It is National Kidney Awareness Month, so we thought it a good time to explore Urinary Tract Infections, or a UTI. What is a UTI? Urinary tract infections are bacterial infections in the urinary system. They are somewhat common, and usually do not not amount to anything serious if treated early, although left untreated, they can. So what causes a UTI? A urinary tract infection is caused by the bacteria usually living in the gastrointestinal tract. In some cases, sexually transmitted bacteria can also cause infection. In men, such infections are often a sign of other problems, such as prostate disease. In order to identify a urinary tract infection, it is important to pay attention to these 8 signs that you have a UTI.
- A very strong urge to pee immediately and often
- Burning with urination
- Lower abdominal or lower back discomfort
- Only being able to pee out small amounts of urine at a time
- Cloudy or bloody urine
- Unpleasant smelling urine
- Fever or chills
- Rectal pain
If you are suffering from any of the above signs, you may have a UTI. If you think you might have a urinary tract infection, consult a medical professional, and disclose your signs and symptoms. In most cases you will be asked to take a urine test, yet in some cases, you will require other tests as well.
Do both women and men suffer from UTI’s?
Yes. Most people are under the impression that only women suffer from Urinary Tract Infections, but in reality men get them too. In the case of women, they will experience slightly different signs of a UTI than men, in addition to the above signs. Women will sometimes find themselves bloated, or experiencing vaginal discharge. Either of these two symptoms in conjunction with any of the above signs will be an indicator that a woman should seek medical attention. In men, it is more common that they undergo painful ejaculation, penile, testicular and abdominal pain, or penile discharge. If the infection has moved to the kidneys men will feel pain above the kidneys, or get a fever and or begin vomiting.
What will happen if I leave my UTI untreated?
If you have symptoms such as fever, chills, or nausea, it might be a more serious infection. Left untreated, complications can form. Chronic infections may result in urinary strictures, kidney stones, and, rarely, kidney damage or bladder cancer. Rapid advancement of UTIs can lead to dehydration, kidney failure, and death. Pregnant females with untreated UTIs may develop premature delivery and other complications.
If you are experiencing any of the signs of a UTI, AFC Urgent Care Vernon welcomes you with no appointment necessary, to our walk-in clinic. We are located at 179 Talcottville Rd, Vernon, CT 06066 . We are also open 7 days a week Monday-Friday 8am-8pm and Saturday-Sunday 8am-5pm. We are staffed by licensed professionals, and we accept most insurances.