An inflammation of the bladder, cystitis typically occurs in women, although it can occur less frequently in men and children. It is caused by the infection of the urinary tract by normally harmless bacteria that occur in the rectum. The condition is found more commonly in women, due to their shorter urethra and thus shorter distance between the rectum (which contains the bacteria) and the urinary tract. The condition can also occur after very active sexual intercourse resulting in the bruising of the vaginal and urethral tissue.
The symptoms include a frequent need to pass urine with pain and stinging on urination. The urine appears cloudy with an unpleasant odor and may contain blood. Fever, abdominal and lower back pain may also be present. Once detected, the sufferer should drink plenty of water to help 'flush' out the bacteria. As bacteria thrive in acid conditions a teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda diluted into the water will help reduce the acidity.
If the condition persists a course of antibiotics may be prescribed to resolve the condition and prevent the spread of infection to the kidneys.
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