Health

Prevent UTI in winters using these expert-backed tips

Health, according to the World Health Organization, is “a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease and infirmity”.[1] A variety of definitions have been used for different purposes over time. Health can be promoted by encouraging healthful activities, such as regular physical exercise and adequate sleep,[2] and by reducing or avoiding unhealthful activities or situations, such as smoking or excessive stress. Some factors affecting health are due to individual choices, such as whether to engage in a high-risk behavior, while others are due to structural causes, such as whether the society is arranged in a way that makes it easier or harder for people to get necessary healthcare services. Still other factors are beyond both individual and group choices, such as genetic disorders.

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UTI or urinary tract infection can aggravate and be really very painful in winter. Here are some tips to prevent it.

Winter season with its many perks has its own allure. As the weather gets better, appetite and digestion improve, and one may like to step outside and explore nature. While the season keep many discomforts associated with hot and humid weather at bay, it is the time where certain ailments from arthritis, heart issues, respiratory problems as well as skin issues are on rise. Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are also common in winters, but can be avoided by following certain tips.

The risk of UTIs in winters increases due to cold-induced dieresis which is your body’s way of preventing hypothermia by decreasing blood flow to the skin and concentrating it around the organs to keep them warm.

UTIs can be prevented by hydrating yourself well even when you do not feel thirsy too frequently. One should also not avoid the urge to urinate as that may also increase risk of a bladder infection. Good personal hygiene and eating food rich in Vitamin C can help you keep the disease away.

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Dealing with UTI is not as difficult as you think. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

“When your kidneys have more waste to filter out of your blood, they tend to produce more urine than their normal capacity. Thus, there is an increased urge to urinate when it’s cold,” says Dr Santosh Palkar, Consultant – Urologist, Zen Multi speciality.

The symptoms of UTIs have increased urination, inability to empty your bladder completely, foul urine odor, cloudy or dark urine, and fever.

Here are some of the tips you must follow to avoid UTI in winter season as per Dr Palkar.

  1. Drink around 10 glasses of water each day
    Do you avoid drinking water in winter because it’s too cold? You might be making a mistake as it may increase your risk of UTI. Staying hydrated will help your urinary system to flush toxic waste effectively, and keep away the urinary tract infections. Try to drink as much as water you can.

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    Water is key when it comes to a healthy body. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

  2. Avoid holding the urine for too long
    Urinate as soon as you get the urge to go to the washroom to reduce your risk of bladder infection.


  3. Good personal hygiene
    It is imperative for you to follow good hygiene practices. After visiting the toilet, make sure to clean your genital area thoroughly.
  4. Wear cotton underwear
    It will be beneficial for you to wear cotton underwear which will allow the crotch area to stay dry. Trapping too much moisture in that area can make an excellent breeding ground for bacteria. So, opt for skin-friendly fabrics only.

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    Ladies, keep a tab on your panties! Image courtesy: Shutterstock

  5. Load up on Vitamin C
    Eating foods loaded with vitamin C can boost immunity and increase the level of acidity of your urine, eradicating the bacteria that can cause infections. Eat oranges, kiwi, red peppers, and grapefruit to stay healthy.
  6. Go for cranberries
    It is one of the potent remedies for UTIs. This fruit is packed with proanthocyanidins, a chemical compound that allows the prevention of E. Coli bacteria from getting attached to the bladder, and reduces the instances of infection.

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