against your body. Consider switching to all cotton panties to determine if you notice a difference. If you wear panty liners, change them frequently to avoid keeping any bacteria against the genital area, especially when you have an active infection.
Incorporate Cranberries Or Blueberries
Sugar-free or low-sugar cranberry juice should be incorporated into your diet each day. Make sure that the juice you are drinking contains 100% cranberry juice or as close to pure as you can find. If the tart taste is too much, you can add a packet of sugar substitute, honey, or agave. A small glass once or twice per day may be enough to prevent or minimize UTIs. Cranberry pills can also be helpful to incorporate the benefits of cranberry juice without the extra calories or if you find the taste is unpleasant.
Another alternative is blueberry juice, which is often harder to find. If you would prefer blueberry juice, consider making your own and freezing it in an ice cube tray to preserve it longer. A standard ice cube holds about one ounce of liquid. Once they are frozen, you can portion out a serving into freezer bags to grab and go.
Probiotics can help you achieve a better balance of healthy and unhealthy bacteria throughout your body. Since you likely take antibiotics to help alleviate UTIs, your body may have even fewer good bacteria to help keep away the bad ones. You should always incorporate probiotics in pill form or by eating yogurt with active cultures. Ideally, probiotics should be taken daily to help ward off imbalances between good and bad bacteria, especially when you are taking antibiotics.
Although it is not always possible to prevent recurrent UTIs, it is possible to reduce the frequency. A few changes in your lifestyle and diet may reduce the recurrence of UTIs. For more information, contact Tomas J Friedrich, M.D. or a similar medical professional.