3 UTI Misconceptions That Keep You Stuck in the Cycle

May 13, 2024

If you're reading this, you likely know how it feels to be caught in the frustrating cycle of bladder infections and the painful symptoms that come with it. As a highly knowledgeable care provider  dealing with chronic bladder infections for over a decade, I've seen countless patients who have struggled with recurrent infections for so long that they can feel like there’s no end in sight. 

But through my time working with patients, I’ve noticed some patterns in the information they’ve been given. They often come to me with misconceptions that I believe play a role in the constant return of symptoms. So let’s break down the three most common misconceptions that might be keeping you stuck in this cycle:

Misconception #1: Antibiotics are the only solution

It's a very common belief that antibiotics are the go-to, no-fail solution for UTIs. While, yes, they can provide temporary relief, I would never advise my patients to rely solely on antibiotics as a solution. In fact, doing so can perpetuate the cycle of dependency and increase your antibiotic resistance, making them less effective in the long term.

In my experience, many patients find themselves back at square one as soon as the antibiotics wear off because the underlying factors that contribute to their infections haven't been addressed. That's why it's crucial to explore holistic approaches that address the root cause of UTIs and promote long-term healing.

Misconception #2: UTIs are solely caused by bacteria

While bacterial infections are a common cause of UTIs, assuming they're the only factor to consider overlooks other important influencers. 

When I look at a patient who is suffering from UTIs that keep coming back, I always consider the whole picture. This can include things like lifestyle habits, hormonal imbalances, and even structural abnormalities in the urinary tract.

By focusing solely on bacterial treatment, we often miss the bigger picture and unfortunately that leads to underlying issues remaining unaddressed.

Misconception #3: UTIs are a normal part of life

Navigating the medical system can be challenging – especially for women. Too often, women’s pain is minimized or their symptoms are dismissed. One of the worst things I’ve heard from patients is that they’ve been told to just “accept that UTIs are common” because they’re “just part of life.”

While it may be true that the rare occurrences of acute UTIs can’t entirely be avoided, anyone who suffers from chronic bladder symptoms knows that living with the painful reality of chronic UTIs is not an acceptable way to live.

Chronic or recurrent infections should never be considered “normal.” Yes, they’re common. But they’re not normal. Accepting them as inevitable prevents you from seeking the comprehensive care you need – and deserve – to address underlying issues and prevent future infections. 

Break the UTI Cycle: Dispelling 3 Common Misconceptions

Antibiotics are not always the holy grail of answers; bacterial infection doesn’t always explain recurrence; and complacency is unacceptable. Challenging these three very common misconceptions and adopting a holistic approach to treatment is a huge part of breaking free from the chronic cycle, and it is possible.


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