Prostatitis is as an infection of the prostate gland but can also be an inflammation of the prostate with no sign of infection. Only about 10% of reported cases are actually caused by bacterial infection. Men of all ages can be affected by prostatitis but the condition is most common in men under the age of 50, and can either be an acute illness or a chronic condition. Prevention of prostatitis involves taking a number of lifestyle and dietary changes toward maintaining prostate health. Understanding the condition and what symptoms to look for is the first step toward learning how to prevent prostatitis.
The symptoms associated with the disease will vary depending on the underlying cause of prostatitis. Often a person may show no symptoms of the condition, while on other occasions symptoms may come on suddenly and severely, requiring emergency medical attention. The following are signs and symptoms that may be present with prostatitis:
- Frequent urge to urinate.
- Difficulty urinating.
- Pain or burning during urination.
- Chills and fever.
- Groin pain, rectal pain, abdominal pain and/or lower back pain.
- Blood in the urine.
- Painful ejaculation.
How the prostate gland becomes infected is still unclear. However, certain conditions and medical procedures can increase the risk of developing prostatitis. These include:
- Insertion of any device, such as a urinary catheter, into the urethra.
- A recent bladder and/or urethral infection.
- Presence of a sexually transmitted disease (STD).
Tips toward preventing prostatitis
The following tips are just a few of the preventative measures you can take to help to reduce your chances of developing prostatitis. For more information and ways to help reduce your risk, you should set up a consultation with your doctor.
- Drink more water: Staying properly hydrated is essential for maintaining good prostate health. dehydration and urinary tract infections are risk factors for prostatitis and can worsen symptoms.
- Practice good hygiene: Keep your penis and surrounding area clean can greatly reduce your risk of infection.
- Reduce caffeine intake: Caffeinated beverages can irritate your prostate and worsen the symptoms of prostatitis.
- Practice safe sex: Certain sexually transmitted diseases, such as gonorrhea, can cause bacterial prostatitis. Practicing safe sex, by using a condom, will help towards reducing your risk for prostatitis.
- Exercise: Regular physical activity can have a huge impact on the prevention of both prostatitis and inflammation.
- Consume more fruits and vegetables: Fruits and vegetables contain high levels of antioxidants, vitamins and other nutrients that will help in fighting infections and inflammation.
- Maintain a healthy weight: Being overweight is detrimental to overall prostate health. Make the effort to shed some of those unwanted pounds.
Dr. Samadi is a board-certified urologic oncologist trained in open and traditional and laparoscopic surgery and is an expert in robotic prostate surgery. He is chairman of urology, chief of robotic surgery at Lenox Hill Hospital. He is a medical contributor for the Fox News Channel's Medical A-Team. Follow Dr. Samadi on Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, SamadiMD.com, davidsamadiwiki, davidsamadibio and Facebook.