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When to See a Doctor About a UTI

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When to See a Doctor About a UTI

A urinary tract infection (UTI) is more than just an inconvenience; it can significantly impact your daily life and, if left untreated, lead to health complications. At Feminine Urgicare, an urgent care center here in Paramus, New Jersey, our team is dedicated to the unique needs of women.

UTIs are common, and it’s important to know when to seek medical attention and how to reduce the risk of future episodes.

Know the symptoms

UTIs happen when bacteria get into the urinary tract and cause infection. Symptoms can vary but typically include:

  • A burning sensation during urination
  • Frequent urge to urinate
  • Cloudy, dark, bloody, or strange-smelling urine
  • Pelvic pain in women, particularly in the lower abdomen

These symptoms are your body's way of signaling that something is wrong. Paying attention to them is key so that you can take action.

When to consult a doctor

It's crucial to seek medical attention if you experience any UTI symptoms. Early treatment can prevent the infection from getting worse. Visiting Feminine Urgicare ensures that you get care for your UTI promptly, instead of waiting to get in to see your primary care provider. Here’s what to look out for:

Persistent symptoms

If your symptoms don't improve or worsen within 24 hours, it's time to see a doctor. Delaying treatment can lead to complications, including kidney infections.

Recurring infections

Seek medical advice if you experience recurrent UTIs (two or more within six months, or three or more within a year).

During pregnancy

You shouldn’t delay seeing a doctor if you’re pregnant, as UTIs during pregnancy can lead to high-risk complications.

The risks of untreated UTIs

Ignoring UTI symptoms can lead to more serious health problems. An untreated UTI can spread to the kidneys, causing pyelonephritis, a kidney infection that can be serious and require hospitalization. Early treatment is key to avoiding such complications.

Diagnosis and treatment

A urine test to identify bacteria and white blood cells can help diagnose a UTI. Treatment usually includes a course of antibiotics. It's essential to complete the full course of antibiotics prescribed, even if symptoms disappear, to ensure the infection is fully cleared.

Prevention: reducing the risk of UTIs

While not all UTIs can be prevented, certain lifestyle changes can reduce your risk. Ensure that you’re drinking plenty of water to help flush bacteria from your urinary tract, and avoid holding urine for long periods.

Wipe from front to back to prevent bacteria from spreading to the urethra. Cranberry juice can help prevent UTIs by stopping bacteria from sticking to the urinary tract.

A UTI can be painful and frustrating, but with prompt and proper treatment, it's highly manageable. Being aware of the symptoms and understanding when to seek medical advice are crucial steps in maintaining your urinary health.

If you suspect you have a UTI, don't hesitate to contact Feminine Urgicare. Call 201-597-4000 to schedule an appointment today.