Ways to Reduce Your Risk of a Urinary Tract Infection

Posted on: 23 February 2022

As one of the most common women's illnesses, a urinary tract infection can soon bring your everyday activities to a halt. UTIs can range in severity, and at their worst, they can spread to your kidneys and cause damage. If you suffer from UTIs, here are some ways you can reduce your risk of developing one again.

Avoid Using Soap

Your genitals rely on a delicate balance of good bacteria and hygiene to stay healthy. If you regularly use soap, you may be eliminating some of the lactobacilli that prevent bad bacteria from gathering in your urethra. Rather than relying on soap, use water when you shower. Similarly, if you love bubble baths but you're developing lots of UTIs, you may want to cut back on them. Sitting in soapy water can also reduce the amount of lactobacilli present.

Adjust Your Wiping

The way you wipe following going to the toilet can also increase your risk of a UTI. Wiping back to front means you risk introducing bacteria such as E. coli to your urethra. In contrast, wiping front to back means you're pushing E. coli away. If you're new to wiping correctly, it may take a little while before adjusting your technique has a positive effect on your health.

Change Your Birth Control

Diaphragms and items such as menstrual cups can introduce bacteria to your urethra if you're not careful. If you're set on using them, try increasing your attempts to keep them hygienic before making a change. If that's not effective, you may need to try something else. Additionally, if you depend on spermicidal agents as a form of birth control you may be reducing the amount of good bacteria present. If you do change your birth control method, try keeping a diary to make sure doing so is having the desired effect.

Focus on Hydration

If you're leading a hectic lifestyle, then it's easy to forget to drink water. When you're not drinking enough water you may not pass urine often enough to eliminate the bacteria that cause UTIs. Try setting reminders on your phone to stop and take a drink. Alongside reducing your UTI risk, your overall health should benefit.

Speak With a Professional

Regular UTIs could be a sign that an underlying condition is affecting your health. By attending a women's health clinic, you can benefit from a consultation that identifies causative factors and find a resolution with your medical team. Your doctor may also prescribe emergency or prophylactic medication so that you're less likely to develop an infection that affects you.

For more information on women's healthcare, contact a professional near you.