UTI General Information

UTI Signs and Symptoms

How do I know I have a UTI? (bladder infection/cystitis)

The most common symptoms of an uncomplicated UTI are:

  • Burning sensation during urination
  • Increased frequency of urination, but often with little urine actually passed
  • An urgent feeling of needing to urinate.

Significant pain in the abdomen of in the lower sides of the back, elevated temperature or fever, and nausea with significant vomiting ARE NOT usual symptoms of an uncomplicated UTI. These symptoms are more frequently associated with a more serious infection involving not only the bladder, but also the kidneys. By taking our online questionnaire, we can help you determine if you might have an uncomplicated UTI or a more serious kidney infection. If you have a kidney infection, we will direct you to your private physician, an emergency room, or a minor emergency clinic for care.

How do I prevent getting a UTI?

  1. Drinking water helps to flush your bladder and urinary tract, so drink plenty of water daily.
  2. Don't hold it when you need to urinate! Women are often guilty of trying to finish a task before they go to the bathroom. Holding urine when you need to go can makes it easier for any bacteria that may be present in your bladder to multiply and develop into a urinary tract infection.
  3. Wipe from front to back after a bowel movement. This is important as it helps prevent bacteria from the anus from spreading and entering the vagina or urethra.
  4. Taking showers instead of baths can help prevent bacteria from entering the urethra and causing a UTI.
  5. Always urinate before and after sexual intercourse to help prevent flush the bladder and urethra of bacteria.
  6. Feminine hygiene sprays and douches, particularly scented douches, can irritate the urethra and possibly lead to a UTI. Avoiding these products will help prevent not only urinary tract infections, but also other infections and irritations that these products may cause. Also avoid using soaps on your vulva or labia that contain harsh perfumes or dyes.
  7. A nutritional route that may help prevent UTIs is increasing your vitamin C intake. Vitamin C increases the acidity level of urine, which in turn helps decrease the number of harmful bacteria that may be present in your urinary tract system. Cranberry juice contains high levels of vitamin C, as do vitamin C supplements.
  8. Always wear panties or underwear that has a cotton crotch. Cotton fabric allows moisture to help dry or escape while other fabrics can trap in moisture, creating a potential breeding ground for bacteria. Bacteria grows rapidly in dark, warm, moist places, so avoid wearing tight clothing that is not breathable in that area.
  9. If you are one of the vast amount of women who suffers from frequent, recurrent urinary tract infections, a change in your position during sexual intercourse may help reduce the number of UTIs that you experience. Changing sexual positions may reduce friction on your urethra and reduce your risk of recurrent UTI.