If you have incontinence you have higher risks of getting UTIs

What You Should Know About Urinary Tract Infections

Urinary tract infections, or UTIs, are one of the world’s most common infections. Increasingly, they also are resistant to antibiotic treatments. Here’s what you should know.

What can I do to avoid getting UTIs?

Women and those suffering from urinary incontinence are more susceptible to UTIs, as they are commonly known, because of the way these germs infect: They often travel through fecal residue from the rectum to the urethra; this can happen through poor bathroom hygiene or open skin irritations. Even taking great care does not make UTIs entirely avoidable.

  • Change incontinence pads/underwear as soon as they are wet to avoid skin irritations and bacterial infections.
  • Wash the area with warm water or use wipes after each leakage.
  • Use incontinence products with rapid absorption to draw urine away from the skin. Look at getting these products delivered from Freezya.com.
  • Less dampness means less risk of skin irritation – particularly if your loved one has to sit or lie down for long periods due to disability or injury.
  • Remove used incontinence products from front to back.
  • Wipe from front to back, to avoid transferring bacteria to the urinary tract.
  • Drink sufficient fluids throughout the day (preferably water).
  • Cut down on caffeinated drinks (such as coffee and tea) and carbonated beverages as these

How often are UTIs resistant and what can be done about them?

The majority of urinary tract infections are now resistant to one or more antibiotics. The drug ampicillin, once a common treatment, has been largely abandoned because most UTIs are now resistant to it.

In a recent NY Times article, researchers discussed the use of two primary drugs to fight UTIs. The two drugs that are the most recommended for uncomplicated UTIs are nitrofurantoin, sold as Macrobid, and trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole, sold as Bactrim or Septra. Both require a prescription, with doses and time courses that vary with the medication. But there has been growing resistance to Bactrim.

 Does cranberry juice help?

Science doesn’t back up the healing power of such remedies. However, they might appear to work because many UTIs will clear up on their own, after a few days as the body fights them off on its own. In other cases, the symptoms may, in fact, be caused by something else that also goes away on its own. None-the-less, for incontinence sufferers, keeping hydrated throughout the day, with water, is the best bet.

In elderly people UTI symptoms can be confusing

UTI symptoms can be very vague and unclear among people with low immune response and diabetes, as well as in elderly people, especially those with dementia. Symptoms can include general weakness, confusion, nausea, dizziness and increased severity of incontinence. Often these symptoms seem connected to other conditions that are unrelated to a UTI, which makes it difficult to recognize the infection.

It’s important to recognize the earliest signs of a UTI for rapid diagnosis and treatment, particularly for frail elderly people who may show fewer symptoms and suffer more severely. So, stay vigilant and see a doctor if symptoms persist.

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