What are the primary causes of urinary tract infection?
A urinary tract infection occurs when microbes enter the urinary tract and cause an infection. The most common reason is bacteria, but fungi may sometimes also cause UTIs. Most UTIs are caused by E. coli bacteria that reside in the gut of the person itself. Due to the female anatomy, women are more susceptible to UTI. Since the urethra of a woman is shorter than a man’s (average male urethra length is 13-15 cm and average female urethra length is 3.5 cm), bacteria gets unobstructed access to the bladder, causing kidney and bladder infections in the long run. The urethral opening in women is also close to sources of bacteria from the vagina and anus. Sexual activity is also responsible for bacteria moving to the urethral opening. There is a long list of bacteria that can cause urinary tract infection. However, not all of them contribute to the condition. Just like the bowel, microorganisms present in the urethra maintain its health and keep it functioning properly. A few kinds of birth control even improve UTI risks in females. Spermicides may also lead to skin irritations that prompt a bacterial invasion. The use of diaphragms also slow down the flow of urination, causing the multiplication of bacteria. Unlubricated or spermicidal condoms also lead to irritation, causing bacteria to grow. Pay attention to the foods you eat, since some of them are prone to causing urinary tract infections.
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