The symptoms inspire dread: frequent trips to the bathroom followed by burning urination. If you've ever had a urinary tract infection (UTI) before, odds are you know exactly how uncomfortable they can be.
"A UTI is simply a bacterial infection that involves the kidneys, ureters or bladder," says Dr. Nancy Simpkins, a board certified internist and medical consultant for the state of New Jersey. The body usually flushes these bacteria out without incident, but sometimes an infection can occur.
Though these particular infections are pretty common — the second most common type in the body, according to the National Institutes of Health -- and usually not as serious, they shouldn't be ignored either.
Here are 10 essential questions we have about UTIs, answered: