Learn to deal with urine infections in winter



    Winter can increase the risk of catching infections, and urinary tract infections are one of them. Here’s how to avoid urinary infections in winter!

    During winter, we might forget to take care of ourselves, and one thing we might not think about is keeping our urinary system healthy. When it gets cold, our bodies become more vulnerable to infections but if we pay attention and make some easy changes, we can get through winter while keeping our urinary system in good shape. If you’re more likely to get urinary infections in winter, you should be extra careful and you should know how you can avoid urinary infections in winter.

    Health Shots got in touch with Dr Prakash Chandra Shetty, a Urologist, in Powai, Mumbai, to understand how to deal with urine infections in winter.

    What are urinary tract infections?

    As the name suggests, a urinary tract infection happens when infection takes place in any part of the urinary system. All the parts that make up the urinary system include the kidneys, urethra, bladder, and uterus. Most infections take birth in the lower urinary tract- the bladder and the urethra.

    Women are more prone to developing a UTI in comparison to men. If an infection develops in the bladder, it can be extremely painful and irritating. In grave cases, a UTI can spread to the kidneys, causing serious health issues.

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    How to deal with urine infections in winter
    UTIs are common in cold winter months, but they can be avoided with these tips Image courtesy: Freepik

    How to avoid urinary infections in winter?

    Here are some easy-to-follow ways to avoid urinary infections in winter:

    1. Stay hydrated

    “In colder weather, the temptation to reduce water intake is common. However, maintaining proper hydration is crucial for flushing bacteria out of your urinary system. Aim for at least eight glasses of water a day, and consider warm herbal teas to stay cosy,” Dr Prakash Chandra Shetty tells Health Shots.

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    2. Avoid holding it in

    When you feel the urge to urinate, respond promptly. Holding urine allows bacteria to multiply in the bladder, increasing the risk of urinary tract infections (UTIs). Make it a habit to listen to your body and head to the bathroom when needed.

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    3. Choose comfortable underwear

    Breathable cotton underwear is an excellent choice for maintaining a dry and healthy genital area. Moist environments create an ideal breeding ground for bacteria, so opting for breathable fabrics helps prevent infection.

    4. Maintain personal hygiene

    “Personal hygiene is extremely vital, especially during the winter. Regular showers help keep your body clean, and proper wiping after using the toilet prevents the spread of bacteria,” says the expert.

    Also Read: Toilet seats can give you infections: Know what you can catch in a restroom

    5. Dress warmly

    “The pelvic region is particularly vulnerable to the cold. Layering up and wearing warm clothing not only keeps you comfortable but also helps maintain a stable body temperature,” explains the expert. This, in turn, supports your immune system and helps you ward off potential infections.

    how to deal with urine infections in winter
    Staying hydrated also helps with keeping UTIs at bay. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

    6. Track your vitamin D levels

    Winter means spending more time indoors, leading to less exposure to sunlight. This, in turn, causes Vitamin D deficiency. Vitamin D plays a pivotal role in supporting our immune system and reducing the risk of infections.

    “Consider incorporating foods rich in vitamin D like fatty fish, fortified dairy products, or a Vitamin D supplement, as recommended by your healthcare provider. Adequate Vitamin D levels contribute to overall well-being, including urinary health,” reckons the expert.

    Also read: UTI can also affect children: Know the symptoms and how to avoid urinary tract infections

    7. Warm clothing layers

    Layering up during colder days not only keeps you warm but also helps your body maintain a stable temperature. Sudden exposure to cold can stress your immune system, making you more susceptible to infections. By dressing warmly, you provide additional support to your body’s natural defences.

    8. Eat a balanced diet

    A well-balanced diet maintains your overall health and immunity. “Include a variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins in your meals. These nutrient-rich foods provide adequate vitamins and minerals necessary to support your immune system in its fight against infections,” adds the expert.

    As winter comes, these tips can help keep your urinary health strong. Drink enough water, wear warm clothes, stay clean, and choose your food wisely. This way, you can enjoy the season without risking your health.

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