4 Symptoms That Suggest You Have a Urinary Tract Infection

May 7th 2016

When caught in time, urinary tract infections are often treatable with antibiotics. Understanding the common symptoms that indicate urinary tract infections can help to ensure suffers recognize their symptoms and seek prompt medical treatment.

Painful Urination

Painful urination is a common urinary tract infection symptom that may also be accompanied by fever. Urinary discomfort can range from a severe burning sensation when urinating to sharp, stabbing pain. It is also common for individuals with urinary tract infections to experience continual urges to urinate, yet only pass small amounts of urine.

Blood in Urine

Bloody urine is another common indicator of a urinary tract infection. This symptom occurs when blood cells make their way into the urine via the kidneys or other areas of the urinary tract system during periods of infection, physical trauma or illness. Blood in the urine can also indicate kidney disease, so it is imperative for anyone suffering from symptoms to seek immediate medical attention.

Pelvic or Rectal Pain

Pelvic cramps and rectal pain are common symptoms of urinary tract infections and are often accompanied by back pain. Pelvic cramps are more common in women, while men with urinary tract infections typically experience dull, throbbing pain in the rectal area. Back pain can also indicate a urinary tract infection has spread to the kidneys, especially if symptoms are accompanied by chills, vomiting and flushed skin.

Cloudy or Dark Urine

Urinary tract infections can also cause the urine to become cloudy as the bacteria multiplies in the urinary tract and bladder. Cloudy urine is often accompanied by a foul, unfamiliar odor or a strong urine scent. In certain cases, urinary tract infections cause the urine to become dark, often resembling cola or tea.

Preventative Measures

While urinary tract infections can develop in anyone, hygiene practices and basic lifestyle changes may help to prevent recurrence. Hygiene practices include showering instead of bathing, avoiding scented hygiene sprays, wiping from front to back after bowel movements and keeping the genital area as clean and dry as possible. Lifestyle changes include drinking extra water, drinking one glass of cranberry juice per day and avoiding birth control methods such as lubricated condoms and diaphragms.


Urinary tract infections are bacterial infections that occur in the urinary tract and bladder. The infections occur when bacteria makes its way into the urinary tract and begins to multiply. Bacteria can enter the urinary tract in a variety of ways that includes diaphragm use, condoms that cause skin irritation, improper hygiene, spermicides and wiping from back to front following a bowel movement. In most cases, urinary tract infections require antibiotics, so it is important to understand the common symptoms of the condition to ensure the appropriate steps are taken in seeking medical treatment.

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