What is Bladder Infections?
What is Bladder Infections? Bladder infection is an inflammation that occurs in the bladder. Bladder infections are commonly caused by bacteria. This infection can become more severe if the bacteria spread to the kidneys.
Compared with men, women are more likely to have bladder infections. This is because the urethral tract (the channel that carries urine from the bladder out of the body) in the woman is shorter, and the female urethral mouth is very close to the anus. There is no age limit for women who may develop bladder infections. However, women who are pregnant, sexually active, and who have gone through menopause are at greater risk.
Although the risk level is not as high as women, bladder infections can occur more severely in men. The things that trigger a bladder infection in men are prostate infections, blockage of the bladder system due to a tumor, or due to swelling of the prostate. Men who have unprotected anal sex have a higher risk of developing bladder infections.
What are the Symptoms of Bladder Infections?
The symptoms of bladder infection between adults and children will be slightly different. The symptoms of bladder infections in adults are:
- Sensation of pain, burning, or stinging during urination.
- The body feels weak or feverish.
- Increased frequency of urination but few urine out.
- There is blood in the urine or hematuria.
- Urine will be more dark, dark, and strongly scented.
- The appearance of pain in the lower abdomen (or just above the pelvic bone) or on the lower back.
While in children, one of the symptoms that indicates they have a bladder infection is incontinent bed wetting during the day. Some other symptoms of bladder infections that may occur are:
- Feeling weak or tired.
- Easy to get angry.
- Decreased appetite.
- Pain during urination.
If you or your child has frequent urination or urine mixed with blood, see your doctor immediately. If the symptoms of bladder infection return after you finish the antibiotic dose, you may need other types of medications. Ask your doctor more clearly about the symptoms you are experiencing, symptoms may be caused by other medical conditions.
Causes of Bladder Infections
Bladder infections are most often caused by bacteria from the outside, which enter into the urinary tract through the urethra and begin to multiply.
Bacteria can enter and multiply in the bladder if a person still leaves urine in the bladder every urination. The presence of urine in the bladder may inadvertently be caused by: the urinary tract system is hampered eg due to tumor or enlarged prostate in men. Pregnancy can also put pressure on the pelvis and also the bladder.
As many as 70 to 95 percent of bladder infections caused by bacteria are caused by E. coli bacteria. In addition to E coli, other bacteria that cause bladder infections include:
- Proteus species.
- Klebsiella species.
- Enterococcus faecalis.
- Bacteria yeast.
In young women, Staphylococcus saprophyticus bacteria can also be a cause of bladder infections.
Bladder infections due to bacteria are more common in women, this is because the position of the female urethra is more adjacent to the anus. This means that bacteria from the anus move more easily into the urethra.
In addition to the adjacent position of the urethra and anus, bacterial transfer in women may occur when:
- Insert tampon-type pads.
- Making love.
- Use diaphragm contraception.
- Wipe with a tissue after from the toilet with the position from back to front. This risk can be avoided if you wipe in the opposite direction (from front to back).
- Women entering menopause. At this time, women produce only a small amount of vaginal fluid and consequently bacteria more easily reproduce.
Diagnosis of Bladder Infections
To diagnose bladder infections, the doctor will ask about the symptoms experienced by the patient. Here are some tests done to diagnose bladder infections:
- Dipstick paper. This is a strip of paper containing chemicals and will react to certain bacteria by changing the color of the paper.
- Urine sample test. Samples from your urine will be checked in the laboratory to find out what bacteria cause bladder infections. This test can also tell if a bladder infection is caused by another condition.
- Cystoscopy. The procedure in which a small camera is used to check your bladder.
- Imaging tests such as ultrasound and X-rays will be recommended if you have recurrent bladder infections and are not responding to antibiotics.
Step Treatment of Bladder Infections
Treatment to deal with bladder infections is divided into two types, namely self-care and the use of antibiotics based on a doctor’s prescription.
For mild bladder infections, the doctor may not give antibiotics to avoid antibiotic resistance. Antibiotic resistance is a condition in which bacteria adapt and survive despite antibiotics. This resistance will impact on reduced effectiveness of treatment in the future.
Usually the symptoms of a mild bladder infection will disappear by itself within a few days without special treatment.
Self-care can be done if your bladder infection is mild, and you feel no need to see a doctor. Here are some ways you can do it yourself:
- Avoid sexual intercourse, because it can make the infection that occurs worsened.
- Avoid alcohol consumption.
- In some people, consuming sodium bicarbonate or potassium citrate can help relieve pain during urination.
- Take painkillers like paracetamol or ibuprofen.
To overcome recurrent or severe bladder infections, antibiotic treatment based on a prescription should be undertaken. Your doctor may also recommend you to a specialist for urinary tract disorders if necessary.
After taking antibiotics, usually the symptoms of bladder infection will soon improve. If the antibiotic effect is not felt, see a doctor.
How To Prevent Bladder Infections
Although not all bladder infections can be prevented, here are some precautions to avoid bladder infections:
- Do not delay urination, holding urine can make the bladder tense and susceptible to infection. And be sure to remove the whole urine in the bladder.
- Use underwear from cotton.
- Avoid wearing tight pants.
- Reduce the use of soap and powder containing perfume in the genital area.
- Do not overuse the body or bathe in a bath, so that the genital area is not exposed to the cleaning product chemicals.
- Some foods and drinks can aggravate a bladder infection that a person experiences, such as coffee, fruit juice, or spicy foods.
Get used to wiping the female genital area from the front to the back, after urination. If bladder infections appear after you have sex, empty your bladder after sexual intercourse so that unwanted bacteria can be wasted through the urine.
If you have recurrent bladder infections related to sexual activity, you can take each antibiotic after intercourse. If it is relapse but not related to sexual activity, then you can take antibiotics every 6 months in low doses.