Don’t let a UTI give you the Summertime Blues
As we enter the dog days of summer, it’s essential to stay hydrated and keep track of your fluid intake. Drinking plenty of water keeps your body cool and healthy so you can spend more time enjoying all that summer has to offer. However, there are more advantages to staying hydrated than you might think – recent studies show that staying hydrated can even prevent the body from developing a urinary tract infection.
Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are bacterial infections most commonly found in the urethra and bladder. Symptoms are relative to the area of the urinary tract that is infected, but the most common symptoms include frequent urination, a burning sensation while urinating, and urine that is cloudy and/or has a strong odor. In more severe cases of a UTI, men can experience rectal pain while women could experience pain in the pelvic region. The standard treatment option for a UTI is an antibiotic medication. However, if the UTI is the result of a virus or fungus, patients will need antiviral or antifungal medication to eradicate the infection.
According to a 2018 randomized clinical trial conducted by JAMA Internal Medicine, researchers studied the correlation between hydration and UTIs over a 12-month period. In the end, the research team came to the conclusion that premenopausal women who consume more than 1.5 liters of water per day (roughly six 8oz cups of water) had significantly lowered their chances of developing a UTI. Put simply, drinking more water may decrease the frequency of urinary tract infections up to 50 percent!
So how does hydration relate to UTIs in the first place? Essentially, drinking water dilutes the urine, and if one consumes enough water, the result is a higher urine output than average. Though some may be irritated by the frequent bathroom breaks, this allows the body to expel the UTI bacteria more quickly.
For those looking to find a method of keeping track of fluid intake, there are several smartphone and smartwatch applications that can help. These apps will not only keep a real-time record of your fluid intake, but they will also send notifications that remind you to take a water break throughout the day. Additionally, making a habit of bringing a refillable water bottle with you throughout the day can help ensure you’re ready to hydrate anytime and anywhere.
If you or a loved one are experiencing symptoms of a UTI or have trouble with frequent urinary tract infections, contact us. We’ll create a treatment plan specific to your needs so you can enjoy the rest of your summer.