Clear UTIs with Acupuncture & Chinese Medicine

Clear UTIs with Acupuncture & Chinese Medicine

12 February 2016 by Caitlin Armit

Clear UTI with Acupuncture & Chinese Medicine

Urinary tract infections, or UTIs, are painful annoyances which tend to affect women more than men. The most likely reasons for this is simply that the female urethra is shorter than males and therefore bacteria can reach the bladder faster and because the female urethra opening is in close proximity to the vagina and anus where other bacteria is present. The urinary system includes the kidneys, ureters, bladder and urethra and an infection is usually bacterial (Escherichia coli or E. coli). The infection usually starts in the urethra (urethritis) and may move to the bladder (cystitis) or kidneys (pyelonephritis). What else can cause UTIs? Structural abnormalities in the urinary tract, obstructions such as kidney stones, enlarged prostate glands in men, catheters/tubes, nervous system disorders, diabetes and immune disorders.

The most common treatment for a UTI is a simple course of antibiotics however for many people this is not the ideal option – partly because of the growing concerns about antibiotic resistance and partly because there can be different strains of the same bacteria which can mean recurring infections. The symptoms of a UTI are no fun at all – frequent urination, urgent urination, a burning sensation when urinating, blood in the urine (or a cloudy colour to the urine), passing only a small amount of urine, and possibly having a fever.

The symptoms of a UTI indicate the presence of two key pathogens in Chinese Medicine philosophy – damp (frequency, urgency, cloudy urine) and heat (pain, blood, burning sensation, fever). Western Medicine uses antibiotics to kill the pathogen, whereas Chinese Medicine aims to enable the body to eliminate these pathogens on its own by strengthening the organs and systems involved. The number of research trials on acupuncture for UTIs is surprisingly low but hopefully this will change over the next few years with greater access to funding for large scale clinical trials.

What can you do to help yourself?

  • Drink lots of water! At least 2 litres per day
  • Cranberry tablets – I recommend the ‘Cystitis’ formula from Fusion Health products
  • Urinate when you need to – don’t hold it in
  • Avoid sugar (this includes sweetened Cranberry juice!)
  • Eat plenty of cooked vegetables
  • Avoid alcohol, spicy foods, coffee and cigarettes
  • Avoid taking baths and using feminine hygiene sprays
  • Make sure you get 8 or 9 hours of sleep each night – a healthy immune system requires adequate rest
  • Check out our blog on Corn Silk Tea for Urinary Tract Infections

 

Acupuncture Treatment in the Prevention of Uncomplicated Recurrent Lower Urinary Tract Infections in Adult Women

Acupuncture in the prophylaxis of recurrent lower urinary tract infection in adult women.

An Investigation into the Treatment of Interstitial Cystitis with Acupuncture 

 
Categories: Brisbane Acupuncture Blog | Women's Health Brisbane

 
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