Should You See an Urgent Care Provider for a UTI?
If you have ever felt a burning sensation while trying to urinate, you may have a urinary tract infection. These infections are severely painful, and they can pop up seemingly out of nowhere. If you believe you may have a urinary tract infection, read on. You may need medical attention.
What Causes Urinary Tract Infections?
Urinary tract infections (UTIs) occur after bacteria gets trapped in your urinary system, typically the urethra. The bacteria can spread into your bladder and kidneys. Because women have a shorter urethra, they are more likely to contract these infections than men.
How does that bacteria get there in the first place? Typically, UTIs occur when bacteria transfers during sexual intercourse or when you wipe after using the bathroom. After you contract the infection, you may notice painful urination, urges to urinate frequently, cloudy urine, smelly urine, or bloody urine.
How Do Doctors Treat Urinary Tract Infections?
An untreated UTI can have long-lasting side effects, so you should seek treatment right away. Your doctor will prescribe antibiotics to fight the infection. When you take the antibiotics as prescribed, you will see the infection diminish in a matter of days, and you will feel relief as the pain disappears.
Unfortunately, your doctor may not be available to meet with you right away. Perhaps you feel pain outside of office hours or you simply can’t get an appointment until next week. The good news is you do not have to live in pain until then. You have options.
What Can You Do in the Meantime?
As you wait for a medical provider, you may try some at-home remedies to relieve pain in the meantime. The best thing you can do while you wait is to drink more water. Carry water with you everywhere and ensure you are sipping it regularly. The more you urinate, the more bacteria you flush out of your body naturally.
Many people swear by drinking unsweetened cranberry juice. Cranberries are thought to contain a compound that makes the odds of bacteria sticking to your urethra less likely. Just make sure you are not drinking sugary drinks.
Some people also take extra Vitamin C, which boosts your immune system but also makes your urine more acidic, which can help eliminate bacteria. Vitamin C is found in many fruits and veggies, including oranges and green peppers.
Whatever you do, do not avoid urinating even though it may be painful to do so. Bacteria will multiply when it sits inside your bladder, ultimately causing more pain.
You can also take over-the-counter pain medication to ease your pain in the meantime. Certain medications, like Azo, are designed specifically to curb the pain of a UTI, but you can also take pain medications like Tylenol to take the edge off.
You can also see an urgent care provider to obtain prescription medication. Urgent care providers are available on short-term notice, which means you may not need an appointment. You can see a provider quickly, especially in cases when you cannot see your regular doctor.
When Do You Need to See an Urgent Care Provider?
You should see an urgent care provider if you are unable to obtain an appointment through your normal doctor. You should come in when you feel painful urination that persists, even after you drink more water. Do not let the UTI last for days or weeks before you seek help.
Premier Urgent Care Centers of California, Inc. offers assistance for health issues like urinary tract infections. Do you have questions about our office? Call us today to ask about the services we provide and our office availability.