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Urinary tract infections (UTI) can happen to anyone at any time. Some people experience very painful symptoms while others have no symptoms at all. The term urinary tract infection is commonly abbreviated as UTI. It is an infection that occurs in the urinary system. UTIs are considered one of the most common infections. Bacteria and sometimes fungi getting into the urinary system are what cause a UTI. These usually enter the urinary system by various methods including sexual activity, poor hygiene, using the incorrect direction while wiping the genital area, and structural abnormalities. Common UTI symptoms include burning sensation while urinating, frequent urination, the urge to urinate even when the bladder is empty, pain, cramping, and abnormal urine. Read on to learn more about UTI facts and myths.

You Can Cure a UTI at Home

This is a myth. Although there may be people that claim they have methods to cure UTIs, it is not common practice or recommended by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). UTIs are a type of infection and are treated with antibiotics. In order to get a prescription for antibiotics, you will need to see your primary healthcare provider. If you do not have a primary healthcare provider you can go to urgent care for treatment. Antibiotics are not available for purchase over the counter. It is important that you seek medical care for UTIs because the infection could spread to other parts of the body.

You Should Drink Lots of Water When You Have a UTI

This is a fact. Drinking plenty of water when you have a UTI may help flush out the invader that is causing the UTI. It will also dilute your urine which may help reduce UTI pain. Many people swear by drinking cranberry juice during a UTI.

Cranberry Juice Will Cure My UTI

This is a myth. While many people recommend drinking cranberry juice during a UTI, it will not cure the infection. Antibiotic treatment is needed to cure a UTI. If you do decide to drink cranberry juice, be advised that it contains a large amount of sugar.

You Shouldn’t Drink Alcohol, Caffeine, Citrus, or Carbonated Drinks During a UTI

This is a fact. While drinking these beverages may not bother some people, they could irritate the bladder and make symptoms more uncomfortable.

Pyridium Will Cure My UTI

This is a myth. Only antibiotics will cure a UTI. Pyridium is a useful over-the-counter medication that helps relieve UTI symptoms but will not treat the infection. Be advised that Pyridium will turn your urine a red or orange color.

Any Antibiotic Will Cure My UTI

This is a myth. UTIs can be caused by many different types of bacteria and fungi. Your healthcare provider should ask you to complete a urine test, which will determine which specific bacteria or fungi is causing your infection. It is necessary to complete the urine test to make sure that the antibiotic they prescribe will treat your specific infection. There are different antibiotics to treat different types of bacteria. If you don’t receive the correct antibiotic your infection will continue and may spread.