The bladder is an important organ in the lower abdomen. It is where the urine accumulates. If the bladder is full of urine, you’ll feel uncomfortable and you will feel the need to urinate.
The bladder is connected to the urethra. The urethra leads out of the body:
- in a woman through the vagina,
- in a man through the penis.
When urinating, the urine drains through the urethra.
The urethra and bladder can become inflamed. This inflammation is called cystitis. Men rarely have cystitis. But in men, the cause of cystitis is often worse than in women. Therefore, men should always go to the doctor in case of cystitis.
What are the causes of cystitis?
There are various causes of cystitis. Most often, Escherichia coli bacteria cause cystitis. Escherichia coli bacteria are intestinal bacteria which play an important task in the said organ. The E-coli are good bacteria when they stay in the intestine. Unfortunately, these gut bacteria sometimes get into the urethra because the intestinal exit is close to the urethral exit. Then from the urethra, the bacteria can find its way to the bladder and cause problems there. Being an alien in the bladder, the Escherichia coli bacteria bring danger by causing the organ to swell.
In women, the intestinal exit is very close to the urethral exit. This makes it easier for the Escherichia coli bacteria to enter the urethra. Women are therefore more likely than men to have cystitis.
How can you detect cystitis?
There are different signs of cystitis. Most common is the need to urinate more often. Typical complaints are:
- Pain or burning when urinating,
- Pain in the lower abdomen.
Other signs of cystitis may include:
- the urine is cloudy or smelly,
- there may be blood in the urine.
What can you do about cystitis?
Cystitis can be of varying degrees. Mild cystitis often cures in otherwise healthy people on their own. You need to keep warm and take in a lot of fluid. Drinking a lot is important as it flushes the bacteria out of the bladder.
Certain home remedies can also help with healing. You can get bladder tea or kidney tea. These teas can help with cystitis.
Caution: Cystitis can also be dangerous. Severe cystitis can lead to further diseases in the body. Cystitis is more dangerous in:
- pregnant women,
- people with a weak immune system,
- people with certain other diseases
- and for men
Therefore, in the case of signs of cystitis, these individuals should always talk to a doctor.
Some people have cystitis very often. In this case, it may be necessary to see your doctor who can then prescribe medications for cystitis like antibiotics.
How can you avoid cystitis?
There are a lot of ways to reduce the risk of cystitis. These include:
- drinking enough water,
- going to the toilet several times a day,
- wiping with the toilet paper from the vagina to the anus, not the other way around,
- wearing cotton underwear,
- washing your underwear at 60 degrees,
- keeping warm,
- immediately wearing dry clothes after bathing.