How to Prevent a Bladder Infection: Here’s What You Need to Know

A close-up image of a woman sitting on a white couch with both hands over her lower abdomen.

Bladder infections can cause uncomfortable and unrelenting pelvic pain and abdominal pressure.

Although painful, 50% to 60% of women will have at least one bladder infection in adulthood.

Most common in women 65 and older, they affect millions of people yearly with cases ranging from mild to severe.

If you or a loved one is experiencing symptoms consistent with a bladder infection or seem more prone to getting them often, we can help by providing tips on avoiding infection entirely.

Let’s discuss bladder infections in more detail, including symptoms, causes, risk factors, treatment options, and effective ways to prevent them altogether.

What Is a Bladder Infection?

A bladder infection is a urinary tract infection affecting the bladder.

A bladder infection is sometimes interchanged with the term UTI, as most urinary tract infections directly affect the bladder over other urinary tract organs.

The most significant difference between a bladder infection and a UTI is that a bladder infection solely affects the bladder. In contrast, a UTI can affect all parts of the urinary tract, sometimes not directly involving the bladder.

Infections limited to the bladder cause mild to moderate pain and can often be treated quickly without further complications.

If you suspect that you have a bladder infection, you should be treated right away.

Symptoms

Bladder infection symptoms differ from person to person but often include

  • Pelvic pressure
  • Abdomen pain
  • Frequent and painful urination
  • Blood in urine

If more than one area of the urinary tract, such as the kidneys or urethra, is affected, you may also experience

  • A persistent urge to urinate
  • Passing frequent, small amounts of urine
  • Urine that appears cloudy, red, or bright pink
  • Strong-smelling urine

In rare cases, people may not experience symptoms at all.

Cause and Risk Factors

Bladder infections are caused by bacteria that enter the urinary tract through the urethra and begin to multiply inside the bladder.

Although a bladder infection can affect anyone at any age, you may be at increased risk if you

  • Are a female
  • Have urinary tract abnormalities
  • Are actively having sexual intercourse
  • Take birth control
  • Are in menopause
  • Have a suppressed immune system
  • Have a catheter
  • Have recently undergone a surgical urinary tract procedure

How to Prevent a Bladder Infection

Although you cannot avoid a bladder infection completely, there are various ways to reduce your risk of developing one.

To try and prevent a bladder infection

  • Drink plenty of water regularly to flush out any stagnant bacteria in your bladder
  • Urinate every 2 to 3 hours
  • Urinate before and after sexual intercourse
  • Wipe front to back after urinating or defecating
  • Manage diabetes, and other preexisting conditions that could affect your bladder or urinary tract

Other ways to avoid a bladder infection are included below.

Women should not

  • Use vaginal deodorants
  • Douche your vagina
  • Use diaphragms

No one should

  • Use unlubricated condoms
  • Hold your urine for excessive periods
  • Remain in wet clothes or swimsuits after time in the water
  • Wear non cotton underwear

Bladder Infection Treatment

If you do contract a bladder infection, antibiotics are the most common and straightforward way to treat it.

Prescribed medications may include

  • Trimethoprim/sulfamethoxazole
  • Fosfomycin
  • Nitrofurantoin
  • Cephalexin
  • Ceftriaxone

Get Prompt Bladder Infection Treatment at Thibodaux Regional Urgent Care

If you are experiencing pelvic pain, pressure, or pain while urinating, you may have a bladder infection.

Our team of compassionate medical professionals can help you feel better sooner by providing effective care to treat a bladder infection.

At Thibodaux Regional Urgent Care, we are here to help you seven days a week. Simply walk in or schedule an appointment online. So don’t delay; get a proper diagnosis and effective treatment today.