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Take a seat, ladies, because you’re about to get all the information you need to help avoid a UTI. While nothing is absolute, there are a few tips to keep in mind if you want to give yourself a great chance of avoiding urinary tract infections and their uncomfortable symptoms. Not familiar with UTI pain? You’re lucky—50 to 60 percent of adult women have had at least one UTI in their lives!1 Either way, read on to find out the dos and don’ts to help you avoid a UTI!
What to Do
Sometimes the actions we take increase our risk of getting a urinary tract infection. As a rule of thumb, remember to do the following:
- Pee after Sex
Sex with a male partner can introduce a plethora of bacteria to the urethra as a result of the friction during intimacy.2 For this reason, make sure to pee after sex in order to help keep potentially harmful bacteria from sticking to the walls of the urinary tract.2 By creating a pee “jet stream,” you have a greater chance of helping to push bacteria out of the urinary tract.2 This is especially important for women when they first become sexually active, because they tend to get UTIs, and peeing after sex may help.2
- Wear Loose Clothes
Those skinny jeans may be hot fashion-wise, but they are also hot temperature-wise. Wearing tight clothing can trap moisture and heat, creating the perfect environment for bacteria growth.3 Choose loose fitting outfits instead!
- Pay Attention to Your Pee
The color of your urine gives you information about the health of your body.4 Many times, you could avoid a UTI by staying hydrated,5 so if you notice your pee is amber, brown or orange, you could be lacking water—time to drink up!4
What NOT to Do
- Hold in Your Pee
Urination is essential to empty the bladder to help flush the urinary tract.6 Most women can hold their pee for three to six hours, depending on fluid intake, but the truth is that holding your pee puts you at a greater risk of developing a UTI.6 As stated above, urination helps flush the urinary tract of the bacteria that may cause UTIs.
- Wipe from Back to Front
If you want to avoid a UTI, one of the biggest no-nos of urinary tract maintenance is to wipe from back to front after using the bathroom. To help prevent bacteria in the anal region from spreading to the urethra,7 make sure you wipe from front to back.
So there you have it, ladies. Follow these simple rules and you’ll have a greater chance of avoiding a UTI!
1 Steamy Nights, Painful Mornings? The Facts About UTIs http://www.onemedical.com/blog/live-well/steamy-nights-painful-mornings-get-the-facts-about-utis
2 The Link Between UTIs and Sex http://www.everydayhealth.com/urinary-tract-infections/the-link-between-utis-and-sex.aspx
3 Your Guide to Urinary Tract Infections http://www.webmd.com/women/guide/your-guide-urinary-tract-infections?page=3
4 What the Color of Your Urine Says About You http://health.clevelandclinic.org/2013/10/what-the-color-of-your-urine-says-about-you-infographic
5 Top Six Triggers of Urinary Tract Infections for Women http://pacificurology.com/top-six-triggers-urinary-tract-infections-women
6 Is it Harmful to Hold in Your Pee? http://www.womenshealthmag.com/health/is-it-bad-to-hold-your-pee
7 Urinary Tract Infection (Prevention) http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/urinary-tract-infection/basics/prevention/con-20037892