There are about a million things I would rather put up with than a urinary tract infection. Seriously, sitting through jury duty would be way more fun. However, sitting through jury duty with a UTI would be my personal hell. A UTI can affect your urethra, kidneys, and bladder, and it will make you run to the bathroom just to feel like fire is coming out of your body.
Relax. We’ve got you. We know that running to the doc’s office is sometimes totally impossible. Plus, we aren’t always just relaxing at home when we realize we have a UTI; many of us are at work or on a nice vacation or doing something we loathe (like jury duty).
While the ONLY WAY to CURE a UTI is to take a round of doctor-prescribed antibiotics, there are still ways to prevent and fight symptoms.
Here are top ways to stop UTIs before they start or to help ease the pain if you already have an infection:
1. Stock up on foods rich in Vitamin C
While Vitamin C will only prevent a UTI — not cure or treat it — drinking vitamin C or taking supplements is one way to keep bacterial growth at bay since it keeps the urine acidic. The more acidic your urine is, the less likely more bacteria will form. And since it can also give your immune system a major boost, the vitamin may also come in handy to help stave off future UTIs. It is not effective in killing bacteria that causes a UTI, but you can definitely try this as a preventative measure.
2. D-Mannose pills
The supplement D-Mannose contains agents similar to the ones found in cranberries and cranberry juice — without all the sugar. It’s only believed to prevent bacteria from sticking to the bladder and urethra wall. While that has yet to be proven, many say D-Mannose help control symptoms.
3. Load up on fluids
No, Diet Coke doesn’t count; you need to be drinking fluids low in sugar. Loading up on your H2O intake helps to decrease the amount of bacteria present in the bladder or urethral tissue, which is especially helpful if you’re someone who is prone to repeat infections.
4. Wash your sex toys well & put them away — for now — and ditch ANY scented tampons
Many of us get UTIs from some sort of sexual activity. When having sex (whether with a person or toy), bacteria gets pushed into the urethra, which can cause an infection. Make sure toys are ALL CLEAN! And pee before or after (I would suggest after, if you can, to push out anything that got up there) having intercourse or anything entering your vagina.
Also, toss those sneaky little nasty scented tampons! We know by now that organic cotton tampons are the way to go, anyway! But, we understand sometimes you gotta just take what you can get when at the office or out with friends. Just know that the foreign bodies disrupt the normal PH in the vagina and attract the not-so-good bacteria.