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Cystitis is due to an inflammation of the bladder sometimes caused by infection. It produces symptoms of wanting to pass water frequently, unable to hold your water, pain over the lower abdomen and/or a sensation of ‘burning’ at the tip where one passes water.

Self Help

Drinking plenty of fluids (5-6 pints daily) helps prevent cystitis in the first place. It often settles on its own but you can try:

  • Putting a hot water bottle against your abdomen to ease the pain.
  • Exercise is one of life’s great little movers.
  • Drinking drinks such as cranberry juice or lemon barley water.
  • A mixture of potassium citrate available from your pharmacist.
  • Take aspirin or paracetamol for the pain.

*Women should always wipe their bottom from front to back to avoid contamination (passing bacteria from the anus to the urethra through which urine passes).

See Your Doctor If

  • You continue to feel unwell after 2-3 days.
  • There is any blood in your urine.
  • You are pregnant.
  • You develop backache.

*Take a mid-stream urine sample from your first visit to the toilet in the morning, in a clean, well-rinsed bottle to the surgery for analysis. The doctor may consider prescribing you antibiotics even before the urine result returns.