An inflammation of the structures that make up the urinary tract is called a urinary tract infection. You may also see them referred to as UTIs or bladder infections. They are common conditions, especially among the elderly, infants and pregnant women. A urinary tract infection can be caused by several types of common bacteria, including Proteus mirabilis.
Urinary Tract Infections
The urethra is the tube that connects to the bladder and carries urine out of the body. Sometimes, bacteria is pushed or spread into the urethra. In most cases, your immune system will handle the bacteria before they have a chance to do any damage. When it does not, the bacteria reproduce and spread. They also begin to attach to the urinary lining, irritating and inflaming the urethra, bladder and kidneys.
Proteus mirabilis is a type of bacteria that can be found in water, soil and your intestinal tract. As a part of the normal bacteria that is found in the intestines, Proteus mirabilis aids in the digestion process. However, when it is spread into the urinary system, it can cause infection. This can happen when the bacteria are present in the stool that is excreted from your bowels, and the bacteria are spread to the urethra. This can happen if you wipe back to front after a bowel movement or if you do not change your underwear often. It can also happen through normal sexual contact.
The first sign that you have a Proteus mirabilis urinary tract infection will often be in your urine. You may notice that your urine is suddenly coming out darker or smellier than before. In some cases, you will even see blood in your urine. Another sign of a urinary tract infection is the increased urge to urinate, even if little or no urine comes out. You should also not be surprised if you feel a burning sensation when you do urinate. It is common with most types of urinary tract infections.
Treating your Proteus mirabilis urinary tract infection depends on how serious it has become. Lower urinary tract infections, those affecting the bladder and urethra, are easier to treat than upper urinary tract infections. In most cases, your health care provider will prescribe an antibiotic, such as trimethoprim/sulfamethoxazole for up to 2 weeks. If the Proteus mirabilis have spread into your kidneys, you have developed an upper urinary tract infection. Upper urinary tract infections are much more serious and are usually treated with intravenous antibiotics and a hospital stay.
Preventing a Proteus mirabilis urinary tract infection starts with keeping good hygiene. Wipe front to back after a bowel movement to keep the bacteria in your stool or around your anus from being spread into the urethra. Keep your genitals clean and dry. Wash them at least once a day and after sex with mild soap and warm water. You can also promote a healthy urinary system by using cranberry or vitamin C supplements.
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