Urinary tract infections (UTI’s) are a very common health problem. Although both men and women get urinary tract infections, women are more prone to them. However, urinary tract infections can also lead to kidney infections and other complications if the bacteria spread to the kidneys or bloodstream.
Bacteria from the bowel are the most common cause of urinary tract infections, but fungi and viruses can also cause infection. The two strains of bacteria E. coli and Staph. saprophyticus account for about 80% of cases.
Common symptoms of urinary tract infection include frequent urge to urinate, passing small quantities of urine, a burning sensation when urinating, cloudy or dark urine, abdominal pain, etc.
Because antibiotics are the most common conventional treatment for urinary tract infections, bacteria have become antibiotic-resistant and recurring infections are a major concern. For this reason, it’s important to use home remedies for urinary tract infections that eliminate bacteria completely and reduce the risk of developing recurrent urinary tract infections.
Here are nine natural remedies for urinary tract infections:
1.Drink plenty of fluids
Hydration status has been linked to the risk of urinary tract infection. This is because regular urination can help flush bacteria from the urinary tract to prevent infection.
One study examined participants with long-term urinary catheters and found that low urine output was associated with an increased risk of developing a UTI. Drink at least one glass of water for every meal and snack of the day in order to flush out bacteria that can lead to infection.
2.Stay clean and dry
Bacteria grows in a moist environment. Natural remedies for urinary tract infection include wearing loose-fitting, clean clothes and underwear. It’s important to wear loose-fitting clothes and underwear, which allows air to keep the urethra dry. Wearing tight jeans or material like nylon can be problematic because moisture can be trapped, allowing bacteria to grow.
Probiotics are beneficial microorganisms that are consumed through food or supplements. They can promote a healthy balance of bacteria in your gut. The use of probiotics has been linked to everything from improved digestive health to enhanced immune function. Some studies also show that certain strains of probiotics may reduce the risk of UTIs.
Probiotics are available in supplement form or can be found in fermented foods, such as kefir, kimchi, probiotic yogurt, raw cheese, sauerkraut, and kombucha.
4.Try cranberry juice
Medical researchers learned as early as the 1840s that the hippuric acid in cranberries inhibits the growth of E. coli bacteria, the most common cause of UTI. Hippuric acid also keeps E. coli from adhering to the urinary tract walls, and from spreading from the bladder to the kidneys.
For a natural remedy, drink three 8-ounce servings of pure cranberry juice. Make sure it’s not a juice “cocktail,” which contains lots of sugar. Also, eating 1/2 cup of dried cranberries might help, according to a small Harvard study.
D-Mannose is natural sugar, related to glucose. In a study of more than 300 women with a history of recurrent UTI, women were treated either with antibiotics, 2 grams of D-Mannose or they weren’t treated daily for six months. 20% of women who were treated with antibiotics had recurrent UTI. On the other hand, only 15% of people who were treated with D-Mannose had recurrent UTI. However, the incidence of side effects was significantly lower in the D-mannose group than the antibiotics group.
Getting plenty of foods high in vitamin C is important because large amounts of vitamin C make urine more acidic. This inhibits the growth of bacteria in your urinary tract, according to the Johns Hopkins Medicine health library. If you have an active UTI, taking vitamin C supplements may help, too, advises Kandis Rivers, MD, a urologist at Henry Ford Health System in West Bloomfield, Michigan.
Clove oil has anti-inflammatory properties, and it’s used to relieve pain and promote healing. Research published in Phytotherapy Research indicates that clove oil has antimicrobial, antifungal and antiviral activity. Clove can be taken internally for two weeks at a time as a UTI treatment, under the care of a health care provider or nutritionist.
Uva ursi is an herb that contains a number of substances that help fight infections, including UTIs. The herb contains several chemicals with antiseptic properties. The herb is easily available at drugstores in supplement forms. When this supplement is taken, the antiseptic quality of this herb kills the bacteria and also gently stimulates urination.
Note: People with kidney or liver disease, pregnant or nursing women, and children should not take uva ursi.
A recent study found out that oregano oil was active against all of the clinical strains of bacteria that were tested, and it successfully inhibited the growth of E. coli, the bacteria most commonly seen in UTIs When taking oregano oil internally, mix it with water or coconut oil. It’s not recommended taking oregano oil for more than two weeks at a time, and it should be administered under the guidance of your healthcare provider.