We include products we think are useful for our readers. If you buy through links on this page, we may earn a small commission. Here’s our process.
Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are very common, affecting about
Though UTIs can affect anyone,
Common UTI symptoms include:
- a burning sensation when peeing
- frequent urination
- cloudy or dark urine
- urine with a strong odor
- a feeling of incomplete bladder emptying
- pelvic pain
Though UTIs are
In this article, we review six home remedies you can use to fight UTIs.
This is because regular urination can help flush bacteria from the urinary tract to prevent infection. When you’re dehydrated, you aren’t urinating as often, which can create a breeding ground for bacteria.
To stay hydrated and meet your fluid needs, it’s best to drink water throughout the day and always when you’re thirsty.
Benefits of drinking more fluids for UTI
Drinking plenty of liquids can decrease the risk of UTIs by making you pee more, which helps remove bacteria from the urinary tract.
Some evidence shows that increasing your intake of vitamin C
Vitamin C is thought to work by increasing the acidity of the urine, thereby killing off the bacteria that cause infection.
The study found that vitamin C had a protective effect, cutting the risk of UTIs by more than half in those taking vitamin C, compared with the control group.
Fruits and vegetables are especially high in vitamin C and are a good way to increase your intake.
Red peppers, oranges, grapefruit, and kiwifruit all contain the full recommended amount of vitamin C in just one serving.
Despite these studies, there is still more research needed to prove the effectiveness of vitamin C for reducing UTIs. There are
Benefits of vitamin C for UTI
Increasing vitamin C intake may decrease the risk of UTIs by making the urine more acidic, thus killing infection-causing bacteria.
Drinking unsweetened cranberry juice is one of the most well-known natural remedies for urinary tract infections. If drinking unsweetened cranberry juice isn’t your thing, you can also take it in capsule form.
However, some other studies suggest that cranberry juice may not be as effective in the prevention of UTIs.
Although the evidence is mixed, cranberry juice may help reduce the risk of UTIs. Whether they actually work as a treatment for an active UTI is less cut and dry.
Keep in mind that any possible benefits of this home remedy only apply to unsweetened cranberry juice, rather than sweetened varieties. Cranberry juice with added sugars won’t help treat an active UTI.
Benefits of cranberries for UTI
Some studies show that cranberries could help reduce the risk of UTIs by preventing bacteria from adhering to the urinary tract.
Probiotics are beneficial microorganisms that are consumed through food or supplements. They can promote a healthy balance of bacteria in your gut.
Probiotics are available in supplement form or can be found in fermented foods, such as kefir, kimchi, kombucha, and probiotic yogurt.
Some studies also show that certain strains of probiotics may decrease the risk of UTIs.
Antibiotics, the main line of defense against UTIs, can cause disturbances in levels of gut bacteria. Probiotics may be
Benefits of probiotics for UTI
Probiotics could help prevent UTIs and are beneficial for restoring gut bacteria after antibiotic treatment.
Preventing urinary tract infections starts with practicing a few good bathroom and hygiene habits.
First, it’s important not to hold urine for too long. This can lead to a buildup of bacteria,
Peeing after sexual intercourse can also
Additionally, those who are prone to UTIs should
Finally, when using the toilet, especially for those with female genitalia, make sure you wipe front to back. Wiping from back to front can
Benefits of healthy hygiene for UTI
Urinating frequently and after sexual intercourse can reduce the risk of UTI. Careful wiping when you use the toilet may also help decrease the risk of UTI.
Several natural supplements may decrease the risk of developing a UTI.
Here are a few supplements that have been studied and are all available in capsule form:
- D-Mannose. D-Mannose is a type of sugar that is found in cranberries. Research suggests it’s effective in treating UTIs and preventing recurrence.
- Bearberry leaf. Bearberry leaf is also known as uva ursi. One 1993 study showed that a combination of bearberry leaf, dandelion root, and dandelion leaf decreased UTI recurrence.
- Cranberry extract. Like cranberry juice, cranberry extract works by preventing bacteria from adhering to the urinary tract.
- Garlic extract.
Researchshows garlic and garlic extract to have antimicrobial properties and suggests it may be able to block the growth of bacteria to prevent UTIs.
Benefits of natural supplements for UTI
D-Mannose, bearberry leaf, and cranberry extract are natural supplements that have been shown to prevent UTIs and decrease recurrence.
UTI supplement options
Read our full review of Uqora, a company that focuses on developing natural supplements for UTI prevention.
Why are women at a higher risk for UTI?
People with female reproductive organs are at a
The female urethra is also quite close to female reproductive organs. That means bacteria from sexual intercourse as well as products like spermicide can be in close contact with the urethra and bladder.
Should UTI treatment vary according to what’s causing the infection?
Your UTI treatment may vary according to what’s causing the infection. Certain UTIs, especially chronic and recurring ones, will need antibiotic treatment as opposed to a simple home remedies.
If you’re prescribed antibiotics to treat a UTI, a doctor may choose an antibiotic that’s specific to the type of bacteria that’s triggering your infection.
Will over-the-counter products (OTC) products like AZO get rid of my UTI?
Maybe. OTC products like AZO contain active ingredients that have antibacterial properties. In the case of AZO, the active ingredient is a compound called methenamine.
In combination with an anti-inflammatory compound, these products are meant to help your body kill harmful bacteria.
For powerful bacterial infections, the active ingredients in OTC products just might not be enough. Also most of these products advertise as a protection against UTI, not necessarily a treatment for current, active infections.
Can you get rid of a UTI naturally at home, or do you need antibiotics?
Sometimes, you can get rid of a UTI naturally by resting, drinking lots of water, taking dietary supplements, and giving the infection some time to heal.
However, there are certain situations where “wait and see” just isn’t an acceptable approach. Untreated UTI can cause dangerous complications, including sepsis.
When do I need to see a doctor for a UTI?
UTIs do have a risk of severe complications if they’re left untreated. UTIs that affect your kidneys and bladder need to be treated by a professional. Don’t ignore signs of a severe infection.
Signs that it’s time to get in touch with a doctor include:
- a fever over 103°F (39.4°C)
- blood in your urine
Urinary tract infections are a common problem and can be frustrating, particularly if they keep recurring.
Home remedies and OTC products can help prevent UTIs from happening, but they can’t always completely get rid of the bacteria causing your infection. If you’re trying home remedies but still having symptoms, you need to get a doctor involved to prevent more severe complications.
Contact a doctor right away if your symptoms include:
- a fever over 103°F (39.4°C)
- back pain or pain in your side
- shaking or chills
- pelvic pressure or pain
- blood in your urine
Staying hydrated, practicing health-promoting habits, and supplementing your diet with some UTI-fighting ingredients are good ways to lower your risk of these infections in the future.