Urinary tract in teens and adults can affect any part of the urinary system including the bladder, kidneys and the tubes known as ureters. The most common UTI is bladder infection which occurs when bacteria get into the bladder through the urethra. Bacteria from stool are the most common cause of UTI.
Symptoms or UTI in Teens and Adults
- Burning sensation when urinating
- Low abdominal pain
- The urge to urinate yet no or very little comes out
- Discolored urine with a foul smell
- Cloudy urine
- Pain on the lower side of the back
- Nausea and vomiting
Teenagers and Adults at Risk of UTI
UTI occurs in teenagers and adults who have low immunity as a result of disease such as diabetes, HIV or kidney stones which also cause blockage and infection because it makes it difficult to get rid of all the urine in the bladder. Patients who use catheters to drain their bladder can get infected with UTI. Adults or teenagers who have urinary tract defects from birth are also at risk of UTI. Men and women who have unprotected sex and anal sex increase their chance of UTI infection.
UTI in Girls and Women
Sexually active women and teenage girls are at more risk of UTI in comparison to the males because of the differences in anatomy. Bacteria can enter their urethra because it is near the anus. Also sexual intercourse pushes bacteria far inside it. So women should bathe or urinate after sex to get rid of the bacteria from the urethra. Pregnancy and menopause increases the risk of UTI because of pressure applied on the bladder and hormonal change respectively.
UTI in Boys and Men
The prostate gland produced hormones which kill bacteria in the urinary tract. Recurrent UTI in a man could signify prostate problems such as an enlarged prostate (prostatitis) commonly in older men. Uncircumcised men can get UTI easily if they do not observe personal hygiene of the foreskin. Men can have asymptomatic bacteria in their urinary tract without having UTI symptoms.
Diagnosis and Treatment
Tests are done by getting a sample of urine and checking it for the presence of blood or bacteria that will signify infection. If you have treated UTI before yet it reoccurs there could be other underlying problems which your doctor will investigate.
UTI is cured by oral antibiotics administered for a week in case of mild infection or 2 weeks and above when the infection has spread. Doctors will give you pain relief pills to ease your lower back or abdominal pain and the burning during urination. Complications of UTI are uncommon in adults although prolonged UTI without treatment can lead to kidney damage, and sepsis or infection that spreads the bacteria in the body.
How to Prevent UTI
- Always try to empty your bladder completely when you urinate
- Drink a lot of fluids during treatment and set the goal to drink a lot of water
- Take care of your personal hygiene and keep the genital area very clean
- Use home remedies of UTI