Natural health with Sean McCarthy: Sinuses and recurring UTIs

Sean McCarthy gives his advice on sinuses and recurring UTIs

I am 81 years old, in good health and active. However, I’ve had a cough for three months, which is worse at night and in the morning. I believe the source of the problem is my sinuses. My doctor put me on antibiotics but there has not been much improvement. (When I cough I get a taste in my mouth.) To understand the underlying cause, the doctor has mentioned an X-ray. I would be grateful for any advice you can give me.

As it’s long-standing, your cough could be due to acid reflux. It could also be bronchitis (the taste could be an indicator or this). But you know your own body best, so your intuition could be correct and your sinuses are the root of the problem.

Staying hydrated is very important. This will help to thin mucus and help to drain it from irritated sinuses.

One of the simplest things to calm the coughing, particularly at night, is to apply a lot of any menthalatum vapour rub to both feet and put socks on going into bed. From my experience, this will certainly stop the night coughing and will allow you to get a quality sleep which in turn allows your body to begin the healing process.

Provided you do not suffer from diabetes, a good quality unprocessed natural honey would also be of great help because of its anti-bacterial and anti-viral properties. Boil four sliced unwaxed lemons (lots of vitamin C) in a pint of water and allow to cool before adding at least a teaspoon of local honey.

Gargling with hot salted water — Himilayan pink salt is best — can also help.

Also avoid dairy products as much as possible as these can irritate your condition.

I have suffered from recurring UTIs for the past seven years and have been prescribed a lot of antibiotics. My GP says it’s due to the narrowing of the tube from my bladder and the menopause. I had a procedure to have the tube stretched but the problem has returned. She now suggests I use a HRT cream. I am 68 years old and also experience leakage — and frequently — day and night. I take homoeopathic remedies which help.

While internally you can deal with the discomfort of the UTI, what is not so easy to deal with from an outward perspective is the frequency of having to find a toilet and the dread of leakage which can cause anxiety for you.

The fact you are having leakages and frequency issues probably means you are drinking fewer fluids when you should be drinking more to keep the kidneys flushed and prevent any bacteria building near the urethra’s opening, which is one of the areas where build up happens.

One of the exercises you can do to strengthen the muscles around your bladder. Next time you go to the bathroom urinate for the count of two and stop for a count of three then continue for a count of two, stop for three and so on. This will take practice for a number of weeks but it does work at helping prevent leakages.

Horsetail or ladies mantle and yarrow are herbs that are available generally but it is best to consult a professional about their use while a tea made from fresh thyme with fresh ginger root will also be of great benefit in your case. You should be drinking this four to five times a day while the UTI is active.

Sean McCarthy DBTh MIRCH is a holistic herbalist and a member of the International Register of Consultant Herbalists and Homeopaths (IRCH).



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