When Can I Go To Urgent Care For A UTI?

Written By Abeer Fatima
Medically Reviewed By Dr. Adnan Maqsood


Family Urgent Care is one of the fastest-growing providers of urgent medical care and telehealth. We have 3 locations in the heart of Chicago and Schererville. No appointments are required, and most clinics are open seven days a week, to treat non-life-threatening illnesses and injuries.

Severe discomfort in the lower abdomen or feeling pain while urinating can make you feel uncertain about whether your symptoms indicate a UTI or another condition. When you face such symptoms, you might get lost in a maze of seeking care at an urgent care clinic or an emergency facility.

In this blog, you’re about to clear up your confusion regarding what facility to visit when you have a mild or severe UTI. From understanding the urgency of your symptoms to knowing what to expect at the doctor’s office, we’ll guide you through making the right decision for your health. 

Let’s find out the answers you’ve been searching for about urgent care or emergency care visits for UTIs and also learn some proactive steps to prevent this painful infection in the future. 

When Should You Go To Urgent Care For A UTI?

Healthcare professionals at urgent care facilities can help you treat urinary tract infections, but before that, you need to be aware of when to visit urgent care for a UTI.

  1. If you suffer from the following symptoms

Suppose you are suffering from symptoms such as vomiting, fever, lower abdominal discomfort, frequent urination, difficulty in urination, and urine that seems cloudy or blood-stained, foul-smelling. In that case, you need to either walk into a nearby urgent care clinic or book a prior appointment.

  1. If symptoms don’t improve

You might have been taking medicines or using at-home remedies but if your symptoms aren’t improving within 2 to 3 days, you need to visit a healthcare provider. Your doctor will assess your symptoms, perform lab tests and recommend changes in your current medicines, if necessary. 

  1. You experience recurrent UTI infection

If you’ve completed your treatment plan for UTI but suspect concerning symptoms again, you need to contact a doctor immediately. Recurrent UTI infections can be due to various reasons, such as antibiotic-resistant bacteria, poor compliance with drugs, urinary retention or others, etc. 

  1. If you’ve underlying medical conditions

If you have any underlying medical conditions, it’s crucial not to delay seeking treatment for urinary tract symptoms. Certain conditions like diabetes, kidney disease, or a weakened immune system can make a person more susceptible to complications from a UTI, such as kidney infections or sepsis.

Therefore, visiting an urgent care clinic promptly allows healthcare professionals to assess your condition and provide appropriate treatment to prevent complications and promote speedy recovery.

  1. Pregnancy

UTIs are indeed quite common in pregnant females due to several factors making it easier for bacteria to grow and cause infection. As the uterus expands, it can put pressure on the bladder, reducing its ability to empty completely and increasing the risk of bacterial growth. 

If you leave it untreated, UTIs during pregnancy can lead to complications such as kidney infections or preterm labor. 

Therefore, it’s essential for pregnant individuals experiencing symptoms of a UTI to seek prompt medical attention to ensure the health of both themselves and their unborn child.

When Should I Go To The Emergency Room For A UTI?

Not all cases of UTI can be treated in urgent care centers. If you have the following symptoms, you might need to rush to the ER, as ignoring or delaying the symptoms might lead to further complications:

  • You have visited urgent care already, but the symptoms don’t improve.
  • Persistent fever of more than 101 F.
  • Continuous vomiting and abdominal pain.
  • You notice frequent blood in the urine.
  • You suspect upper UTI symptoms such as a fever of more than 103 F, pain in the lower back or side, bloody urine, etc. 

A word of caution! Do not ignore any symptoms that need urgent medical attention, as there are chances that the pathogen might enter the bloodstream. In the ER, an IV course of medications such as antibiotics, painkillers, and fever-reducing medicine is given to prevent further complications. 

What Can You Expect At The Doctor’s Office?

Once you visit an urgent care center for an uncomplicated or complicated UTI, you can expect a combination of the following:

  • Your doctor will take your medical history
  • Ask you about your current symptoms
  • Order some lab tests (urinalysis, urine culture, or CBC)
  • Imaging tests if the tools are available. 
  • Physical exam if needed.

The doctor then determines your appropriate treatment based on the severity of the infection and additional medical conditions. If you have a severe infection along with other complications, you might also be referred to a specialized clinic by your urgent care doctor. 

5 Quick Tips To Prevent UTI In The Future

During a urinary tract infection, abdominal pain and burning can feel irritating, especially if the symptoms recur again and again. Although you might have tried antibiotics to clear up the bacteria in your body, there are some steps you can take to prevent getting UTI again. 

According to the CDC, here are some steps you can take to prevent UTI: 

  1. Keep yourself hydrated by drinking plenty of water and fluids. 
  2. Avoid holding your urine for more than an hour. 
  3. Clean your genital areas properly.
  4. Avoid products that can irritate the genital area. 
  5. Avoid bubble baths, as the soap irritates the urinary tract. 

Note that taking precautions is crucial in avoiding UTIs, so once you prioritize and implement the safety measures, you can effectively minimize the risk of contracting urinary tract infections (UTIs), allowing you to maintain optimal well-being and quality of life.

How Can Family Urgent Care Help Treat UTIs?

All in all, dealing with urinary tract infections can feel like a pain in the neck if the symptoms keep coming back. But worry not! Whenever you suspect a urinary tract infection, don’t hesitate to contact Family Urgent Care for quick assistance from experienced healthcare professionals. 

You can walk into our clinic or even book an appointment if you live near Rogers Park or Lincoln Park in Chicago, or in Schrereville in Indiana. 

Our experienced healthcare professionals will listen to your complaint carefully, assess your symptoms, take lab tests if necessary and prescribe you appropriate medicines to recover fully from UTI. So, do not delay getting your treatment and contact us right away. 

However, if you can’t leave your home or office due to any reason, you can still visit our doctors online by booking a telehealth appointment for UTI. 

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