- Personal Health Information & Self-Help
How I Naturally Treated A UTI
Have you ever had a UTI?
Q & A's
1. What is a UTI?
A Urinary Tract Infection is a bacterial infection in the urethra, the tube that urine travels out of the body. UTIs are generally easy to get (and treat! yay!), which is why doctors recommend women wipe from front to back after urinating and to clean up after sex. UTIs can occur in men and boys, but the majority of cases are in women.
2. What are the symptoms of a UTI?
WebMd describes the symptoms as:
- A burning feeling when you urinate
- A frequent or intense urge to urinate, even though little comes out when you do
- Pain or pressure in your back or lower abdomen
- Cloudy, dark, bloody, or strange-smelling urine
- Feeling tired or shaky
- Fever or chills (a sign the infection may have reached your kidneys)
As for me, I got my first UTI (I've only had 2) when I was 27 years old. The symptoms included the burning sensation when I peed, an itchy and warm feeling in general, my vulva felt like it was engorged and swollen, and I felt like I constantly had to pee but when I did very little came out. I always have lower back pain, but I did not experience any of the other symptoms.
3. How do I KNOW I have a UTI? What if it's a yeast infection.
I just knew. I looked up the symptoms and assumed I was right (which I do not recommend, but you know your body best). I've only had a yeast infection once, about ten years prior, and it was much different. A yeast infection will produce a cottage-cheese-like discharge and doesn't have the pressure or burning. WebMd suggests you head to the doctor to have your urine tested and they will prescribe you antibiotics.
4. What if I don't treat a UTI?
Please, please, please get it treated. I chose to educate myself and treat it at home because I don't like to take antibiotics due to antibiotic resistance. An untreated UTI can quickly lead to kidney issues, including kidney failure. And you need your kidneys!
5. What is antibiotic resistance?
I am SO glad you asked. I actually did not know about antibiotic resistance until a few years ago, when I decided to enter a scholarship competition for making an infograph on it. Basically, our bodies develop a resistance to antibiotics the more we use them, making it harder to treat illnesses when we're older. They just stop working because we are immune to them. That is why it is SO important that when your doctor prescribes an antibiotic, you ask them if it's absolutely necessary and request other alternatives first.
We Should Know Our Body Parts
How have you treated a UTI in the past?
So, how did YOU do it?
Disclaimer: I am not a medical doctor and this Hub in no way should replace the advice given by your healthcare professional! If you choose to follow this treatment, I assume no liability and you try it at your own risk.
1. Fluids: Bet you guessed that one, right? Drink TONS of water. I like to put berries in my water so it's not just water all day. What else? I found conflicting information regarding citrus water. Some say the acid will further irritate your urethra, others say it's helpful. I drank one glass of lemon water. When it comes to Cranberry juice (an acid), there is no evidence to show it helps, but I drank a glass anyway. I also drank various herbal teas (without sugar, try to stay away from sweets and caffeine though).
2. Foods: You should eat foods that are rich in nutrients to enhance your alkaline density. These are poultry, fish, nuts, leafy greens, etc. I had chicken and salad (without dressing) for dinner. Yogurt with probiotics (like plain or vanilla Greek yogurt with low sugar) are also a good choice. I'm not a yogurt person, but I did eat a large cup of it with granola.
3. Vitamins: I took extra vitamin C and made sure I took my multivitamin. Oral birth control can be a cause of UTIs so nix that for now and let your OBGYN know later so they can adjust your medications.
That can't be it! I'm so uncomfortable!
Okay, okay. It's the burning, throbbing, always peeing part that sucks the most, right? Here's what I did:
1. Water: Yay for water again! I put water in a plastic bottle and stuck it in the microwave for 30 seconds. I wrapped it in a clean wash cloth and held it on my vulva, between my legs. This helped IMMENSELY. I was fortunate enough to be able to stay home from work and activities, though. Holding a hot water bottle to your girly parts is probably frowned upon at most jobs.
2. Clothing: I did not wear underwear, and I either wore loose, cotton PJ pants, or a long t-shirt. If you must don the chonies, wear granny panties, you know, sensible cotton panties that breathe.
3. Pee: Seems easy enough, right? Except when you have a UTI you always feel like you have to pee and nothing comes out. I get it. But the more you pee, the more bacteria is able to be released, and the quicker you heal. I made sure to pee at least twice an hour. When you do go, lean forward when you feel like you're about to finish to completely empty your bladder (a trick I learned when I was pregnant).
But how long do I have to do this for?
I noticed something different the night before the actual onset of the UTI. I was itchy and raw down there. In the middle of the night I got up more than usual to pee. By the morning, I had all the symptoms. I spent an hour or so researching it to see if I really needed to go to the doctor. I decided I would try home remedies for 24 hours and head over to urgent care if it didn't let up by the morning. Thank goodness it did. By the next day, I was able to get up and move around (and wear pants) in between warm water bottle treatments. It took a total of 48 hours to completely dissipate. GO TO THE DOCTOR RIGHT AWAY IF YOU HAVE FEVER/CHILLS or BLOOD IN YOUR URINE.
How to Get Rid of a UTI | home remedies for uti | urinary tract infection
Do's and Dont's
Loose-fitting, cotton clothes
100% Cranberry Juice
Nutrient rich foods
Vitamin A, C, and Zinc
Oral birth control
Who do you think you are?!
Hi, I'm Britney Kay.
The author of this Hub is a life-long resident of a small desert town in Southern California. She earned an AA in Liberal Studies from Victor Valley College and then a BA in Social Work from California State University Los Angeles. She then obtained a substitute teaching credential and worked in a nonpublic school for children with autism spectrum disorders and emotional disturbance diagnoses. She then spent one year working for Children and Family services as both an intake and carrier worker. She attended the University of Denver in Colorado after earning $20,000 in scholarships and grants. She received an MA in Social Work, with a concentration on Children and Youth: Risks and Healthy Development and a master's level certificate in Animal-Assisted Social Work. Britney currently resides in Southern California with her mother, son, younger sister, brother-in-law, partner, and their six cats and dogs.