A lower urinary tract infection is an infection of the urethra, bladder, or both. The urethra is the tube that carries urine from the bladder out of the body. The bladder and urethra are part of the urinary tract. For this reason, a bladder infection is called a lower urinary tract infection.
With such an infection, there is often a burning sensation when urinating, as well as pressure or pain in the lower abdomen. Very often, the frequent or false urge to urinate can occur, when the amount of urine produced is very small. Perhaps the urine has an unpleasant odor, sometimes there may even be blood in it.
The most common cause of a bladder infection is a bacterial infection that enters the bladder through the urethra. There are various factors that increase the risk of a bladder infection. Among them: are insufficient fluid intake, sexual contact, poor hygiene, kidney or bladder stones, pregnancy, menopause, diabetes mellitus, the presence of a catheter, genetic defects in the urinary tract or kidneys, and chemicals.
Women are more likely to suffer from bladder infections than men because their urethra is shorter. Thus, it is easier for bacteria from the external environment to enter the bladder.
Although it is widely believed that a cold or a draft can cause a bladder infection, this is not the case.
As a preventive measure, drinking two liters of water a day is recommended, as well as frequent urination to “flush” the bacteria. Urination should be performed as soon as possible after the need arises, urine should not be retained.