When the cystitis symptoms hit, you might be in the office, in the middle of a presentation. Or at a great party after few glasses of bubbly.

Many cases of cystitis flare up during a romantic weekend, or a faraway trip spoiling a memorable moment for ever. 

It is only natural trying to do anything to get rid of the burning sensation, the bladder spasm and the uncontrolled urge to urinate. And this includes reaching for a painkiller. 

Whether paracetamol, aspirin or ibuprofen, painkillers are one of the miracles of modern medicine. And one the biggest problems too.

Pain is defined as a highly unpleasant physical sensation caused by illness or injury. It is a hugely important warning sign in our evolutionary development.

Pain is one of the four classic signs of inflammation together with Heat, Redness and Swelling.

What exactly causes the pain when you have a lower urinary tract infection (bladder infection)?

Urinary tract infection occurs when bacteria enter the bladder and start to multiply increasingly fast, as the result, your body responds with inflammation, burning bladder pain, painful frequent urination , lower abdominal pain and cloudy urine. While inflammation is an important defence mechanism signalling the existence of a problem, left untreated. it can become chronic with numerous long term side effects.

Remember, the earlier you act in a case of a urinary tract infection, the better! 

Relying just on pain killers and/or tablets that change the urine pH from acidic to alkaline offer just symptomatic temporary relief.

Even if your symptoms go away completely you should still take a test to confirm full recovery.

And if you start feeling unwell (flank pain, fever, vomiting, nausea) then drop everything, and go straight to the ER.

It is hugely important to achieve pain relief by treating the etiology- the cause of the pain – in this case the bladder infection, not just the pain itself. 

Sadly, there are too many cases where urinary tract infections are treated as a headache. And only addressed with pain relief. 

Recently the Daily Mail highlighted the case of a 26 year old young science teacher with a serious Urinary Tract Infection that was trying to get pain relief. Sadly, she overdosed on painkillers and couldn’t get help on time. 

Left untreated, UTIs can develop, damage the kidneys and even lead to sepsis.

“In 20%–30% of sepsis patients, the infection originates from……urinary tract infections (UTIs)”