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Know The Symptoms of Your Urinary Tract Infection

Woman experiencing a UTI infection

Urinary tract infections happen to all of us at one point or another. Half of all women may experience a urinary tract infection once in their life. This infection often takes place throughout the kidneys, bladder, urethra, and ureter, and not everyone will get the same symptoms. Knowing the signs of a UTI early can help you get treatment early and lead to a rapid recovery. As a regular occurrence, we’re here to help lower your discomfort by helping you understand what causes UTIs, how good hygiene can help you care for your urinary tract, and learn better ways to prevent UTIs from reoccurring.

Understanding Symptoms of a Urinary Tract Infection

Urinary tract infections are often caused by numerous factors, and dehydration isn’t always the cause. UTI’s develop from bacteria that enter the urethra, and these strains of bacteria can come from either the skin or the rectum. Women are often more prone to UTIs due to shorter urethras that are closer to the rectum, which can cause bacteria to enter the urinary tract. Most urinary tract infections exhibit mild symptoms, but many of these symptoms are hard to miss due to the pain and burning sensation that develops. This level of discomfort often occurs during urination and exists in the urinary tract until your immune system’s ability to remove the bacterial infection throughout the urinary system.

When it comes to recognizing a UTI, these symptoms often exist, including:

  • Frequent Urination: This sensation often occurs even when the bladder is barely full. Frequent urination often occurs as the result of inflammation throughout the urethra and bladder, as the inflammation impacts the receptors that allow us to know when we need to urinate.
  • Pain/Burning: The urinary tract lining becoming irritated and inflamed will often cause pain and a burning sensation during urination.
  • Cloudy Urine: As your immune system attempts to fight off the infection, white blood cells will enter the urine, causing it to become cloudy.
  • Tinted Urine: Urine that appears pink, brown, or red often indicates signs of a more severe urinary tract infection.
  • Pelvic Pressure: Pelvic pressure can come from inflammation throughout the kidneys and urethra, causing sensations similar to bloating.
  • Foul Odor: The bacteria throughout the urinary tract can also cause foul odors to occur from your urine.

Factors that often lead to UTIs include poor hygiene, dehydration, and having intercourse with a new partner. Some women will experience asymptomatic UTIs, meaning that while the bacteria’s present in the urinary tract, no symptoms occur from the infection. Most urinary tract infections occur from the bladder, but a more serious UTI comes from the kidneys. Both bladder and kidney infections should be treated as soon as possible, especially if symptoms become too severe and begin damaging the kidneys.

Receiving Care From Your Women’s Health Specialist

When experiencing a UTI, scheduling an appointment with a women’s health specialist is the best way to tackle the infection. Your gynecologist can help you prevent infections in the future and learn how to identify a UTI before it occurs. Getting women’s care will ensure that your infection is controlled and that you’re in good care.

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Victoria M. Petty, MD

Dr. Victoria M. Petty is board certified in Obstetrics and Gynecology. She has practiced in Bucks, Montgomery and Mercer counties for nearly 25 years. Her practice at Bucks County Women’s Wellness focuses solely on gynecology services. Dr. Petty attended the University of Pennsylvania where she completed her undergraduate and medical education. 

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