Conscious relating with self, land, and others.

Home Remedies for Chronic UTI’s

Treating UTI’s at home can be a great supplement to what you are already doing. Unfortunately so many women feel so anxious by the whole process, in part because there’s so little information available about how to support this important system.

Some people run to get antibiotics at the first signs. But my experience has been that frequent antibiotic treatment often makes things worse, including my UTI’s.

According to chinese medicine, chronic urinary tract irritations are a sign of low vitality and overall “kidney”deficiencies. Since kidney energy is the source of our wellbeing, sexual vitality, and longevity, framed in this way, it looks more like a significant health issue than an acute inflammation (which is how allopathic medicine views them.)

I got serious “honeymoon cystitis” on my honeymoon actually. Frequent sex was leaving me with this constant feeling of burning and irritation in my urethra and cloudy urine. And this went on for months and years.  I wanted to get off the pharmaceutical ferris wheel so I experimented with many home remedies and found some significant solutions.

I’ve written this protocol down for friends so many times, thought it would be helpful for a larger audience. Little warning – this is not medical advice. Just trying to empower women with a little supplemental, at-home, preventative knowledge. Use your common sense and innate body knowledge. And if it gets severe, see a doctor.

Early detection….CRUCIAL

The earlier you can detect an imbalance in the urethra, the better. My early warning signs are a tingling up the inside of my leg and a slight pain sensation in the inner heal, just under the ankle bone. These spots correspond with the meridians associated with the bladder. As soon as I feel these sensations I go into action. UTI’s are soooo much easier to kick out early on. Other early warning signs including an unpleasant sensation in the urethra, burning feeling when you pee, or cloudy urine. Get good at noticing very subtle symptoms. Do not ignore then. If you jump right on these steps, you could avoid more serious steps later.

So here’s my Protocol

  1. Immediately wash the genital area. Leftover semen, bacteria growth, and soap residue somehow makes for more infection reaction. I always use a gentle soap, never commercial soaps with perfumes. Always fragrence free and easy on the body. And make sure to wash away all the soap.
  2. Immediately drink lots of water. It hurts to pee but seriously, the more water you drink the less it will hurt. Counterintuitive but true. Flushing water through the body is key.
  3. Immediately clean up the diet of sugar and alcohol and other nasties (fast food, transfats, etc.. ). Eat clean. It makes a huge difference.
  4. Drink veggie juice, the fresh kind, from a health food store (or make it at home with your own juicer). I get organic green vegetable juice (celery, parsley, cucumber, or some similar combination with very little sweet in it). A little pineapple is ok because it has lots of enzymes and will make the juicy tasty.) If you have access to an organic juice bar, drink as many of these as possible over the next few days. I’ve had these juices kick out a UTI and done little to nothing else.
  5. Dry clay on the urethra – yes directly on the freshly cleaned urethra (see below for the crazy but true details.)
  6. Urinary Tract Supplements. I’m not a big pill popper. I try to encourage my body to do it’s best without a bunch of supplement support. But when I feel that UTI is hanging on a bit too long or progressing in symptoms (cloudy pee, pain, burning urine, need to pee and not much comes out) I do all the above steps more and I do take supplements.
    1. Uva Ursi combination (I use this one even though it’s not organic.) Important herbs are: Uva Ursi and Marshmallow. Find a combination you like.
    2. D-Mannose (a sugar made from birch, like xylitol trees that’s supposed to take the bacteria with it but it doesn’t absorb or digest in the body). I researched a bunch of them and this one seems the purest.
  7. Homeopathy – There are a couple on the market that some folks swear by. The general ones are one-size fits all sort of thing. But if you want to get one that fits your specific situation, see a homeopath.
  8. Natural Anti-biotics. Ok so here’s the rap. Our bodies are made of bacteria. If we didn’t have them, we wouldn’t be alive. They are often in perfect balance all of the other micro-organisms in the body (including fungi and viruses). When we start messing with this balance by killing them (anti-biotic is a bacteria killer) we sometimes make problems worse because things get out of balance. That being said, sometimes I feel the need to lower the bacteria count in the urinary tract just to get it under control so the other methods have a chance. I will use these:
    1. Oregano oil
    2. Grapefruit seed extract
    3. Echinacea
  9. Sleep. Loss of sleep and stress can exacerbate UTI’s for me. Sleep deep and long – it helps.
  10. Acupuncture. There are some great cheap clinics. I go for an acute UTI and I also go long-term to treat the underlying cause of why my system is too weak to keep them at bay.
  11. I try to avoid taking prescription anti-biotics. It seems to me that it makes things worse over time by throwing off my bacteria balance (in my stomach and urinary tract) and seems to tell my body that it can’t to it myself. I fear that I’ll have to work harder next time to help my body overcome. I would try all the above steps many times before reaching for this. Although use your own judgement and see below for the disclaimer and seek medical advice if symptoms become worse.


Clay….The Miracle Solution

This is the best solution I’ve experienced. And as far as I know, I invented it (although maybe some other smart people also discovered it and I just never stumbled across their blog.)

Here’s the logic: UTI’s come from irritation and bacteria externally on the urethra, right? Well why not protect and heal the urethra externally, right? I’ve tried all kinds of things on the urethra but most of them either sting, irritate, or don’t work. What i discovered is that if I put a bit of clay powder (I like this one but I’m sure any good-quality, pure, dry clay will do), it absorbs moisture, protects the urethra from more bacteria (because it has anti-bacterial properties) and sort of “seals” and sooths the area with its magical properties.  Voilà – all sorts of solutions in one simple (and cheap) package.

I’ve looked all over the internet and no one talks about treating UTI’s with direct application. Mostly because the tissue is sooo darn sensitive. But I love putting this protective and soothing barrier.

There are two ways to apply the clay. 1. Lay back on the bed, spread open the labia and drop ½ teaspoon right on the urethra. Close the legs and the moisture and closure keeps it in there. 2. Put a little mound of clay on the tip of the finger, spread the labia with the other hand, and try to hit a bulls eye on the urethra. You’ve got to know where the urethra is though. It’s right above the vaginal opening and below the clit. Feel around with some clay on your finger and you’ll find it. It’s the most sensitive thing down there. And if it’s infected, you’ll doubly know. Or look at some pictures or in a hand mirror.

After Sex Protocols

Take some extra precautions after sex as all that rockin and rollin gets things irritated, especially if you’re prone to infections.

  • Drink large glass of water before and after sex
  • Ask your partner to clean his/her hands before touching you down there.
  • Try not to get the stuff from the anus onto the urinary area. If you’re having anal play or anal sex, wash up if possible and/or wash thoroughly afterwards.
  • Use a sex lube that is non-irritating, non-chemical, non-perfumey. My favorite is Coconut Oil. It smells great, feels great, and is soothing to the urethra. It’s also antibiotic. But it’s an oil so the downsides: greasy and not to be used with latex condoms (it will make them thin and potentially break).
  • Saliva is the worst. The ecoli in the mouth will create UTI’s faster than anything else. But who wants to forgo the pleasures the mouth brings. Not I. But I will refrain (and find other fun things to do) during an active UTI. It’s just not worth it.
  • Wash the area thoroughly after sex and then again a few hours later and regularly if you’re dealing with semen (can tend to leak out over time and can irritate).
  • Put clay on the uretha after washing and apply throughout the day or days that you feel symptoms.
  • Do any of the above protocols, especially if you are prone to UTI’s after sex….clean up your diet, drink green juice, sleep more, or preventatively take uva ursi, natural antibiotic, and/or some d-mannose (if you’re trying to get pregnant, d-mannose might prevent that for a 4-hour window around when you take it. Do some more research first.)

When to See a Doctor/Clinic

Anytime you want.

If the pain is severe.

If the pain moves up your back.

If there is blood in the urine.

If you feel anxious or uncertain.

If you want more understanding and empowerment you can always explore holistic options when you’re not in an acute or painful situation.

Lee Warren

Lee Warren

Lee Warren is reclaiming wisdom through conscious relating with self, land, and others. She has 25 years of experience envisioning, designing, and living innovative solutions to mutually empowered relationships, land-based food systems, residential community, non-violent communication, and sustainability education. She is the principle and founder of Reclaiming Wisdom, a co-founder of SOIL, School of Integrated Living, and a proponent of regenerative systems, consent culture, and authentic living. Lee is a writer, teacher, and activist, with an passion for embodiment practices, rural wisdom, sustainable economics, conscious dying, and community of all kinds.

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