Bladder infections or urinary tract infections are a common health threat especially with women. The urinary tract of a woman is much shorter than that of a man. Therefore, women are more prone to the possibility of bacterial growth and infection. Most women get very upset when confronted with bladder infections because it can be a recurrent problem. However, it is not a dreaded disease as it is easily curable with prescribed antibiotics. On the other hand, when this condition afflicts men, it may be hard to cure. The sure causes of this medical condition are not fully known. Scientists are of the opinion that bacteria from the digestive or vaginal tract enter the urethra, the tube that carries the urine, and infects the disinfected urine. Another cause of bladder infection is sexual intercourse. Here the bacteria in the vagina may get transported to the bladder thus causing infection in the bladder. Read on to get to know more about the causes of bladder infections here.
Bladder Infection Causes
Bladder infection or cystitis is typically caused by escherichia coli (E. coli). This is a type of bacteria is usually found to be living in the gastrointestinal tract (The gut).
All women are susceptible to bladder infections at some point of time because of their anatomy. This is because the urethra and anus are located in close proximity and the distance from the urethral aperture to the bladder is also short.
A small percentage of women are more prone and may have some kind of anatomical predicament that would incline them to bladder infections. Your general practitioner will be able to establish from your medical history, physical examination, and simple tests whether this is the cause behind your infections.
Sexual activity or intercourse may make possible the transfer of bacteria from the anal-vaginal area to the urethra and thus to the bladder. It may also aggravate tissues, thus making them more vulnerable to infection.
Birth Control Methods
If your diaphragm is not fixed correctly, it may put pressure on the bladder and as a result amplify your chances of an infection. The chemical compounds in spermicides may also aggravate the vaginal tissues and make them more vulnerable to infection.
Low Water Intake
One of the major causes for bladder infections is low intake of water. When you intake less quantities of water, your chances of urination is also low. This in turn helps bacteria to enter the bladder and have more time to reproduce and to take hold, causing an infection.
Tight clothing and pantyhose are also known to be causes of infections of the bladder. Such clothes have a propensity of trapping heat. This in turn irritates sensitive tissues and helps bacterial growth.
The occurrence of bladder infection can increase after menopause when breakdown in vaginal tissues begins to crop up due to a reduction in estrogen levels. During menopause, a lady’s estrogen levels steadily turn down. This stops ovulation and menstruation, but it also brings about other physical changes. The drop in estrogen levels causes the bladder to become less flexible. This in turn may result in a person being incapable of completely emptying the bladder, which allows the growth of bacteria. Chances of the bladder developing small abscesses, called cystoceles, which can hold urine and bacteria are also high during this period.