Women are generally affected more often by urinary tract infections because of their anatomy and the fact that the urethra is closer to the anus. Women also have shorter urethras than men, which makes it easier for bacteria to get into the urinary tract. People with kidney stones, enlarged prostates or urethral strictures are also more susceptible to infection, as the flow of urine is prohibited, forcing pathogens to travel up the urethra instead of out of it with the normal flow of urine. People with catheters may suffer from regular UTIs too.
It is estimated that UTIs are responsible for 7 to 10-million doctors’ visits a year and their symptoms range from pain and discomfort during urination to organ damage and death in some cases. Sexual intercourse can cause a UTI, but there is some medical disagreement as to whether it can be transmitted between partners.
Around 80 per cent of UTIs are caused by E. coli bacteria, which are normally found in the colon. Fungi, like candida, and certain parasites have also been found to cause urinary tract infections.
The symptoms of a UTI depend on your age, gender and the location of the infection. Most people get an overwhelming urge to urinate, and when they try, they experience burning and tingling. The urine is usually cloudy and dark and may even contain traces of blood. It may also have a strong smell. Women usually feel bloated and uncomfortable and may battle to empty their bladders. Men may have similar sensations, but their symptoms can also be accompanied by pain in the rectum, abdomen, penis or testes during urination.
Regular hydration and ensuring you always empty your bladder completely when you urinate can protect you from UTIs to some degree. Urinating before and after sex can also make a difference if you are prone to infections. Las Vegas medical clinics offer immediate treatment and relief, and may be able to help you with a solution to prevent infections from recurring.