Urinary tract infections are very common, especially among women and girls. The condition surfaces when the urinary bladder is infected with bacteria, resulting in pain, burning sensation, difficulty in passing urine, inflammation etc.
Though severe cases of urinary infections can be dangerous and require antibiotic treatment to prevent kidney damage, urinary tract infections can be treated easily with herbs if caught at the initial stage itself. Here are some potent herbal remedies to try.
Herbal Remedies for Urinary Tract Infection
This herb is a wonderful folk remedy for treating certain kinds of urinary tract infections. The active compound in uva ursi that acts on the infection is arbutin which known to have great antiseptic properties. However, the herb is known to cause several side effects and must not be taken without the guidance of a herbalist.
Uva ursi contains high amounts of tannins and this can cause liver damage if taken in excess. Uva ursi must not be taken if you are pregnant, breast-feeding or given to children.
Corn silk tea can be used for treating urinary tract infections as it has anti inflammatory and diuretic properties that can help deal with the infection. Take ½ an ounce of ginger extract and add three cups of water to this. Boil for five minutes and remove from the stove.
Add corn silk from two ears of corn and allow it to steep for 3-4 minutes. Corn silk sooths the urinary tract by coating the walls of the tract and preventing and reducing burning sensation and frequent urination.
Goldenseal is an immune boosting herb and is known to be used for the treatment of internal bleeding, liver problems, chronic fatigue syndrome etc. It is a natural antibiotic and contains a powerful anti microbial agent known as berberine. Berberine tampers with the way bacteria stick to the urinary tract and reduces its multiplication naturally.
Capsules, tinctures and liquid as well and tablets are available of goldenseal. 500 to 1000 mg is recommended thrice a day for adults. However, individual dosages may vary and one must never take goldenseal without consulting a medical provider. Again, this herb is not recommended for pregnant and breastfeeding women, people who are on blood thinning medications, tetracycline antibiotics etc.
Being anti inflammatory in nature, marshmallow roots can help in soothing the urinary tract and reducing the inflammation and burning sensation associated with urinary tract infection. A tea can be prepared form marshmallow root and taken for this purpose. For preparing the tea, take two teaspoons of marshmallow root that is chopped and add eight ounces of water to this. Bring the contents to a boil and reduce the flame and simmer for fifteen minutes.
Let it cool and drink 2-3 cups of this decoction a day. People who have high blood sugar levels and diabetics must be wary of taking marshmallow root teas it may alter blood sugar levels and interfere with the proper functioning of medications for diabetes. Marshmallow root tea can also be given to children in diluted dosages. However, it is best to seek the help of a medical practitioner before you embark on such self medications for kids.
Horsetail is a very strong diuretic and is known to be capable of increasing the urine output by about 30 percent. It is generally used for treating kidney problems, urinary incontinence, edemas, bladder as well as kidney stones and also urinary tract infections.
The dosage has to be carefully calculated after discussions with a herbal practitioner as the herb is known to cause several side effects and interactions leading to deficiencies like thiamine deficiency, low potassium levels, low blood sugar etc. It is also not safe for breastfeeding and pregnant women.
Yarrow is a cleansing herb and is known to have astringent as well as antibacterial properties that can help destroy the bacterial action in the urinary tract. Yarrow can be used alone or in severe cases of urinary tract infection, it can also be combined with uva ursi and marshmallow root to make a decoction that is strong enough to treat the infection within a couple of days.
Take one quart of boiling water and add half ounce of yarrow root alone or with half ounce of uva ursi and marshmallow roots. This has to be allowed to steep for at least four hours. Take 3-4 cups for five days to completely remove the urinary tract infection.
Parsley tea is recommended my many medical practitioners for treating kidney stones and urinary tract infections. The tea is known to give 100 percent relief from the symptoms. Prepare parsley tea by adding a handful of parsley leaves to one quart of boiling water. Simmer for an hour and then it can be taken hot all throughout the day for 6-7 days. Parsley will remove all the bacteria from the intestine and urinary tract and aid in better immunity as well.
Parsley leaves can also be eaten or added to your meals for treating the urinary tract infection. The vitamin C in parsley helps in boosting the immune system as well, thereby speeding up the healing mechanism. Parsley may cause uterine stimulation and may not be suitable when you are pregnant. Speak to your herbalist for possible side effects and interactions.
Dandelion root is a diuretic and helps in flushing out the bacteria that is causing the urinary tract infection. A tea can be prepared by adding one teaspoon of dandelion root powder to one cup of boiling water. Steep for fifteen minutes and take it several times a day. Dandelion capsules and tincture too can be taken with the help of a herbalist to increase the efficiency of this treatment and also to speed up the recovery process.
A tincture of dandelion can be prepared at home as well by adding thin slices of dandelion roots to 100 proof vodka and allowing it to get infused for about two months. One or two teaspoon can be taken every day for treating urinary tract infections.