A Soak Could Help You Find Some Relief Urinary tract infections are one of the most common outpatient consultations in the United States. They are one of the most common causes of fever in the young and elderly and can cause urinary incontinence in women. Yearly, around 250,000 cases of kidney infections or pyelonephritis occur among women in the United States. Costs for the diagnosis and management of urinary tract infections in the United States can reach up to a total of $2-3 billion dollars a year. It might seem like a simple infection, but it can be really costly when you think of it from that scale. It is an essential infection to treat because it can lead to serious complications such as sepsis and renal damage if left untreated. That is why a lot of other remedies are being tested to see if they can alleviate symptoms of urinary tract infections. This article will discuss how Epsom salt baths are good for UTIs, what benefits Epsom salt baths have, and how to prepare an Epsom salt bath. What are Urinary Tract Infections? What are the Symptoms? Urinary tract infections are infections of the parts that serve as the passageway of the urine out of our bodies; this includes the kidney, bladder, ureters, and urethra. Urine is a sterile substance that passes out of our bodies; therefore, the introduction of bacteria can lead to a bladder infection, inflammation, and pus formation that can lead to various symptoms. Symptoms of a urinary tract infection include pain and burning sensation while urinating, cloudy or foul-smelling urine, blood in the urine, and abdominal pain. What are Epsom Salts? What Do They Do? Epsom salt or magnesium sulfate is a white, crystalline water-soluble chemical compound that has been used for centuries to treat various illnesses. Epsom salts are commonly used to relieve sore muscles, stiff joints, itching, skin irritation, and sunburn and are used as relief for headaches or foot pain. Its uses in the human body are varied, and it has been found to provide relief for various ailments, which include urinary tract infections. How is an Epsom Salt Bath Good for UTIs? What Benefits do Epsom Salt Baths Have? Epsom salts provide several benefits for treating urinary tract infections. The primary benefit of using Epsom salt baths for bladder infections or urinary tract infections is to relieve pain. Epsom salt baths can help relieve pain and discomfort associated with UTIs. UTIs present with a burning sensation, pain while urinating, and cloudy urine. The warm, calming nature of Epsom salt baths has been shown to help relieve this. [youmaylike] If you soak in an Epsom salt bath, it can be helpful to reduce inflammation as well. Because they are rich in magnesium, they can help cleanse the urinary tract and aid in the healing process. The increased concentration of magnesium sulfate is believed to help change the environment in the urinary tract, which can lead to conditions unfavorable for bacteria to grow. It can help prevent bacteria from growing or multiplying when you soak in an Epsom salt bath and has a disinfectant property. Epsom salt baths can also improve the circulation of blood in the body. It can cause dilation of the blood vessels leading to improved blood flow, which also promotes the passage of cells that help in the body’s immunity. Epsom salt baths provide an overall relaxing and calming experience that can leave you feeling detoxified as well. Are Epsom Salt Baths the Answer to UTIs? Although Epsom salt baths may relieve urinary tract infection symptoms, there is not enough evidence to recommend using Epsom salts over established treatments like antibiotics. Epsom salt baths are currently home remedies that can be adjuncts to treatment but cannot be used to replace the treatment of urinary tract infections with antibiotic medications. In order to treat the infection, you should still take an antibiotic regimen prescribed by your physician. Are Epsom Salt Baths Risk-Free? Do Epsom Salt Baths Have Any Side Effects? Generally, Epsom salt baths are safe and don’t have a lot of serious complications. However, you still need to make sure that Epsom salt baths are safe for you. The most common side effects of Epsom salt baths include allergic reactions. So if you have an allergy to Epsom salt, it is better that you avoid this. It can also aggravate pain or discomfort if you have an open wound or breaks or scratches in the skin. If you have these, stay away from Epsom salt baths to avoid further complications. How Do You Prepare an Epsom Salt Bath? The general way to prepare an Epsom salt bath is to dissolve Epsom salt in warm water. Epsom salt is easy to find and can easily be bought in health and grocery stores. Recommendations include dissolving 1 to 2 cups of Epsom salt in a gallon of warm water to create a water-soak bath. It is important not to put too much to avoid irritation and drying of the skin. Let the Epsom salt dissolve in the water, which can take about a few minutes. If you have a bathtub, you can prepare it to submerge and soak in it. However, this can be done as you shower as well. When you have a bladder infection or a urinary tract infection, you can do a water soak for 15-20 minutes to help relieve symptoms. Rinse after every water soak. This can be done daily or on an average of 2-3 times per week. Doing this soak gives ample time in providing relief until the antibiotics start doing their work and control further growth and multiplication of bacteria, completely eliminating symptoms such as pain. If you think you have a urinary tract infection, consult your physician for an evaluation. Further, you should seek medical attention if you are experiencing any serious side effects from using Epsom salt baths. There are no studies that show that using an Epsom salt bath for UTIs will prevent or cure a urinary tract infection, so it is still important to go to the doctor for proper management. Talk to your doctor if you are experiencing symptoms of a urinary tract infection.
Is Endometriosis Genetic?
It’s not uncommon for people to feel some discomfort or pain before, during, and after their menstrual cycle. However, if you find this pain extreme or consistent, there may be underlying medical problems worth addressing. It’s important you talk with your doctor about any reproductive health concerns so you can get the treatment you need to feel better and stay healthy. Many people are surprised to learn that their pain is caused by a condition called endometriosis.
What is Endometriosis?
Endometriosis is a condition referring to the abnormal development of the endometrium. The endometrium is the tissue that lines the uterus. This tissue is normally different from tissues in the surrounding organs of the reproductive system.
However, abnormalities sometimes result in tissues similar to the endometrium growing beyond the uterus. Endometriosis manifests itself differently between individuals. Most often, cases involve tissue abnormalities in the ovaries, fallopian tubes, and the pelvic region. In severe cases, tissue may expand beyond this area.
The condition may result in several different symptoms, including:
- Dysmenorrhea — painful periods are common for many people; however, excessive or extreme pain is sometimes the result of a medical condition. Discuss painful periods with your physician.
- Painful intercourse — many different factors cause sex to be painful. Pain during or following intercourse is sometimes a sign of endometriosis.
- Heavy bleeding — very heavy bleeding or intermenstrual bleeding (bleeding between periods) should be discussed with a primary care physician.
- Infertility — although not everyone that experiences endometriosis has problems getting pregnant, infertility is a common symptom. Many individuals who have endometriosis discover their condition when consulting with a fertility doctor due to difficulties conceiving.
Those with endometriosis may also suffer from diarrhea, constipation, nausea, bloating, or loss of energy. Sometimes, these symptoms are only present during the menstrual cycle. The severity of symptoms varies between individuals, and while some may suffer from severe symptoms, others only experience mild troubles. In many cases, endometriosis is ignored or misdiagnosed as a “normal” period.
How Do I Get Diagnosed for Endometriosis?
Early diagnosis of endometriosis is key to getting treatment and managing symptoms. In addition to the physical exam where doctors ask you questions about your condition, diagnosing endometriosis requires several physical evaluations.
In a pelvic exam, a trained medical professional will manually feel your pelvic area. They do this to determine any abnormalities around your pelvic such as cysts or scars. While this can help, many times, an endometriosis examination requires additional diagnostic tests.
Ultrasounds use sound waves to create images of your internal anatomy. This technique is incredibly useful for capturing images of internal organs, including those of the reproductive system. Standard ultrasounds may help detect cysts, but transvaginal ultrasounds are more common for diagnosing endometriosis. It involves using a transducer, a unique camera device used in ultrasounds. Doctors may press it directly against your abdomen or insert it into the vagina.
Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is another popular technique used to capture the body’s internal images. Rather than using high-frequency sound ways, MRI machines use a strong magnetic field and radio waves to capture detailed pictures of internal tissues.
Laparoscopes are like cameras meant to allow surgeons to see inside of the body. Physicians make a small incision and insert the device inside your body to see direct pictures of your internal anatomy without exposing your internal organs.
What Causes Endometriosis?
There are several different reasons why an individual may have endometriosis. While it is difficult to determine the exact cause of a particular case of endometriosis, scientists have found several explanations to explain the condition.
When an individual experiences a period, their menstrual blood that contains endometrial cells expel from the body. With retrograde menstruation, these cells would go back into the pelvic cavity and thicken and grow.
Peritoneal Cell Transformation
Peritoneal cells, which normally line the inner side of your abdomen, undergo a transformation into endometrial-like cells during maturation.
Following a medical procedure resulting in a scar forming around the reproductive area, such as during a cesarean delivery (C-section), endometrial cells attach to the scar and continue to flourish.
Vessels may carry endometrial cells to other areas in the body.
There is also a theory that other people do have endometrial cells growing outside of their uterus occasionally, but their body knows to attack it and prevent growth. Individuals suffering from immune disorders may not have the fighting power to prevent this growth.
Is Endometriosis Genetic?
Researchers found a strong connection between cases of endometriosis and genes. If an individual has a mother, sister, or grandmother who has endometriosis, the chances of her receiving a diagnosis significantly increases. If you believe you or a loved one may be suffering from endometriosis, make an appointment with your physician.