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We have tried every prescription doctors recommended like Methanamine Hipp and Myrbetriq, any supplement I could research , like D-mannose and cranberry tablets. Has anyone out there had any luck keeping these under control? I was thinking I would try a bidet next to see if that would help. It seems like every UTI makes here dementia worse. I wonder if getting delirium from UTIs over and over can cause dementia.

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Uti’s can make you nuts that’s for sure. Change her diet. I get uti’s from drinking crystal light. Something in it cause a ph change. Acidity foods like eggplant always help me get rid of it. I know in nursing homes they use a lot of sugar substitutes. Check out to see if she is eating sugar subs and artificially colored food - like orange soda or cheese puffs.
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Reply to Erosus
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Please don't avoid giving an antibiotic, but make sure it is one that matches the bacteria causing the UTI, meaning you need to get her tested. Make sure she is sparkling clean before any test.

A few responses talk about scent. Don't put scent anywhere near the vagina anus or urinary openings. Let things air out.

But most importantly, there is a direct route from the anus and related areas to the female urinary tract and vagina and that needs to be stopped. After every bowel movement she needs to be cleaned thoroughly with warm water rinses and a gentle towel.

Also, anything with fake sugar can irritate and cause symptoms of a UTI in younger people too. People go for years with urgency, then they can't urinate when they get there, or they have leaks and a lot of it is fake sugar. They'll tell you one is better than the other but all of them have the same effect. Caffeine, caramel color in sodas, soda waters, sometimes even spicy things can irritate the urethra and make it feel like you need to go frequently and urgently. Try removing those things out of the diet if the bacteria culture comes up negative.

I didn't know about the dementia symptoms until after I started taking care of my mom and doing research but I can say for sure that people don't suddenly become senile over a short period of time. That can be from the UTI for sure, unless it's super sudden, which is more likely some sort of stroke.

For every woman reading this, the US doesn't use bidets as a matter of course and I think this is a major problem. Anyone who does laundry in the US knows there are often stains left behind and this means that there is fecal matter remaining on your skin. Feces are stickier than most people think about. If a bird pooped and it landed on your arm would you use a paper towel to wipe it off and that's it? No, you'd need water and that's the same for human feces as well. Sweat, which is natural, will carry that feces to your other openings. It travels. I won't even mention thong underwear because they need to be considered decorative only, and used very briefly, if ever.
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MargaretMcKen May 17, 2021
It's great to read a post from someone who really understands that UTIs are about fecal contamination getting into the bladder, not out-of-the blue and not cured by drinking cranberry juice!
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I used to also have constant UTI s constantly. Finally a Urologist told me about D-Mannose which is available on Amazon and it is a bladder cleanse. Sometimes I could even kill the infection with plenty of D-Mannose. It is life changing so I urge you to get plenty of it now. I take it daily to keep my bladder in tip top shape. I take 3 a day and no longer have UTI infections. Check it out on Amazon.
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I have a similar problem and found out accidentally that Vistaril clears up the problem, which is apparently related to an allergic response.
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Estrogen loss could be a contributing factor. Estrogen helps the urinary tract resist infection. Might ask her doctor about low-dose estrogen as part of her arsenal to prevent UTIs if she's a good candidate.
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UTIs can cause dementia type symptoms especially if septicemia is involved. Circulating bacteria can damage internal organs & blood vessels. This decreases the ability of oxygen rich blood to circulate through out the body, including the brain. Chronic inflammatory response from recurrent UTIs is damaging. Senior’s immune response is decreased as well. The immune system just isn’t what it used to be. Colonization of bacteria in the urinary tract can result in recurrent UTIs. Don’t forget about hygiene. I see that has been addressed in previous replies.
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If she wears pads or diapers of any kind make sure they get changed at LEAST every day, and for certain any time they are wet or soiled. Maybe that will help with the UTI, or other infections that ladies sometimes have to deal with.
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Reply to grandmamommy
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She needs to drink water, eat yogurt or take probiotics and make sure that when she uses bathroom she is wiping from front to back and not the reverse. A bidet might help, but i think most older people don't drink enough (which can also cause dehydration). I wish you luck.
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Reply to wolflover451
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Same situation with my mom. Her doctor put her on a daily low-dosage antibiotic. It’s real low dose but seems to work.
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I’ll post this again. UTIs are an infection, and it usually comes in bugs from feces. The bladder can be more or less resistant to the bugs, and various things can influence how resistant it is (eg cranberry juice helps). But it is still an infection. I used to have them regularly, and it stopped when I got really good about washing and changing knickers every time I had a ‘wet fart’ or diarrhoea. (And I’m so glad that none of you know me face to face). Now I do this every time I’m in doubt, and I haven’t had a UTI for years.

Repeated UTIs can affect the kidneys. I was threatened with this, but I don’t know how it affects re-infection.

It may be that your mother is re-infecting herself. The antibiotics fix what is in the bladder, but perhaps she still has bugs around the area. If I had that problem now, and couldn’t wash or shower thoroughly, I would wipe the areas with a disinfectant (and I’d check with the chemist about a disinfectant that would be OK for the skin). Try everything, is my advice!
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My Mother also had chronic UTIs, and now I, at 73 have gotten it every month (even with Cranberry pills, juice, and strong probiotics), and I always drank a lot of water throughout the day. It got so bad that my doc wanted me to see (again) a urologist...said culture was a rare infection. (I happen to take apple cider vinegar tablets at night for weight loss). She checked out my kidneys and bladder...said everything looked okay, it seems to be coming from the opening itself. Odd thing she said was to put coconut oil on vagina opening. I looked it up on computer, and other docs had recommended it too. I had bought tub of it to try cooking with it, but never used it ...now keep it in my bathroom. I put it on a piece of toilet paper and around the opening every 3 days (I also put a light pad and change every other day). About 3 months after, though, felt it was coming back. I ordered from Amazon, Horbaach Cranberry Concentrate 30,000 mg (plus vit. C) 150 capsules. I take one capsule every morning with the rest of my pills. Seems the OTC cranberry pills are NOT STRONG enough. Haven't had the UTI in over a year now. So try the both of them, and I hope it helps.
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I hope some of the advice given by others will help.

My daughter suggested I drink Alkaline water. She pays for it to be delivered to my house in 1/2 gallon bottles. (I think she didn't trust me to buy it, but if she purchased it, she hopes I will feel guilty if I don't drink it :-). So far, that and Cranberry pills have helped me. I have some D-mannose, but haven't tried it.

I do find that since my bladder is tipped, I often don't void all the way. So, drinking a lot of the Alkaline may help keep my urine diluted. I don't mean gallons, just being aware that I need to drink often.

I have to wear some light pads which I change often. Too, my sewing/computer room is next to a bathroom, when I get up, I just go to the bathroom before doing anything else.

I hope you find something for her.
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MargaretMcKen May 10, 2021
Yes, the preventers (eg cranberry) are usually alkaline. The first test at the doctor is to put a litmus-type drop into your urine sample. If it turns red, the urine is acidic and you have a Urinary Tract Infection. The lab test shows what type, so what type of antibiotic you need.
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How does she clean herself after toileting?

Is she wiping the back (anus area) separately?....
or is she wiping from back to front?
There's a possibility she could be infecting herself ...getting the feces on her urinary area.

Yes, frequent URIs can cause dementia like symptoms.
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Reply to Abigail789
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If you haven't had it done then have a urine sample taken and have a Culture Done to find out what type of bacteria she has so the right antibiotic works.
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Reply to bevthegreat
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Please find a good urologist, one who is committed to prevention, rather than waiting for a crisis. There are a number of things a urologist can suggest to help maintain a healthy bladder and urethra, thereby preventing a UTI.

I had UTI’s for years. Took all kinds of antibiotics, became resistant to some, got sepsis, was miserable. I got a new urologist who believed in prevention and keeping a healthy bladder & urethra. I have not had a UTI since and, believe me, I am much happier.
it can be done.
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Momheal1 Jun 1, 2021
Can I ask what the urologist gave you that seemed to help. Greatly appreciate it - Thanks
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A bidet would be a good idea. She need to wash after every bowel movement and use a small clean towel every time.
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Reply to patricia25
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Best option yet is one I've been using myself for 30 years: Apple Cider Vinegar. I'm now 72, used to get UTI's all the time. I take 2 Tbsp. daily, 1 Tbsp. in water after breakfast and 1 Tbsp. in water before bed. Any amount of water is fine if the taste is unpleasant. The ACV should be Organic, "with the Mother" (pulp). Bragg's is best brand, or Trader Joe's. Doctors don't suggest this remedy since Big Pharma has too many remedies to sell (NONE of which help for long~!) This is "grandma medicine" -- cheap, available and actually WORKS~!
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Reply to Joliandra
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Yes, we've had the same problem - UTIs continually for over two years. After going to a male urologist for years, we finally found a female gyno-urologist that specializes in female urinary track problems. After an initial dose of strong antibiotics and AZO for the pain, she suggested the following on an on-going basis: 1) 1/2 gr of Hippurate; 2) 250mg of cephalexin; 3) of course, extra consumption of water and/or cranberry juice; 4) elimination of all typical papers and pads that are 'scented' (these have chemicals in them that are harm for people with low immunity levels); 5) substitute those with natural papers/pads made with bamboo which you can purchase online. This comprehensive approach eliminated the urinary track infections for good. Hope it helps!
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Reply to CarolPeaches
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My 81 yr old mom experience the same scenario over the last year. Finally was able to see a urologist and had multiple super large infected kidney stones! After a series of lithotripsy treatments, she’s finally UTI free.
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Reply to tippytoes63
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If you haven't been to a urologist, go see one. My mom got a medicine that finally resolved her issues. Tamsulosin. I think it also has another name, but it escapes my mind at the moment. It dilatates the tube coming out of bladder to allow better emptying of the bladder. Worked for her.

UTI definitely causes dementia like symptoms, confusion, angry outbursts - behavior not normal for the patient. If your mom still has UTI after a round of antibiotics, those pills are not clearing it up. Just relieving it for a brief period. And antibiotics that don't fix the problem have to be stronger to kill surviving bacterias.
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BarbBrooklyn May 9, 2021
Flomax is the brand name.
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Make sure she is drinking alot of fluids. Smoothies help. Cranberry pills are highly effective. You can buy them at any store that sells vitamins.
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I myself have been fighting UTI's since I was a kid...certain foods are a trigger...I take Triple Cranberry Softgels by Nature's Bounty...take them all day long with lots of water and it flushes it out...too many antibiotics isn't good and may lead to yeast infections...You can't overdose on the Cranberry pills...stay away from sugary juices or sodas as they feed an infection.
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Reply to oldthing
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Imho, overuse of antibiotics will actually do more harm than good. No wonder the infection stays with her "for many years." Try cranberry capsules.
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Reply to Llamalover47
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Hatethis....
Get your poor mom Off the antibiotics! They will do more harm than good.
Instead, get her taking D-Mannose....a health supplement, in capsule form....also feed her food with fresh garlic, and, if she can swallow another capsule every day, you can make up your own capsule filled with oregano oil, but be very, very careful with this oil as it's Potent. It will kill every pathogen, fungus, bacteria, virus, any parasite....but, avoid getting this potent oil on your skin or hers, or in the eyes, anywhere but inside the capsule, which will be delivered via water to the stomach.
These things will clear up her repeating UTI's....but, she'll need to keep taking the D-Mannose supplements, ok.
May God be with you and your precious mother....Happy Mother's Day! 💖💖💖
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UTIs are the worst pain I have ever felt. I, too was suffering from them for years and had tried everything. Then on my of my visits to my heart doctor I mentioned how miserable I was with the anticipation of getting one and she recommended that I try Vitamin C time release 500 mg twice a day. This was over a year ago and so far I have been UTI free. She said at my age (80) and due to the aging process UTIs become more prevalent in some people. Whatever the reason, I am keeping my supply of Vitamin C stocked up.
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My MIL, 92, had repeated UTIs for years. About 2 years ago, she was awaiting a heart procedure and it kept being put off due to the UTIs, one resulting in sepsis. We got her to a Urogynecologist, who put her on a regimen of 1) daily low-dose antibiotic (Trimethoprim), 2) oral probiotic (Culturelle brand) daily, 3) estrogen creme inserted just inside the vagina 3x/week at bedtime, 4) 2000 mg Vitamin C daily (2x 500 mg chewables at breakfast and lunch), 5) As much hydration as she can tolerate, which is a balancing act due to her congestive heart failure. She finally had the heart valve replacement which made a huge difference in her energy level, and she was without UTI for quite awhile.

She has again become less active and the UTIs are back. We keep sterile specimen cups on hand and her doctor made a standing order for urine cultures at the lab, so when her symptoms are pretty much unmistakable, weakness and urge without ability to void, we collect a sample and take it to the lab so she doesn't have to physically travel 45 minutes to get there. There is a particularly tenacious bacteria, a Pseudomonas, which is only sensitive to a few antibiotics , most of which she is allergic to. That's the one she gets most often, of course. So we have also added D-Mannose 500 mg 2x daily, and the Dr considered adding Hiprex daily or every other but the pharmacist said her kidney function is too low to tolerate that drug.

We have gotten quite an education on UTIs in the elderly. The first lesson was that symptoms are not the same as in a younger person. Second, hydration is essential, and if the pt doesn't like water, give diluted juice or add a small amount of flavor, and push those fluids! No caffeine, it dehydrates! Make sure the lab does cultures so they know what bacteria they are dealing with and what Rx will kill it. It takes a few days longer for the Dx but you are not giving useless antibiotics in the meantime. I personally think a bidet would be useful (though MIL is very fastidious and knows which way to wipe), but installing one in her tiny bathroom could be problematic, so I gave her an small, empty dishwashing liquid squeeze bottle that she fills and uses after a bowel movement. Just be sure to keep an eye on it to make sure she's not keeping water in it all the time, as it will grow algae, or something with a cloudy appearance.

Sorry this post is so long, but there is a lot of info to share, and I think it probably takes a combination, and to find just the right mix for a particular patient. Good luck!
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rusti40 May 9, 2021
By the way, a bidet is very helpful and can be installed on your existing toilet. They are very reasonable priced. I got mine through Amazon. I would not be without it now.
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Didn't read all the posts but just need to say...antibiotics are not effective if used longterm. You need a culture. The only way they can find out what bacteria they are dealing with. The last one my Mom had she was hospitalized. They catherized her to get all the urine in her bladder. She had IV antibiotics. She was put on cranberry tablets and a probiotic. Probiotic more because of the antibiotics. But it was continued at her NH as were the tablets.

It has been mentioned on the forum that maybe the type of incontinence supplies being used is the problem. The materials used, the fragrance. Me, I can't use Kotex products. I switched to cotton briefs years ago. Years ago my daughter was getting UTIs. We cut out bubble baths, started using cotton undies. Found out it was the colored toilet paper I was using. Note: u haven't seen colored toilet paper for years. Should not be using any powder ot feminine sprays either.

Its hard as we get older but you have to completely void. I wondered why the aides would leave my MIL on the toilet a little longer. Maybe its so they void completely. Keep as clean as possible. I always used Huggies wipes on Mom. Big and thick. Lots of water intake.
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Reply to JoAnn29
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My mom's gyno recommended Vagifem and a probiotic called rePhresh. No more UTIs.
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My mom had frequent asymptomatic UTIs. When she was admitted to the ER after her most recent fall (and a temp of 101) numerous tests were done. It was determined that she had a “very large” kidney stone that was, more than likely, the cause of the UTIs and sepsis. Due to her age (96) and other medical reasons, surgery was not an option. Admitted to hospice, mom was under comfort care for 9 days until her death. With previous UTIs, mom was put on antibiotics; cranberry juice did help at times. Yes, with each UTI her late onset dementia also noticeably worsened. Unfortunately, mom’s scenario has no answers for you...but it does give a very brief overview of her experiences.
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Reply to rlljvl20
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A cranberry pill called Ellura has been a huge help to my husband, and I can't image why it wouldn't work for women--though you could ask the company or your pharmacist. I used to have what felt like UTIs one after another and was given antibiotics one after another. Then my GYN recommended Vagifem (Yuvifem generic). It absolutely solved the problem because what I was feeling all the time were symptoms of--but not actually--UTIs. I haven't had a UTI for many years now.
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