If you feel like you need to go to the bathroom, even though you just went, you may be dealing with a bladder infection. A bladder infection can occur when bacteria enters the urethra and then the bladder. The Mayo Clinic defines a urinary tract infection (UTI) as an infection that starts in your urinary system, which includes the bladder.
Basic symptoms. If you feel like you need to urinate more than usual or have pain and burning when you do urinate, you may have a bladder infection. These are the two most basic and common symptoms of bladder infections. You may notice these symptoms developing throughout a single day.
Pain. Like any other infections, symptoms will vary from person to person. You may notice only one or two symptoms, while someone else with a bladder infection may suffer with several. Other symptoms that may develop when you have a bladder infection include lower back pain or pain in the abdominal area.
Altered Urine. When your body is hydrated and healthy, your urine will be a pale yellowish to almost clear in color. A possible symptom of a bladder infection is cloudy urine. When you feel the frequent need to urinate or are experiencing any sort of pain during urination, check the color of your urine. If it appears cloudy, dark brown or otherwise out of the ordinary, you may have a bladder infection. Bloody urine may be a more serious sign of a bladder infection. Contact your doctor if you see any blood in your urine. Urine with a strong or unpleasant odor may be another symptom of a bladder infection.
Fever. When your body is fighting off an infection, you may experience a change in physical temperature. A low temperature fever and even slight chills can be indications of a bladder infection, especially if you're experiencing any pain with urination or suffering from frequent urination.
Severe symptoms. It's always a good idea to consult your doctor is you suspect you have a bladder infection, even if your symptoms appear mild, but some symptoms are much more urgent. Stomach spasms, severe abdominal pain and non-stop lower back pain are considered severe bladder infection symptoms and require a physician's care. If your bladder infection symptoms include a high fever, vomiting and bloody urine, see your doctor.