Best Ways To Prevent UTIs And Get Rid Of Them Without Antibiotics

Medically reviewed by Richard Honaker M.D.

Home Remedies For UTIs

If you are looking for some effective natural remedies for UTI treatment, the following article explores some of the best ways to prevent UTIs and get rid of them without antibiotics. However, keep in mind that if a UTI is not treated correctly, it may result in serious health issues, such as decreased kidney function. Antibiotics are sometimes needed, but there are UTI remedies you can give a go instead.

1. Drink lots of water

Ensuring hydration helps flush bacteria out of your system. Drink water throughout the day to get rid of the bacteria, treating bladder infection symptoms. In addition, drinking plenty of water will result in frequent urination, helping to eliminate the infection by making the urine dilute and preventing the bacteria from multiplying in the bladder.

2. Drink cranberry juice

Cranberry juice is undoubtedly a common alternative UTI remedy. Cranberry contains a compound that stops the bacteria from adhering to your bladder hence helping your body flush bacteria out. It is also a natural immune-boosting antioxidant.
But not all cranberry juices are created equal. There are a lot of cranberry juices in your local supermarket that is full of sugar. So, where can you find good UTI-fighting cranberry juice? Your local health food store!
To get the most out of cranberry juice as one of the best alternative UTI remedies, dilute the juice from 1 to 8 with water. Then drink slowly all day long. This may help prevent or possibly treat your urinary tract infection. Drinking unsweetened cranberry juice is considered very beneficial, and unsweetened cranberry juice is also available. Get cranberry pills if you are not a big fan of drinking juice. According to studies, cranberries significantly reduced the incidence of UTIs in susceptible populations.

3. Consume probiotics

Probiotics can help restore the human body’s normal flora, thereby helping one recover from an infection. You can also take probiotic supplements to help promote the healthy bacteria naturally in your body. Food items rich in probiotics include yogurt, kefir, kimchi, or kombucha. They are also available in the form of supplements.

4. Consume Vitamin C

Vitamin C can aid in eliminating bacteria because of its acidic properties. Furthermore, Vitamin C has an effect on the functioning of the immune system, helping to fight off infections in the body.

5. Consume Garlic extract, D-Mannose, or bearberry leaf supplements

Garlic has antibacterial properties, and consuming it may help combat urinary tract infections. In addition, D-Mannose and bearberry leaf have proved effective in treating UTIs and preventing their recurrence.

6. Avoid caffeine and alcohol

Caffeine and alcohol can make your urine more concentrated, worsening the infection. Therefore, it is best to avoid such beverages to prevent a UTI.

7. Maintain good genital hygiene

Ensure to wipe from front to back to prevent bacteria from entering your private area. Also, emptying your bladder after having intercourse may help prevent a UTI.

8. Rid your diet of sugar

Sugar fuels the bacteria that may cause a UTI. If you get many UTIs, avoiding sugar may help get your urinary tract infections under control. A simple diet is best for preventing UTIs. Eat a healthy diet of nutrient-rich foods, such as vegetables, fruits, soups, and omega-3 fatty acid fish like salmon.

9. Boost immune health to beat your UTI

It is also lovely to give it a whirl instead of overusing antibiotics. Remember, over-antibiotic use can lead to antibiotic resistance. If you get UTIs often and always take antibiotics, it could add up to future resistance. Boost your overall immune health by living a healthy lifestyle, exercising, and eating clean.

10. Application of a heating pad

Applying a heating pad to the abdominal region may relieve the dull ache that sometimes accompanies bladder infections. But, again, this is something that can work well along with other remedies and medications.

Best Ways to Prevent a UTI

Women are more likely to develop UTIs than men. The leading causes of UTI in women include having a shorter urethra, making the bacteria easier to travel to the bladder and resulting in an infection. Additionally, the urethra is near the rectum, where the UTI-causing bacteria reside.
Moreover, menopause and specific birth control methods, such as spermicide or diaphragms, can also increase the risk of developing a UTI.
While the symptoms of  UTIs are not pleasant, they are often preventable. Check out our top five ways to prevent UTIs.

1. Wipe front to back

Most little girls have the rule drilled into their heads from their early potty training days but it really can make a difference. One of the reasons women are more likely to suffer from UTIs is the proximity of the urethra to the anus.
By wiping front to back women are discouraging bacteria from entering their urinary tract each time they wipe.

2. Empty your bladder after sex

Sexually active women are more likely to get a UTI than women who are not sexually active. The risk increases when a woman starts getting intimate with a new partner.
Peeing after sex can help flush out any bacteria that has entered the urinary tract before it hits the bladder. While peeing before and after sex is important to help prevent UTIs there is no reason to jump out of bed to run to the restroom.

3. Have protected sex

While the risk of UTIs is much higher in women, men can also experience UTIs. Men who engage in unprotected sex with women with vaginal infections may be at a higher risk for UTIs. Many of the symptoms of a UTI may mimic those of other sexually transmitted infections. Failing to get a UTI treated can lead to serious consequences and in some rare circumstances may lead to death. The vaginal infections likely to result in male UTIs are colonization with a uropathogenic or an STI. More likely risks are anal intercourse and an uncircumcised penis.

4. Wear cotton underwear

Cotton is considered the best underwear fabric. It is breathable and helps prevent irritation to the vulva as well. Other fabrics like nylon trap moisture and can serve as breeding areas for the bacteria. Maintaining genital health is equally essential to preventing infections.

5. Change your birth control

UTIs occur mainly during a woman’s reproductive and post-menopausal years. Women who experience recurring UTIs can face an unending cycle of symptoms, diagnosis, and antibiotics. This cycle can often only be broken when the root cause of the infection is determined.
Changes in estrogen levels, low estrogen levels, and the use of birth control can contribute to urinary tract infections.
If you have tried lifestyle changes and are still experiencing frequent UTIs (three or more in 12 months or two or more in six months) you may want to speak to your healthcare provider about changing your birth control methods.

Over-the-counter UTI Medicine

Commonly the UTI symptoms include pain and discomfort while urinating, increased frequency of urination, cloudy urine, blood in urine, foul-smelling urine, or incomplete emptying of the bladder. Such symptoms might be relieved by taking some over-the-counter medications such as:

1. Phenazopyridine (Pyridium): 
This is an over-the-counter medication used to relieve the burning sensation while urinating. It works by numbing the lining of the urinary tract to make. This medication changes the urine color, turning it into a bright orange, so it is best to know this beforehand to prevent yourself from getting a scare.

2. Over-the-counter pain relievers:
Acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Advil) can help relieve the pain caused by UTIs in some patients.

3.Methenamine/sodium salicylate/benzoic acid
This is commonly available over the counter as Cystex helps ease the pain.
Methenamine helps slow the growth of bacteria. Sodium salicylate is a pain reliever/ nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID). This combination medicine is used to relieve symptoms of a UTI, such as pain or burning while urinating and increased frequency.

When to Consult a Doctor 

It’s vital to note that these products are only meant to relieve pain associated with UTIs, but antibiotics may be required for treatment. However, it is advisable to consult a doctor for the appropriate treatment to prevent complications.

If your UTI is not going away, connect with us right away to get advice on how to get rid of a UTI quickly and for urinary tract infection treatment!

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Related: Get rid of UTIs quickly

FAQs On How To Prevent UTIs Answered By Our Team Of Doctors

How to prevent UTIs after sex?

Some measures that help prevent a UTI after intercourse include:
Urinate before and after having intercourse. This will help flush bacteria out and prevent them from entering your urinary tract.
Clean your genital and anal region or wash thoroughly with water.
Consider switching your birth control if you are using a diaphragm or spermicide, especially if you are prone to developing UTIs.

How to prevent UTIs when you feel them coming?

Wear cotton underwear or loose clothes.
Increase your water intake.
Urinate frequently, don’t hold the urine for a long duration.
Drink cranberry juice, take vitamin C or probiotics.
Avoid using products that cause vaginal irritation, such as feminine care products and wipe from front to back.

How do you prevent UTIs after a period?

To prevent a UTI after a period, maintaining genital hygiene is essential. Tampons and pads should be changed regularly to prevent bacterial growth. Ensuring good hydration helps keep UTIs at bay as well.

How to prevent UTIs in men?

Some measures that help to prevent UTIs in men include:
Urinating frequently.
Drinking plenty of water/fluids.
Maintaining genital hygiene, such as cleaning the area under the foreskin if not circumcised.
Wiping from front to back.
Using condoms during intercourse.

How to prevent UTIs during pregnancy?

Ensuring hydration, drinking cranberry juice, wearing cotton underwear, emptying the bladder before and after intercourse and avoiding scented products and douching help prevent UTIs during pregnancy. In addition, make sure that you eat healthily so that your immune system functions optimally, which can help reduce occurrences of UTIs as well.

How long does a UTI last without antibiotics?

Uncomplicated UTIs can sometimes resolve on their own. However, the duration can vary, and it can take a few days to a week to recover. If your symptoms do not improve within a few days, it is best to consult a doctor and start treatment immediately.

How long can a UTI go untreated?

Some UTIs go away within a week without treatment, but leaving the infection untreated has its risks. That is why it is best to consult a doctor if you develop any symptoms of a UTI.

How long does it take to flush out a UTI?

In some cases, increasing water intake can help improve the symptoms within 1-2 days, but usually, antibiotics are required, and symptoms improve within 2-3 days after starting the medication.

How long does UTI bleeding last?

The blood in urine resolves once the infection is cured. If antibiotics are started on time, symptoms resolve within a few days.

Can you treat a UTI at home?

Home remedies and over the counter medication can relieve UTI symptoms, but you don’t have to rely on these remedies. The good news is that you can also get your UTI treated right at home by connecting with a doctor at Your Doctor Online. In addition, you will be prescribed antibiotics to treat your infection!

Chat with a doctor and get a UTI prescription delivered to your preferred pharmacy!

Doctors Treating this Issue
dr asim cheema

Dr. Asim Cheema

Internal Medicine

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