Water Water Water Everywhere…now drink it! Prevents bladder infections.

Patients with cystitis should be objectively educated on pros and cons of increasing water intake.


Background: Increased water intake is commonly recommended to prevent recurrent cystitis in premenopausal women, but the overall conclusive evidence and research is weak.

Objective: To determine the impact of increasing daily water intake on recurrent cystitis frequency.

Design: Randomized, open-labeled, controlled, 12-month clinical conducted at 1 research center in Sofia, Bulgaria, but also overseen by U.S. researchers and supported by Danone Research.

Methods: 140 healthy women with ≥3 episodes of recurrent cystitis in the past year consuming <1.5 L (approximately 51 ounces) fluid daily were included. Baseline, 6-month, and 12-month visits occurred along with monthly phone calls. Participants were assigned to drink their normal fluid intake in addition to 1.5 L of water or no extra fluids (control group) for 12 months. Mean age was 35 years.

Results: Mean number of episodes was 1.7 for water and 3.2 for control (P <0.001). Mean number of antibiotic treatments used to treat cystitis was 1.9 and 3.6 (P <0.001). Mean time between episodes was 142.8 and 84.4 days (P <0.001). Participants in the water group versus control had increased mean urine volume (P <0.04) and voids and reduced urine osmolality (both P <0.001).

Conclusions: Increased water consumption is an effective antibiotic-reducing method to prevent recurrent cystitis in high-risk premenopausal women who usually drink low levels of fluids daily.

Reviewer’s Comments: The occasional Internet advice to consume 8 glasses of water per day to improve your health has minimal to no evidence, but preliminary research is beginning to support something similar to this practice in urology to prevent kidney stones and now perhaps recurrent cystitis in premenopausal women who usually consume low levels of fluids (average of 0.5 L or 17 ounces/day). This is an unusually low amount (basically 2 cups of water per day) that was being consumed at baseline. What was missed is that 20% to 25% on average of fluid or water intake in humans actually comes from food sources, and this was not taken into account or addressed, which is surprising. In addition, the study occurred in Bulgaria at a clinical research center and not in the United States despite the slight indirect implication, and a commercial water source funded the study. Side effects were similar between the groups. Regardless, discussing fluid intake with patients is a logical, practical, and cost-effective option for patients that fit the criteria of this study.(Reviewer–Mark Moyad, MD, MPH).

Article Reviewed: Effect of Increased Daily Water Intake in Premenopausal Women With Recurrent Urinary Tract Infections: A Randomized Clinical Trial. Hooton TM, Vecchio M, et al: JAMA Intern Med; 2018;178 (November 1): 1509-1515.

Five home remedies of bladder infections.

From Medical News Today
A urinary tract infection is a common condition, often referred to as a UTI, that can be treated with home remedies.

When using home remedies for UTIs, it is helpful to understand the condition, including its causes and symptoms.

In some cases, home remedies for UTIs can be enough to ease symptoms and quicken recovery. Before relying on home remedies, however, it is always a good idea to speak to a doctor first.

What are UTIs?

doctor pointing at the bladder
Sometimes called a bladder infection, a UTI is an infection of the urinary tract that causes discomfort and frequent urges to urinate.

A UTI is an infection of the urinary tract, sometimes called a bladder infection.

The urinary tract is composed of the bladder, kidneys, urethra, and ureters. This system is responsible for processing and expelling urine from the body.

Usually, the urinary tract can prevent infection. Nevertheless, UTIs are common, and in some cases, they may pass in just a few weeks before symptoms become serious.

However, when an infection does occur, it is essential to seek medical attention, as soon as possible. This can prevent complications from occurring.

In addition to the advice your doctor provides you with, home remedies for UTIs can be adequate to alleviate symptoms in some cases.


Often UTIs are caused by bacteria that infect the urinary tract. This can happen for numerous reasons. For example, bacteria may enter the urinary tract during sex, or after using the bathroom.

UTIs can be related to other conditions, too, for example, kidney stones. If a person has kidney stones, these may block the urinary track, causing infections.

Those with diabetes also have an increased risk, as do people with a weakened immune system.

Further risks include certain medical treatments, such as chemotherapy or a urinary catheter, both of which may increase the risk of UTIs.


UTIs can be identified through a range of different symptoms. These may include:

  • The need to urinate more frequently than usual: If needing to urinate becomes disruptive to day-to-day life, it can be a sign of a UTI.
  • Pain or discomfort around the bladder and urethra: This can be felt before or after urinating, though it is mainly noticed when urinating. Sometimes, it is described as a burning sensation.
  • Changes in the quality of urine: This may include the color, smell, or appearance. Blood in the urine may also be a symptom of UTIs.

These symptoms may be accompanied by a general feeling of being unwell, such as being tired or having a fever.

Treating a UTI at home

While it is always a good idea to speak to a doctor for advice, there are ways the symptoms of a UTI can be treated at home.

Listed here are five of the most effective UTI home remedies:

1. Drinking fluids

woman drinking lots of water for a urinary tract infection
Drinking plenty of water will help flush the bacteria out of the urinary tract.

One of the simplest home remedies for a UTI is to drink plenty of water. This helps to flush the bacteria out of the body.

Usually, the recommendation is for an individual to drink up to half of their body weight in water. However, it is essential that medical advice is sought when deciding the amount to drink per day.

Drinking too much can be dangerous, particularly with pre-existing kidney diseases.

2. Urinate when necessary

It can be tempting to avoid urinating with a UTI. This is because a UTI can cause a person to want to urinate more frequently than usual, even if there is no urine to release.

However, urination can help to expel the bacteria that are causing the infection. Along with drinking more fluids, this can ease symptoms and quicken a recovery.

3. Heat

Some home remedies for UTIs can help to ease symptoms, such as pain and discomfort, though these may not aid recovery.

For example, applying a heat pad to the bladder or pubic area can help to relieve pain and discomfort temporarily.

Heat should not be applied directly to the skin, and should not be too hot. Heat should only be applied for short periods to avoid causing burns to the skin.

4. Clothing

Loose fitting clothing can prevent moisture from making the infection worse. Tight clothing can encourage moisture to develop.

Keeping the pubic area clean and dry is important to prevent the growth of bacteria.

5. Diet

citrus sources of vitamin c
Increasing vitamin C intake can help prevent the growth of bacteria in the urinary tract.

Certain foods can worsen symptoms. These include foods that are:

  • hot or spicy
  • fizzy
  • caffeinated
  • alcoholic

High fiber foods may help to quicken recovery. Getting a range of essential nutrients is also important to allow the body to heal itself.

Vitamin C can inhibit the growth of bacteria in the urinary tract since it makes urine more acidic. Although it is usually advised that vitamin C intake be increased via a varied diet, supplements may be recommended.

Cranberry juice is often considered to be a home remedy for UTIs. However, there is no conclusive study proving this to be true.

Preventing a UTI

Preventing UTIs is not always possible, though there are steps that can be taken to help minimize the risk of them occurring.

After using the bathroom, wiping from front to back can prevent bacteria from entering the urinary tract.

Urinating after sexual activity can also help to expel bacteria that may have entered the urinary tract. Doing this as soon as possible after sexual activity is usually recommended.

When to see a doctor

If symptoms of the UTI are severe or persist for more than 1 week without improvement, then it is essential to see a doctor. Severe symptoms that are long-lasting can indicate that the UTI is chronic.

In many cases where the UTI is mild or acute, it may pass in just 2-3 days with home remedy treatments.

Safety and home remedies

It is important to seek professional medical advice when considering home remedies for UTIs.

Home remedies for UTIs may be used to ease symptoms and support recovery in combination with prescribed treatment options. Home remedies are not necessarily more effective than prescribed treatment and drugs.

Any pre-existing conditions or medication should be taken into consideration before relying on home remedies for UTIs.

Some herbal remedies or changes to the diet can interact with existing conditions or medication in a way that could adversely affect health. They may also make symptoms of a UTI worse.

Usually, home remedies for UTIs can be administered safely. However, it is always recommended that they are discussed with a doctor first.

Home remedies are not a replacement for professional medical treatment.

The urologist’s most powerful secret weapon…for the post menopausal woman!


A small amount of Estrace cream to the urethra a few times a week helps with:

  • The prevention of bladder infections
  • The symptoms of Overactive Bladder
  • Improve the pain that may be experienced with intimacy
  • Help with urgency incontinence and getting up at night

Click here for over view of atrophic vaginitis.

Tricks to help you empty your bladder better!

Urologists often use ultrasound to perform a bladder post void residual. This is commonly done on patients who have a history of bladder infections, incontinence or a history of a poor stream with the feeling of incomplete emptying. If this value is high, it should be less than 50ccs (about an once and a half), then something needs to be done to correct that. There are surgeries for men, and meds for both the male and female howvever the technique of double voiding is a conservative way to improve how the bladder empties. The rationale and technique is nicely explained in this article from Medical News Today.

From Medical News Today

Double voiding: A guide to bladder-emptying techniques



Why do girls get bladder infections more frequently than boys?

Because of the difference in the length of the urethra, the female’s being much shorter, it is easier for bacteria from the outside world to get into the bladder.

Comparing male and female urinary systems

  • Although most patients think of Ecoli as a very bad bacteria, it is actually the most common cause of bladder infections.
  • The most common source of bacteria causing a bladder infection is the person’s own body.
  • That is why in females with recurrent urinary infections the urologist will commonly prescribe a low dose antibiotic to take after sexual intercourse.
  • The reason females get urinary tract infections more commonly than males is due to the difference in the length of the urethra.
  • As seen in the above diagram, the female urethra is much shorter than the males.
  • As a result it is easier for bacteria to get into the bladder and and then multiply to cause the symptoms of a bladder infection.
  • In a male by the time the bacteria gets in the urethra and begins its travel to the bladder, the male may void and hence wash out the offending bacteria before it can become a true infection.
  • An infection in a male is viewed more seriously than in a female for the above reasons.
  • Suppressive therapy (a small amount of an antibiotic daily), self treatment protocol (the patient treats herself with a short course of antibiotics at the earliest sign of an infection), or post coital therapy (a pill after sex) are all methods used to manage recurrent urinary tract infections in a female.
  • The lack of estrogen in the post menopausal female can contribute to infections and this too is addressed in the female with recurrent urinary tract infections.

The urologists at Northeast Georgia Urological Associates treat recurrent urinary infections in both the male and female on a daily basis. Feel free to contact us for an evaluation if this is an issue for you.

You can email 24/7 and leave your phone number and we’ll call back to arrange an appointment ASAP!