Bladder infection symptoms
Bladder infection symptoms are without doubt considered as among the most painful and unpleasant. These symptoms arise from bacterial infections that affect the lower part of the urinary tract, a condition commonly referred to as cystitis or bladder infection.
Though the medical tem UTI (Urinary tract infection) is commonly interchanged with the term bladder infection, this term broadly refers to the infection of the entire urinary tract which, in addition to bladder infection, incorporates the infection of the urethra, ureters, and kidney.
Being a bacterial infection, the bladder is easily curable. However, the ease in curing this condition highly depends on how soon the symptoms of bladder infection are detected. These symptoms are sometimes invisible or difficult to detect, especially in elderly people and children.
Bladder infections are very common in women and rarely affect men. Studies indicate that one in five women will suffer bladder infections in her life. This is a mystery whose cause the doctors’ still find difficulties in explaining. However, one explanation given on the cause of this inequality is the anatomical difference in the length of the male and female urethra. The female urethra is shorter than the male one, this makes it easier for the bacteria to reach the bladder in women.
How blunder infections occur
The human bladder’s most primary function involves collecting urine from the human kidney before the urine is excreted from the body. While the urine collected from the kidney is sterile, incidences of bladder infections can sometimes occur. These infections are mainly result from bacterial invasion of the bladder through the urinary tract.
Urinary tract infections (bladder infection included) is mainly caused by a bacterial agent known as Escherichia coli, otherwise referred to as E-coli. The symptoms of bladder infections occur when the e-coli bacteria enter the body through the penis or vagina, move up the urethra, and reach the bladder. Though in normal circumstances the bacteria are flushed out before they can reach the blunder via urinating, there are several reason why this may not happen. On reaching the bladder the bacteria multiply and cause inflammation which leads to the infection of the bladder.
While e-coli bacteria is the leading agent that cause bladder infections, there are other bacteria, fungi, and viruses that rarely cause bladder infections.
Causes of bladder infection
The five major causes of infection to the bladder that will prompt the symptoms of bladder infections to appear include:Irritation of the urethra which may arise from several substances that potentially causes soreness to the urethra. These substances may include soaps, bubble bath, clothing, or stool. The irritation to the urethra makes it easier for the e-coli bacteria to invade.Holding the urine in. while the urine flushes the bacteria out, holding it in allows the bacteria more time to reach the bladder and also multiply inside the bladder.An anatomic abnormality occurring during the development of the uterus can also cause bladder infections. This can be if the tubes connecting the kidneys to the bladder, or urethra, fail to develop properly or are not hooked up properly. Such an abnormality increases a person’s risk of developing bladder infections.Constipation or large amounts of stool being held in the colon can also cause bladder infection. The stool presses up against the urethra and bladder causing difficulties for the urine in the bladder to drain completely. This allows the multiplication of the bacteria within the blunder.Improper wiping can also increase the stool and bacteria around your urethra, this creates chance for the bacteria to move up the urethra towards the blunder.
In women, bladder infections can also be caused by:Use of the membrane as a birth control measure. The device squeezes the bladder and restricts urine flow during urination. This causes the presence of stationary urine within the bladder. The residual contaminated urine serves as a perfect breeding spot for e-coli bacteria. This form of bladder infection is known as honeymoon cystitis.Bladder infections can also occur in pregnant women. This occurs as a result of growth of the fetus which expands over the pregnancy period and then presses on the bladder. This cause an obstruction on the flow of urine, which may cause the multiplication of harmful bacteria.
Symptoms of bladder infections
Common symptoms of bladder infections may include:Dysuria: this symptom is associated with discomfort or a burning sensation when one is urinating. This is the single most common symptom of a bladder infection.Having a frequent urge to urinate.Getting an urgent desire to urinate.Passing only a few drops of urine at a time or getting the feeling of not being able to urinate despite the urge to urinate.Passing out urine that is cloudy, foul smelling or cola colored- this is a sign of blood in the urine.Bladder spasm.Lower abdominal discomfort or cramps, pelvic pain in women, and rectal pain in men.In elderly people the symptoms can be invisible or less specific, in most cases these symptoms are blamed on old age. However, old people suffering from bladder infections become incontinent, lethargic, or mentally confused. The best way to diagnose if these symptoms are as a result of bladder infection is by seeking medical attention.In young children the symptoms of bladder infections are also less obvious and the infection may only manifest itself in a fever and in some cases new onset of urinary incontinence. Medical assistance is also required to properly diagnose bladder infection in this case. Bladder infections in infants may also cause poor feeding, oversleeping, and infants may develop symptoms of jaundice.
If not treated properly and soon enough, the bacterial infections eventually spread to the kidney causing kidney infections. This condition is referred to as pyelonephritis.
Urinary tract infections involving infections to the kidney are very serious and can cause kidney damage. In addition to experiencing the symptoms mentioned above, other symptoms that will appear in this case include:Severe abdominal pain.Chills, shaking or night sweats.Nausea and vomiting.Fatigue, headaches, or a general ill feelingFever.Flank, back, or groin painFlushed, warm, or reddened skinMental changes or confusion, especially in the elderly people.