Urinary Tract and Bladder Infections


Most bladder infections are caused by the bacteria Escherichia Coli, often called E Coli, which is normally found in the intestines.The E Coli sticks to the wall of the bladder causing inflammation. This inflammation is called cystitis.


Women are more likely than men to suffer from bladder infections due to the closeness of the anus to the urethra and vagina. This allows the bacteria to gain access to the bladder through the urethra.


Bladder infections can also be caused by antibiotics and analgesics destroying the "friendly" bacteria in our bodies. Be sure to take acidophilus to replace these friendly bacteria when taking these medications.


Symptoms may include

  • Frequent and painful urination
  • Urgent need to empty bladder - bladder may never seem empty
  • Urine may be cloudy and have strong, unpleasant odor
  • Children may have pain in the lower abdomen and experience a burning sensation when urinating
  • If you see blood in your urine this could indicate a more serious condition and medical attention should be sought.

How to avoid Bladder Infections

  • Don't put off emptying the bladder
  • Keep genital area clean - wipe from front to back when emptying bladder or bowel. Douches, hygiene sprays and bubble baths are not recommended.
  • Women should empty bladder before and after intercourse
  • Women should wear white cotton underwear
  • Drink plenty of liquids - cranberry juice is especially good, make sure it is a good quality pure juice with no added sugars
  • If you don't like the taste of cranberry juice you can take concentrated cranberry juice extract capsules twice a day - but drink plenty of fluids too.
  • Limit your consumption of coffee, caffeine, chocolate, carbonated sodas and alcohol - when you have a bladder infection these should be avoided altogether.
  • Celery, watermelon and parsley are natural diuretics and they should be included in your diet.
  • When taking antibiotics you should take acidophilus tablets or capsules to replace friendly bacteria

What can help if you have a bladder infection
All of the above, plus

  • Drink pure unsweetened cranberry juice or try cranberry capsules. Drink plenty of water.
  • Acidophilus will help restore your bodies friendly bacteria
  • Vitamin C and Echinacea help to strengthen the immune system. Vitamin C also has an antibacterial effect by making urine more acid.
  • Garlic acts as a natural antibiotic and can be helpful
  • Hot Sitz baths can help relieve the pain of cystitis. Adding a cup of vinegar or a couple of crushed garlic cloves or garlic juice can also be helpful.

Disclaimer: The information presented is for information purposes only. It is based on scientific studies or traditional usage. Consult a health care professional before using supplements or making any changes in prescribed medications. Information and statements regarding dietary supplements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease