How Can I Stop Getting Cystitis At Christmas?

Cystitis is a urinary tract infection. Its main symptoms are a burning sensation when peeing, an urgent need to go to the toilet and cloudy or bloody urine. Women are more likely to get it than men.

Causes include a bacterial infection, overusing bath products or damage to the bladder. The first two causes are normally temporary and curable. While the last one is a chronic condition that is difficult to treat.

Most people are able to treat cystitis themselves and it clears up after a few days. If the condition doesn't improve your doctor will prescribe antibiotics.  If you don't seek treatment it may develop into a kidney infection.

Christmas Cystitis Risks

The festive season is jam-packed with parties, alcohol, scented bath products, and romance. All of these cause cystitis if you don't take precautions.

Make sure you drink plenty of water to contract the diuretic effects of alcohol. Empty your bladder and freshen up after lovemaking to avoid getting a bladder infection.  Always empty your bladder and go to the toilet when you need to. Drinking lots of liquid (not alcohol) dilute your urine reducing the risk of infection. Smellies like bath bombs and bubble bath alters the bacterial balance in your urethra causing infections.

If you do get cystitis you will recognise the unpleasant symptoms straight away. The infection manifests itself as; a temperature, urgent need to go to the toilet, painful burning sensation when urinating, cloudy or bloody urine.  You may also have a dull ache in your pelvic area.  

Usually, plenty of liquids, a hot water bottle and regularly going to the toilet will treat the infection. Cystitis usually last for three days and rarely returns unless you are prone to it. If your symptoms persist for a few days you must contact your doctor for treatment.

Antibiotics and bacterial infections

Cystitis is a bacterial infection which is treated with antibiotics. You must take the complete course otherwise the bacteria may become immune to them. Antibiotics work by killing the bacteria so that the infection becomes weak and dissipates.  You will be protected from infection for a short time after finishing your course.

It is important to get treatment if your symptoms worsen because you are at risk of contracting a kidney infection. Antibiotics do not treat interstitial cystitis which is generally not caused by a bladder infection.  This type of cystitis is normally encountered by middle-aged women and manifests itself as pelvic pain.  There is no single cause or cure for this condition so doctors will try a variety of different treatments to relieve the symptoms.  If you feel pelvic pain and continually suffer from cystitis this may be the reason so you should visit your doctor.

You can avoid getting cystitis this Christmas by drinking plenty of water, wearing cotton underwear, going to the toilet after sex, avoiding highly perfumed bath products, going to the toilet when you need it and wiping away from your urethra.

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