Bladder infections may not be something that your senior has dealt with much in the past, but you need to know what to watch for now. Quite often aging adults can have a bladder infection and have no idea that’s what is going on. This happens because of all the changes that your senior goes through as she ages. Here are a few signs to watch for.
Confusion and Cognitive Issues.
As odd as it might sound, sometimes the only indication you’ll have that something isn’t quite right is that your aging family member starts to act different than usual. She may be confused, argumentative, or have trouble thinking clearly. This can be terrifying to witness, but also terrifying for your senior to experience. She might even try to hide this symptom out of fear of what it might mean.
A Slight Fever.
Infections in general might come with a slight fever. That happens because the immune system tries to warm up the body to get rid of the offending bacteria. If the body becomes unhospitable enough to the bad bacteria, that’s a win for the immune system.
Frequent Unproductive Bathroom Trips.
Your elderly family member might start to visit the bathroom a lot more frequently, even if she’s just been. The problem with this is that the bladder is irritated and sends signals to your senior’s brain that she needs to go to the bathroom. Only, there isn’t anything in the bladder to void yet, so the trip isn’t productive.
Pain While Urinating.
If your senior mentions that she’s experiencing burning or other pain while she’s urinating, that’s a big sign that there’s something else going on. That pain occurs because the bladder and the urethra and surrounding areas are often inflamed and irritated. Add in the frequent urges to go, and the situation just becomes more painful.
Changes to the Urine.
Your senior’s urine might be different, too. If she mentions that it smells different or that it looks cloudy, her doctor should do a urinalysis. This test helps to narrow down exactly what bacteria is behaving badly and allows her doctor to recommend a course of action. The more quickly that you can get your senior to the doctor the faster she can get relief for the pain and the infection.
Your elderly family member might not display all of these symptoms, so it’s important to pay attention to her regular behavior. Notes from senior care providers about behaviors they’ve witnessed can help you immensely, especially if you’re not able to be with your senior as often as you’d like to be.