Most Urinary Tract Infections (UTI) are caused by bacteria from the colon and rectal area, with e. Coli being the most common and responsible for 80% of all UTIs. Bacteria usually enters the urinary tract through the urethra. Once the bacteria enters the body, they begin to stick to the bladder wall and multiply, creating the infection.
Women are more susceptible to UTIs due to a shorter urethra which provides less of a barrier for the bacteria’s entry. Intercourse can increase the chance that bacteria will enter the urethra and is therefore a leading risk factor to contracting a UTI. Women between the ages of 16 and 35 are the most likely to contract a UTI. Though most UTIs are limited to the bladder, serious consequences may occur if the infection spreads to the kidneys.
Most UTIs are treated through oral antibiotics which help alleviate the pain and cure the infection. Most treatment periods are 3 days and symptoms should begin to improve within 36 hours. Symptoms include a frequent urge to urinate accompanied by pain or burning. The urine may also appear cloudy and dark if blood is present with a slight odor.