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UTI, STD, or pregnancy?

Looking for a UTI test? Are you having some discomfort and wondering if something’s going on with your health? If you notice something different with your body, it’s important to get info to figure out what’s happening so you can take care of yourself. 

I’m a nurse here at ThriVe+, and I can help you figure out what’s going on. You’ve found a safe place —the Nurse’s Corner at ThriVe+. I’m here with up-to-date medical info so you can get the answers you need. This info can help you know if you should get a UTI test, or some other check-up.

Let’s talk about UTIs and STDs and see if we can make sense of your symptoms.

 UTI test given at the doctor’s office

All about UTIs

What is a UTI?

A urinary tract infection (UTI) is an infection in any part of your urinary system. That includes your kidneys, bladder, and urethra.1 They’re really common, especially in women. You shouldn’t feel ashamed if you’ve got something going on. Most of us women go through this at some point! You can buy a UTI test at many stores or pharmacies, or visit your health provider if you have symptoms. UTIs are usually treated with a round of antibiotics.

Causes of UTIs:

1. Female Anatomy: Women have shorter urethras. Bacteria can reach the bladder more easily.1

2. Sexual Intercourse: Sex can introduce bacteria into your urinary tract. It can also put you at risk for STDs. We’ll talk more about that below.1

3. Certain Contraceptives: Using diaphragms or spermicides can increase your risk of getting a UTI.1

4. Pregnancy: UTIs are common during pregnancy.2 If you think you might be pregnant, keep reading. We’ll talk about some of the early signs below.

5. Personal Hygiene: Improper wiping (back to front) can push bacteria into the urethra. Wiping front to back is the best practice for women.1

6. Dehydration: Getting plenty of good old H2O? Not drinking enough water can put you at risk for UTIs. When you’re well-hydrated, urine flushes the bacteria out of the urinary tract before an infection can begin. If you think you might have a UTI, a UTI test can help you know whether you need treatment.

7. Diabetes: Do you have diabetes? Diabetes and other diseases can impair your body’s ability to fight off germs. This can raise your risk of UTIs.1

Symptoms of a UTI, STDs, and pregnancy

Let’s talk about the symptoms of UTIs, STDs, and pregnancy.. Have you experienced any of these symptoms lately? If you have, make sure to talk with your healthcare provider to get the treatment you need. 

Note that at ThriVe+, we offer no cost STD screenings and lab-quality pregnancy tests. If you think you might be pregnant or need an STD screening, make an appointment to protect your health and get answers. Your health shouldn’t come at a cost. We’re pro-woman, and that’s why we offer all of our women’s services at no cost. But for now, let’s take a closer look at the symptoms of UTIs, STDs, and pregnancy:

Symptoms of a UTI:

  • Pain or burning when you pee
  • Feeling like you need to pee all the time, even if little comes out
  • Cloudy, dark, or strong-smelling pee
  • Pain in your lower belly or back1

STD symptoms

STDs can have some symptoms that overlap with UTIs. This list doesn’t include all of the possible symptoms of STDs because there are a variety of them, but they often include:

  • Unusual discharge from your vagina
  • Itching or irritation
  • Pain during sex
  • Sores or bumps around your genital  area3

It’s important to know that STDs don’t always show symptoms. If you’ve been sexually active, STD screenings are the only way to know for sure whether you have an STD.3

Early signs of pregnancy

If you think you might be pregnant, some early signs include:

  • Missed period
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Tender breasts
  • Fatigue
  • Cramping
  • Increased urination4
  •  Unusual vaginal discharge5

 Young woman and nurse discuss the results of a UTI test.

So, how do you find out?

As you can see, sometimes the symptoms of UTIs, STDs, and pregnancy can overlap. Symptoms like increased urination, lower abdominal pain, and vaginal discharge could indicate several different conditions.

How can you know whether you’re pregnant, have a UTI, or have an STD?

Get tested!

You can see your doctor for a UTI test, or come see us at ThriVe+ for a pregnancy test and STD screening.

Whatever you’re facing, please know that you’re not alone. If you do have an STD or a pregnancy, you’ve got what it takes to get through it. I believe in you. There are resources and treatments to help you, no matter what’s going on.  

So, you’ve taken a look at the list of symptoms. Did you see any that look consistent with your experience? The next step is to get checked out to be certain.

Here’s what you can do to find out for sure:

1. Take a Pregnancy Test: If there’s a chance you could be pregnant, this is the quickest way to know. Make an appointment at ThriVe+ for a confidential, no-cost, lab quality pregnancy test.

2. Visit a Medical Professional: Your doctor can do a urine test to get a UTI test and/or STD screening. If you’d like to get STD testing with a supportive environment and no cost, come see us at ThriVe+.

3. Pay Attention to Symptoms: Note any unusual discharge, sores, or pain during sex, which can indicate an STD rather than a UTI.

Can you prevent a UTI?

Like we mentioned before, UTIs are very common in women (thanks, short urethra!). But there are a few things you can do to lessen the likelihood of getting a UTI. 

  • Drink Plenty of Water: Staying hydrated helps flush out bacteria.
  • Wipe Front to Back: This prevents bacteria from spreading to the urethra.
  • Avoid Irritating Products: Steer clear of douches, powders, and sprays that can irritate the urinary tract.1

Getting more help

If you’re feeling unsure or need more help, ThriVe+ is a great resource. We’re a women’s center offering medically-accurate info about women’s health. It’s so important to listen to your body and get answers to your questions. We’ll have your back no matter what.

If you think you might have a UTI, visit your doctor for a UTI test. Remember, it’s always okay to ask for help. Please prioritize your health

If you think you might be pregnant or have an STD, don’t hesitate to make an appointment with us to get a no-cost STD screening and pregnancy test. Your health is really important. Please take care of yourself, and give yourself grace. You are worthy of respect. 





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