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Burning pain of a cystitis infection; Your Sex Doctor: ISSUE OF THE WEEK.

Byline: CATHERINE HOOD

ALMOST all women will experience cystitis but one in five will get recurrent discomfort. Most will experience mild burning passing urine but the symptoms can get so severe it sabotages sex lives and ruins relationships. Who gets it? CYSTITIS means "inflammation of the bladder" and is often, but not always, caused by an infection.

Men can get cystitis but it's much more common in women because they have a short urethra - the tube that carries urine from the bladder. This means bacteria that live on the skin can easily be transported to the bladder where they multiply and cause infection.

It is most common in women with active sex lives, because the thrusting action can cause inflammation around the urethra. Burning pain THE inflammation causes an ache in the pubic area or lower back and burning pain passing urine. You need to go to the loo frequently and pass small amounts of urine that's dark and could be blood-stained. You may even feel feverish and hot.

Easing the pain MAKE sure you drink six to eight glasses of fluid a day, take over-the-counter painkillers and avoid sex until you're better.

Mild cystitis will settle in a few days. For more severe pains try some sachets of potassium citrate from the chemist. If you're crippled with pain, feeling feverish or there's blood in your urine, see your doctor as you may need antibiotics. Other causes NOT all burning symptoms are due to cystitis. Check for STIs as infections such as chlamydia can cause cystitis-like symptoms.

Chemicals irritating the skin can also have similar effects. Use non-scented or flavoured lubricant for sex and avoid washing the genitals with soap - use moisturising washes like aqueous cream instead. Prevention YOU can cut down recurrences by drinking plenty of water, passing urine before and after sex, washing the genital area before making love. You may also find certain sex positions more comfortable and less likely to irritate the urethra.
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Sunday Mirror (London, England)
Date:May 9, 2010
Words:327
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