When an abnormal growth of bacteria occurs within the bladder it can lead to a bladder infection – or cystitis. Females typically experience bladder infections more than males, and bladder infections are the most common form of bacterial infections experienced by humans.
Bladder infections can either be simple or complicated. A simple bladder infection only occurs in healthy females with normal urinary systems. It is rare that healthy males will experience a bladder infection, so they are put into the complicated bladder infection category.
Simple bladder infection: Simple bladder infections occur when bacteria travels to the bladder. The urinary system in women makes them more prone to develop simple bladder infections in comparison to men. In women the urethra is close to the rectum where bacteria can travel from. Sexual intercourse can move the bacteria into the bladder as can wiping from back to front after a bowel movement. Women are recommended to wipe front to back to avoid having bacteria move into the bladder.
Complicated bladder infections: Complicated bladder infections occur in individuals who have abnormal urinary systems. In males, the long urethra should prevent bladder infections, so if a male develops a bladder infection it is considered abnormal. If normal flow of urine is blocked in males, the bladder will retain urine along with bacteria that is normally expelled through urination. Nerve damage, spinal cord injury and disease can block urine flow. Another common reason for bladder infections in males is an enlarged prostate which can also block urine flow.
Symptoms of a simple bladder infection include:
Symptoms of a complicated bladder infection can be similar to those of a simple bladder infection, but individuals may experience additional symptoms like fever, nausea, vomiting, back pain and confusion if bacterial infection travels to the bloodstream.
Treating a simple bladder infection involves the use of antibiotics, but the experience can be painful, so it is best to prevent them at all costs. Here are some natural tips to prevent a bladder infection.