(WXYZ) – It comes down to how much water you drink, according to a new study in Bulgaria. A UTI or urinary tract infection is the second most common type of infection leading to 8 million doctor visits annually here in the U.S.
They’re often treated with antibiotics but this new study discovered drinking an extra 6 cups of water a day not only cut reinfection rates down by 48 percent, but also antibiotic use by 47 percent.
Researchers speculate that the extra fluid might help reduce bacteria concentration and keep it from clinging to the bladder.
UTI’s affect both sexes but women tend to get them more.
An infection can involve any part of your urinary tract like your kidneys, bladder and urethra. They typically happen when bacteria enters your urethra, the tube that urine passes through when exiting your body.
It can be painful and very uncomfortable. Having a UTI in your bladder is common and easily treated. A UTI that spreads to your kidneys can have serious consequences.
To help prevent UTI’s from occurring, here are my prescriptions;
- Drink lots of fluids daily, especially water. At the end of the study, the Bulgarian women were drinking on average about 12 cups of fluids a day.
- After using the toilet it’s important for women to wipe front to back. This helps keep bacteria in the anal area from reaching the urethra.
- Talk to your doctor if you’re using a diaphragm or spermicidal agents for birth control. These methods could be increasing your risk for UTI’s.
- Drink cranberry juice. While this juice continues to be studied for possible infection-fighting properties, there’s little harm in drinking it. Just watch the calories.
It’s also important to watch for signs of a UTI like an urge to pee frequently, a burning sensation when urinating, passing small amounts of urine, seeing blood or cloudy urine, and feeling pain in your pelvic area.
If you notice any of these symptoms, please see your doctor for testing and treatment.
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