Urethritis is an infection and inflammation of the lining of the urethra, the narrow tube that carries urine out of the body. In men, the urethra also carries semen. Urethritis is caused by bacteria and may affect the bladder, prostate, and reproductive organs. It occurs in males and females of all ages. Females, however, are at higher risk.
There may be no symptoms of urethritis, particularly in women. When there are, symptoms include the following:
Your health care provider will examine your genitals, perform laboratory tests on a urine sample, and take a specimen of mucus from inside the urethra and, in women, the vagina.
Depending on the cause of the infection, a physician may prescribe one of the following treatments:
Nutrition, herbs, and homeopathic remedies are useful in fighting infection, relieving pain, and strengthening the urinary system. Always tell your health care provider about the herbs and supplements you are using.
Following these nutritional tips may help reduce symptoms:
You may address nutritional deficiencies with the following supplements:
You may use natural hormone replacement therapy for chronic urethritis. Check with your health care provider.
Herbs are generally a safe way to strengthen and tone the body's systems. As with any therapy, you should work with your health care provider to diagnose your problem before starting treatment. You may use herbs as dried extracts (capsules, powders, teas), glycerites (glycerine extracts), or tinctures (alcohol extracts). Unless otherwise indicated, make teas with 1 tsp. herb per cup of hot water. Steep covered 5 - 10 minutes for leaf or flowers, and 10 - 20 minutes for roots. Drink 2 - 4 cups per day. You may use tinctures alone or in combination as noted.
Some of the most common remedies used for urethritis are listed below. Usually, the dose is 3 - 5 pellets of a 12X to 30C remedy every 1 - 4 hours until your symptoms get better.
Acupuncture may be helpful in enhancing your body's immune function, overall urogenital health, and for the pain of urethritis.
If your urethritis was caused by a sexually transmitted disease, your sexual partners may need to be treated as well. Possible complications for men included cystitis, epididymitis, and prostatitis. Possible complications for women include cystitis, pelvic inflammatory disease, fertility problems, and other gynecological problems.
STDs can cause permanent damage to reproductive organs and infertility in both sexes. They also can cause difficulties during pregnancy, premature delivery, low birth weight, and infections in newborns.
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