Urinary tract infections (UTIs) can be seen in any age group. However, UTIs can occur in women at a higher rate than in men. Women face this more than once in their lifetime. Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are a prevalent type of outpatient infection, especially among adult women, with a lifetime incidence of approximately 50-60%. This means that more than half of all mature women will experience at least one UTI during their lifetime.

UTIs occur when bacteria enter any part of the urinary tract, including the urethra. UTIs may lead to severe kidney and bladder problems if not treated immediately. It can be classified into two types: uncomplicated UTIs and complicated UTIs.

UTIs can be treated through the Most common medication Known as antibiotics. An Antibiotic is a medication that kills bacteria and makes it hard for bacteria to grow and increase. Antibiotics come in tablets, capsules, oral suspension, etc. There are many antibiotics available for the treatment of UTIs.

What Are The Symptoms Of UTI?

Urinary tract infection (UTI) is a common bacterial infection that can affect any part of the urinary tract, including the bladder, urethra, ureters, and kidneys. The symptoms of a UTI can vary depending on the location of the infection and the severity of the condition. Here are some common and severe symptoms of UTI:

Common Symptoms of UTI

  • Pain or burning during urination
  • Repeated or urgent urination
  • A tiny amount of urine
  • Blood in urine or cola-colored urine
  • Smelly urine
  • Cloudy urine
  • Lower back pain
  • Pain in the lower belly, especially seen in women

Severe Symptoms of UTI

If UTIs are not treated immediately, they may lead to severe infections or symptoms mentioned below:

  • Pyelonephritis (Kidney Infection): symptoms may be fever, chills, nausea or vomiting, and back pain.
  • Cystitis (Bladder Infection): symptoms may be pelvic pressure, lower abdomen, frequent urination, or blood in the urine.
  • Urethritis (Urethra Infection): symptoms can be intense burning during urination and discharge.

Older people can also be affected by bacteria. They may experience weakness, lethargy, and mental health issues. A urinary infection during pregnancy is complicated. You should immediately consult your doctor for check-ups.

How Do Antibiotics Treat UTIs?

All antibiotic classes have distinct capabilities. Their ability to work on certain infections varies. It depends on the causative agent (bacterial species) that they will target. Antibiotics treat UTIs by killing the bacteria causing infection. This stops bacterial growth in the urinary tract. Antibiotics can only treat bacterial infections. They do not work on viral or fungal infections.

You need to consult your doctor or healthcare provider to know which antibiotic will work well on your infection. Healthcare professionals consider specific criteria before selecting antibiotics for your condition. They test our urine samples to identify the bacteria causing infection and some other factors given below:

  • Antibiotic effectivity on the specific bacteria species
  • the severity of the infection
  • The age group of the patient
  • Possibility of antibiotic resistance

What are the Best Antibiotics For Treating UTIs?

Antibiotics deal with bacterial infections, so you must know the best antibiotics to help you. We have selected the top 9 antibiotics for UTIs, according to drugs.com user reviews and ratings. User reviews play a vital role in creating a trust factor in medicine, but every drug has the best results.

MedicineStrengthNo. Of ReviewsUser Rating
Nitrofurantoin100 mg, 50mg1267 reviews4.2
Sulfamethoxazole/trimethoprim400mg, 80mg, 40mg, 8mg748 reviews4.3
Ciprofloxacin250, 500mg, 1000mg395 reviews4.9
Cephalexin250mg, 500mg, 25mg, 50mg109 reviews6.4
Ceftriaxone1g, 2g, 50mg, 75mg53 reviews9.1
Amoxicillin500mg, 250mg, 275mg, 500mg41 reviews6.8
Doxycycline100mg, 200mg40 reviews6.7
Levofloxacin250mg, 750mg, 250mg73 Reviews5
Fosfomycinsachet (powder or Liquid)67 reviews5.0

You can get advice on any medicine from the doctor that will benefit your benefit. Every drug acts differently according to the body type, so look at your kind of medicine. Let’s know detailed information on the Uti mentioned above medications.

1. Nitrofurantoin (Macrobid, Macrodantin, Furandantin)

Nitrofurantoin is the generic name. It belongs to the Nitrofuran family of antibiotics. The common brand names are Macrobid, Macrodantin, and Furandantin. Nitrofurantoin is a synthetic antibiotic formed with furan and nitro groups and a side-changing hydantoin.

It is active against gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria. It works by killing the bacteria and preventing their further growth. Nitrofurantoin is the first-line treatment for UTIs. It kills the E. coli pathogens that lead to infections in the urinary tract.

Nitrofurantoin should start working within 3 to 4 days. However, it may take a week or a bit longer to kill all the offending bacteria, clear your symptoms, and treat uti. Hence, make sure you complete the entire course of your antibiotic regimen. Remember that your doctor should prescribe all antibiotics. You cannot simply buy them over the counter. You can also read Nitrofurantoin Treatment For Urinary Tract Infections.

2. Trimethoprim/Sulfamethoxazole (Bactrim, Septra)

Bactrim and Septra are some brand-name drugs belonging to the sulfonamides antibiotic family. The generic names are Trimethoprim and Sulfamethoxazole. It is a combination of antibiotics used to treat urinary infections. It works by eliminating the bacterial species that cause the infections.

Trimethoprim works as a bacteriostatic antibiotic (limits the growth of bacteria) in combination with Sulfamethoxazole, which has bactericidal (bacteria-killing) activity to eliminate infections.
Apart from UTIs, it also treats middle ear infections in children, travelers’ diarrhea in adults, chronic bronchitis, and certain types of pneumonia.

3. Ciprofloxacin (Cipro)

Cipro is a common brand name for Ciprofloxacin. It belongs to the Fluoroquinolones family of antibiotics. Ciprofloxacin treats UTIs and bacterial infections like respiratory, bone, and joint infections, typhoid fever, etc.

The Fluoroquinolones class includes Ciprofloxacin and Levofloxacin. They target two bacterial enzymes, DNA gyrase and topoisomerase, responsible for DNA replication’s coiling and sealing processes. Therefore, these drugs affect bacteria’s growth, causing UTIs and eventually killing them.

4. Cephalexin (Keflex)

Cephalexin is the generic name of the antibiotic. Keflex is the most common brand name for Cephalexin. It belongs to the family of antibiotics called Cephalosporins. This drug is used to treat infections of the kidney and bladder. Keflex can treat UTIs and a wide range of bacterial infections.

Cephalosporins are more resistant to the action of beta-lactamase (enzymes), a bacterial defense against antibiotics. Cephalexin inhibits bacterial cell wall production, ultimately leading to its breakdown.

related post: how effective is Cephalexin for uti

5. Ceftriaxone (Rocephin)

Ceftriaxone is the generic name, and Rocephin is the brand name. It belongs to the family of antibiotics called Cephalosporin, similar to Cephalexin. Rocephin is an antibiotic that a healthcare provider administers as an injection into your muscle.

The doctor recommends Ceftriaxone for UTI treatment, and it also treats bacterial intra-abdominal and ear infections. Ceftriaxone works by inhibiting bacterial cell wall formation. It destroys the bonds that hold the bacterial cell wall together. It weakens the bacteria, causing the infection and leading the immune cells to kill them quickly.

6. Amoxicillin/Clavulanate (Augmentin)

Amoxicillin and Clavulanic Acid, commonly known as Amoxiclav, belong to the Penicillin family of antibiotics. The common brand name for the combination is Augmentin. Amoxicillin is effective for urinary infections.

It is a combination of antibiotics that works by inhibiting the beta-lactamase (enzyme) of bacteria and helps block enzymes that often contribute to antibiotic resistance.

It is a combination of antibiotics that works by inhibiting the beta-lactamase (enzyme) of bacteria and helps block enzymes that often contribute to antibiotic resistance.

The 2 active ingredients work together to kill bacteria and prevent further growth. It also works on the inner ear and dental infections. It only exhibits mild side effects.

7. Doxycycline (Vibramycin-D, Efracea, Periostat)

Doxycycline is an antibiotic medication that is commonly prescribed to treat a variety of bacterial infections. It works by targeting and eliminating bacteria in the body belonging to the tetracycline class. However, Doxycycline for urinary tract infections (UTIs) is not usually the first-line treatment of uncomplicated caused by bacteria that infect the urinary tract, including the bladder, urethra, ureters, and kidneys. Doxycycline is typically used more frequently to treat other infections, such as respiratory tract infections and skin and soft tissue infections. It is essential to consult with a healthcare professional to determine the appropriate treatment for your UTI, as the choice of antibiotic may depend on several factors, such as the type of bacteria causing the infection, its severity, and your medical history.

In cases where a UTI is caused by a specific type of bacteria known to be susceptible to Doxycycline, it may be used as a second-line treatment option if the first-line antibiotics are ineffective or cannot be used due to an allergy or other medical condition. However, it is essential to note that Doxycycline may not be effective against all types of bacteria that can cause UTIs.

8. Levofloxacin (Levaquin)

Levofloxacin is highly effective in treating uncomplicated UTIs. Levaquin is the common brand name. Levofloxacin is included in the family of antibiotics called Fluoroquinolones.

Levaquin works on TUIs by stopping the growth of bacteria that cause the infection. It prevents the reproduction and repair of their DNA. It is a drug that comes in oral tablets or solutions. It also comes in an eye drop form.

9. Fosfomycin (Monurol)

Fosfomycin is an antibiotic used to treat uncomplicated urinary tract infections and cystitis (bladder infection). It is also sometimes used for prostate infections in men. It belongs to the Epoxide family of antibiotics. A common brand name is Monurol.

Fosfomycin works on UTIs by inhibiting gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria cell wall synthesis. This inhibits the formation and growth of bacteria, causing the infection.
This medication is given as a single dose and is available in powder form that you must mix with water before intake.

Can UTI Antibiotics Make Bacteria Immune?

Bacteria can become immune or resistant to antibiotics while treating UTIs. It starts when they adapt to the specific properties of the antibiotic used. Hence, it becomes harder for the antibiotics to kill the bacteria. This is officially termed antibiotic resistance.

Antibiotic resistance usually occurs when antibiotics are used longer and more often than needed. It allows the bacteria to adapt to the antibiotic, weakening its effectiveness.

Frequent illness in elderly patients, underlying medical conditions, and many other factors can lead to antibiotic resistance. Kidney problems or even severe health conditions can arise as complications of antibiotic resistance.

Common Side Effects Of Antibiotics While Treating UTIs?

You might experience some of the side effects mentioned below when taking antibiotics:

  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Stomach cramps
  • Fever
  • Headache or light-headedness
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Dizziness

How Long Should I Take Antibiotics to Treat A UTI?

Usually, antibiotics work quickly when taken for infections. You may feel better within a few hours. However, it can take 3 to 4 days to treat uncomplicated UTIs. The duration of the treatment for

UTIs generally depend on the following factors:

  • The bacteria causing infection
  • The type of drug consumed
  • Other comorbid medical conditions

The course of treatment may extend from 15 days to 1 month, especially for complicated UTIs. Nevertheless, it should only take a few days to notice improvement. Keep in mind to maintain proper hydration and good nutrition while consuming antibiotics.

Why Should I Take The Full Course?

You must complete the entire course of antibiotics to resolve UTIs. Do not stop taking antibiotics even if you start feeling better within a few days. You still need to consume the rest of the medications until the end of the regimen.

Not completing the course may result in high bacterial regrowth, severe side effects, and other complications. Therefore, complete the course prescribed by your doctor to resolve the infection completely.

Can UTI Symptoms Linger After I Take Antibiotics?

Usually, antibiotics clear the infection and reduce symptoms once the course is done. However, there are some chances that the infection remains despite taking antibiotics. This may be because of the following reasons:

  • Antibiotic resistance
  • UTI from another type of bacteria
  • The wrong kind of antibiotic
  • Underlying condition or comorbidity
  • Complicated cystitis and kidney diseases
  • Sexually transmitted infection

Here are some quick solutions to increase the effectiveness of antibiotics to overcome UTIs:

  • Improve or change your hygiene habits
  • Drink more water and eat plenty of fruits and vegetables
  • Consider taking probiotics or dietary supplements

Alternative Ways Of Treating UTIs Along With Antibiotics?

Drink Lots Of Water/Stay Hydrated
Drinking plenty of water or extra fluids when consuming antibiotics is highly recommended since it helps flush out the bacteria that cause infection.

Use Probiotics

Probiotics keep your gastrointestinal and urinary tract healthy with good bacteria and free from pathogenic bacteria. It is usually found in dairy products like yogurt, cheeses, kefir, etc.
People can also take probiotic supplements. These are excellent over-the-counter treatment options for UTIs. It helps in digestion and increases bacterial immunity in your body to prevent infections.

Drink Cranberry Juice

Cranberry juice is a natural remedy for treating UTIs. For a change, you can have cranberry juice instead of water for fluid intake. Neither is more effective, but it helps treat UTIs since it contains antioxidants with antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties.

Get Enough Vitamin C

Vitamin C works as an antioxidant by protecting your cells against free radicals. It helps improve your body’s immune system. It can also kill other bacteria by forming nitrogen oxide in the urine. Many people have been using Vitamin C to treat and prevent UTIs.

Good Bathroom Hygiene

Urinate as soon as the need arises. Frequent urination can help flush out bacteria from the bladder and urethra. Always remember that after urination, wipe from front to back. This prevents bacteria (usually E. coli) from moving from the anus to the genitals.

Practice Good Sexual Hygiene

Maintain good sexual hygiene to avoid the risk of UTIs. Sexual intercourse can introduce bacteria to the urinary tract. It can affect both males and females.

Here are some tips you can follow to maintain good sexual hygiene:

  • Urinate and wash your genitals before and after sex
  • Use condoms and change them each time

Final Words From AzDrug

UTIs are common infections of the body. Bacteria usually cause them. UTIs can be treated using antibiotic medications. These are drugs that kill the offending bacteria and stop their further growth. These medications may take a while, but they reduce pain and clear symptoms. You should complete your entire course of medication to see its full effects. Aside from that, take proper precautions when consuming it.

If your condition does not improve after a few days of taking antibiotics or if there are adverse side effects, you must contact your doctor immediately. Remember that antibiotics are prescribed medication. You cannot simply buy them on your own without a prescription. Some natural remedies are also available to help treat and prevent UTIs.

Why do women get UTIs more often than men?

UTIs are more common in women than men because women have shorter urethras than men. Thus, pathogenic bacteria have a shorter distance to travel to reach the urinary bladder.

How do you treat UTIs caused by ESBL-producing bacteria?

Carbapenem antibiotics are the first-line treatment for ESBL-UTI.

How do I determine if my child has a UTI?

Your child may have a UTI if they experience symptoms like pain, burning, or a stinging smell when urinating. Consult your doctor immediately when these symptoms occur.

What is the treatment of UTI in a child?

Similar to adults, children must take antibiotics to treat their UTIs. You can consult your doctor and take the prescribed medication for the bacterial infection.

Disclaimer: Please see your healthcare practitioner for any medical queries or concerns. Peer-reviewed research and information from medical societies and government agencies are used to support the articles in Health Guide. They are not, however, a replacement for expert medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.

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