Is your UTI med giving you CANCER?

It's a drug many women end up taking months or even YEARS at a time.

And even then, it doesn't always solve the problem.

If you have regular battles with urinary infections, then you probably know the names of common antibiotic drugs a little too well... because you've taken them ALL, maybe multiple times.

But new research shows why it's time to toss the meds and find something better -- because women who take antibiotics frequently can face a higher risk of something a whole lot worse than a painful UTI.

Turns out, these drugs can increase your risk of adenomas, or the polyps in the colon that can lead to cancer.

The study finds that taking the meds for two months or more between the ages of 20 and 39 will increase the risk of adenomas by 36 percent.

But as you get older, the risk rises... dramatically.

Taking the meds for two months between the ages of 40 and 59 will increase the risk of those adenomas by 69 percent.

The reason is likely the change in bacteria levels that hit when you take these drugs. The good ones your body needs die off, and bad ones -- including the ones known to appear in cancer patients -- can grow, take hold, and cause the inflammation and other damage that'll set the stage for polyps.

What makes this especially concerning is that the biggest increase in risk is in growths in the proximal colon. While these polyps can often be detected and removed by colonoscopy, they can be missed completely by an increasingly common "alternative" called a sigmoidoscopy.

Call it one more reason to get a full colonoscopy -- especially if you have a history of antibiotic use.

But that's hardly the only way these drugs can hurt you. The use and overuse of the antibiotics have been linked to irritable and inflammatory bowl conditions, celiac disease, and more.

Sometimes, you need the drugs anyway, despite the risks. Sometimes, they might even save your life.

But other times, you don't.

The study didn't look at all the specific conditions the meds were given out for, but one of the most common reasons women end up taking antibiotics for months at a time or more are those UTIs I mentioned earlier.

If that's your battle, I've got good news for you today: You often don't need these drugs to fight this condition, end the pain, and stop it from recurring.

One study a few years back found that probiotic supplements are nearly as effective as antibiotics -- but, unlike the drugs, these good bacteria pack benefits instead of risks.

Combine them with cranberry extract -- which can also cut the risk of the infections and cure them when they strike -- and you might never need to take an antibiotic again.