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Sexual Cystitis & Bladder Inflammation
Sexual cystitis describes urethral and bladder inflammation. Because it originates from sexual intercourse, its treatment is different from cystitis, although the main symptoms are the same - burning pain when passing urine plus intense urgency and frequency of urination. A chronic pattern of inflammation is easily established in susceptible women.
Women have a short urethra and it lies right in front of the vagina. During penetrative intercourse the heat and friction created can damage sensitive urethral tissue and cause almost immediate problems in the cells that line the urethra. Largely ignored by the medical profession, it was a woman sufferer who identified both cause and effective treatment. Angela Kilmartin is the acknowledged expert on the management of sexual cystitis. Her protocols are based on planning ahead for sex and include cooling down the perineum immediately after intercourse as well as maintaining a high fluid intake before and after sex, avoiding alcohol, and changing sexual positions to minimise bruising. Sensitised women need to pay particular attention to sleep and comfort as well as using protocols after sex to stay cool and comfortable.
Foods & herbs for the home
- Reducing the acidity levels of urine will minimise burning pain. Bladder inflammation is aggravated by highly acid-forming food and drinks. Coffee and tea (especially with sugar), alcohol, and soda drinks are all acid-forming and stoke the fire of inflammation so avoid these drinks.
- Instead use alkalising drinks such as fresh lemon juice in spring water.
- Put 3 tsp of apple cider vinegar into unsweetened apple juice mixed with water and drink a total of 2 litres before and after sex.
- Organic Onion & Horseradish Concentrate is warming and highly alkalising. It can be taken as a cold drink.
- Drink as much alkalising fluid as possible: 1-2 litres per day. You want to cool things down and flush the system through so any attempt to avoid high fluid intake is counterproductive.
- Cranberries have compounds that prevent bacteria from sticking to the bladder wall (where they reproduce) and are excellent fruit and drink choices. It can be best to avoid commercial cranberry drinks, however: the berries are sour so most commercial drinks are high in added sugar, which is highly acid-forming. But you can purchase dried cranberry powder to mix with apple juice. Also soak frozen or fresh cranberries in water or apple juice overnight. Learn more about this effective fruit by downloading a free book by Jill Davies who has written extensively about Cranberry.
- Organic Pot Barley and lemon are two superb anti-inflammatory foods. A recipe to make a delicious lemon barley water is provided on the Pot Barley page.
- Organic Parsley & Cornsilk Herbal Tea contains herbs that are detoxifying, soothing and supportive for the bladder and urinary tract.
- Fresh parsley and fresh dandelion leaf can be beneficial and can be added to salads as well as soups and casseroles.
- Raw foods are alkalising. Add a small raw food salad before meals and you will also strengthen your overall immune system and digestion. Too much raw food, however (especially in cold weather) will not suit all constitutions. If you are a "cold" type of person and underweight then be moderate with your intake of cold foods.
- Wash or rinse with cool water immediately after sex to reduce the heat that has built up and can inflame the cells that line the urethra and bladder. Avoid hot baths and showers for 24 hours.
- Wear a long skirt or baggy trousers and no underwear if possible. Alternatively wear loose fitting cotton or silk underwear. Avoid tight constricting clothing made from man-made fibres.
- Act immediately. Drink your chosen cool beverage, cool down the perineum, stay undressed and then cuddle up.
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