When you feel pain or a burning sensation each time you urinate, it could be a sign of bladder infection. This bacterial infection can affect any part of your urinary tract. Actually, a bladder infection is a common type of urinary tract infection or UTI. This condition is also often called cystitis, which means inflammation of the bladder. You’re probably wondering what the causes of bladder infection are.
There are several, but studies show that sexually active people have a higher risk of developing this condition. The most common strain of bladder infection is the bacteria Escherichia coli or E. coli. When the bacteria enter the bladder through the urethra, the infection is triggered.
Urologists at Mayo Clinic say that infection of the urethra may occur when gastrointestinal bacteria travels from the anus straight up to the urethra. These bacteria from the anus normally reside in abundance on the skin closest to the rectum or in the vagina. Hence, women have higher tendencies of being infected. During sexual intercourse or in any activity where the vagina is subjected to rubbing, the risk of pushing bacteria into the urethra is great. This is probably the reason why some people refer to bladder infection as “honeymoon cystitis”. This only underscores the fact that the risk for bladder infection increases with frequent sexual intercourse.
Bladder infection doesn’t spare pregnant women, too. The hormonal changes a woman goes through during pregnancy, as well as increased kidney function, making her susceptible to bladder infections. Included among the symptoms of bladder infections or urinary tract infections is waiting too long to urinate. Alternatively, UTI can cause incontinence or the strong, uncontrollable urge to urinate, which is why patients with UTI are told to take a bladder control supplement. The bladder is a muscle. Hence, just as the muscles in your arms flex, so does the bladder. It expands to keep urine in and contracts every time you urinate. If you wait too long before you urinate from the time you first experience the need to go, your bladder would stretch beyond its natural capacity.
If this continues, or if holding your urine becomes a habit, your bladder muscle would become significantly weaker. When your bladder becomes too weak, it may lose its ability to empty out completely; thus, each time you urinate, some urine would be left inside. While urine doesn’t necessarily contain bacteria, leftover urine in the bladder has a higher risk of being infected with bacteria. As a result, it increases the chances of developing bladder infection or UTI.
Nevertheless, while bladder infections are uncomfortable and potentially serious, its treatment isn’t difficult. For men, though, bladder infections can be a sign of something more serious; thus, there is an even greater need to detect what the causes of bladder infection are. However, it’s important to establish the fact that bladder infections rarely lead to complications. Yet, if you don’t do anything to treat it at its early stages, it can lead to complications that are more serious. According to the National Kidney and Urological Information Clearinghouse, when bacteria present in the bladder travels up to the kidneys, a serious kidney infection known as pyelonephritis may develop. Symptoms of this infection are pain and fever. If you don’t treat the kidney infection right away, it ends up being more serious than bladder infection and may lead to complications.
Therefore, as soon as you start feeling something different in your bladder area, don’t hesitate to consult with your doctor. As they say, “Prevention is better than cure”. Never underestimate the power of those five words.