Is there a Correlation between UTIs and Dementia?
The symptoms of urinary tract infections (UTIs) in younger people are distinct or easily identifiable, and they include lower back pain, increased urge to urinate, abdominal pain, and painful urination. However, in older people whose immune systems have experienced significant changes, the body response to urinary tract infection can be very different. Rather than the distinct effects, UTI symptoms could manifest with noticeable signs of disorientation or uti and confusion, increased level of agitation, and even withdrawal.
What are UTIs?
Urinary tract infections occur when bacteria enters the urinary tract through the urethra and find their way into the bladder and kidneys. The shorter the urethras, the easier it is for these germs to travel up into the bladder – and that is why UTIs are more common among women.
Medical conditions such as weak immune systems or kidney problems expose patients to the risk of UTIs. In addition, women who have experienced menopause also face increased risk of UTIs since they lack estrogen – a hormone which defends fights against the development of bacteria in the urethra.
Antibiotics are effective in treating urinary tract infections. When the right antibiotics are used, UTI and its effects seize. However, it is ideal that you contact a specialist if symptoms persist.
This is a combination of different medical conditions that decrease body’s ability to function optimally. Dementia occurs due to damage to the nerves and cells in the brain. When these cells are damaged, nerve and cellular communication becomes impossible – and the lack of this communication leads to reduced cognitive function and memory loss.
Urinary Tract Infections and Dementia
As stated earlier, older adults with UTI do not experience distinct symptoms. Instead, they may experience increased signs of confusion, agitation, or withdrawal. In older people with dementia, these changes in behavior may be due to the effects of UTI.
The individual may be unable to express how they feel, and if diagnosis is not properly carried out, this may come across as signs of advancing age. Hence, it is important that appropriate medical help is gotten for such one so they can get proper treatment, and prevent this UTI from becoming life-threatening.
Is Urinary tract Infection a Sign of Dementia?
UTIs can worsen the symptoms of dementia, but it does not necessarily indicate the presence of dementia. According to the Alzheimer’s Society, urinary tract infections can cause distressing changes in behavior for individuals with Alzheimer’s.
These behavioral changes, known as delirium, can develop within a period of one to two days. In the same vein, UTIs can exacerbate the progression of dementia – major reasons caregivers need to understand how to identify these effects and limit them in older adults.