Mar 28, 2019
There are certain medical ailments that no one really wants to deal with, and urinary tract infections definitely fit that category. Statistics say that 50-60% of women will deal with a UTI in their lifetime, but it's not always practical to sit in a doctor's office waiting half a day to see a GP. You also may want something to alleviate your symptoms until you can get to your GP.
If you want to go down the over the counter route here in Japan though, there are medications that are filled with herbs and other natural ingredients to try and rid your body of the bacteria causing the infection. I imagine that they could also be helpful if you get recurrent UTI's as a way of preventing them. One of those medications is Bokoren (ボーコレン) and you'll be able to find it in just about every drug store in Japan. It's also stocked on Amazon Japan if that's easier for you - just follow this link!
Inside the box, you'll find the tablets enclosed in a zip-lock pouch - the tablets are just loose inside the pouch itself. The directions on the box for adults say to take 4 tablets three times daily. There are 48 tablets in the pouch, so you've got four days worth. Apparently the tablets are also safe for children from 5 years old, just at a lowered dosage.
The tablets as I mentioned use natural remedies to try and heal your body - mainly herbs that are known for having anti inflammatory properties, including licorice root and peony. They do have quite a strong herbal smell, so have something ready to chase them down with.
The ingredients found in these over the counter UTI meds.
One thing I will note is that if you still feel like you have symptoms of a UTI after taking these herbal meds, head to your doctor! Antibiotics are the next step - and if left untreated, a UTI can progress to a kidney infection which has a whole different set of problems and risks associated with it. Sure, it can be annoying having to spend half your day at the doctor's office just to get a prescription for more medication, but it's better than the alternative! Also, if you're pregnant, head straight to your doctor - certain herbs aren't advised during pregnancy, and a UTI when pregnant is even more important to treat with antibiotics to prevent premature delivery.
After spending the last several years in the beating heart of Tokyo, I will be spending the next three in the countryside of Japan. I adore this country and all it has to offer - and I'm always learning more and more about life here as I go along!