About half of all women will experience a urinary tract infection in their lifetime. Unfortunately, women are much more likely than men to experience a urinary tract infection. This is mostly due to anatomy. Women have a much shorter urinary tract which makes it easier for bacteria to travel to the bladder.
What is a Urinary Tract Infection (UTI)?
An infection can happen in different parts of your urinary tract:
Cystitis: An infection in the bladder. You might feel like you need to pee a lot, or it might hurt when you pee. You might also have lower belly pain and cloudy or bloody urine.
Pyelonephritis: An infection in the kidneys. This can cause fever, chills, nausea, vomiting, and pain in your upper back or side.
Urethritis: An Infection in the Urethra. This can cause a discharge and burning when you pee.
Since women are already four times more likely to have a UTI than men, summertime brings on even more risk as heat and humidity increase. The germs and bacteria that cause a UTI thrive in wet warm environments.
For this reason, women and even men should take extra care as summer approaches to avoid developing UTIs. For those who have experienced a UTI in the past, your chances of developing one again are higher. How can we be cautious this summer?
Preventing a UTI in Summer
Do Not Hold Your Urine
Holding in your urine could lead to increased exposure to bacteria. It can also inhibit the full release of this bacteria, causing an infection.
Wipe From Front To Back
Wiping from front to back when you use the bathroom will help prevent bacteria from transferring from the anal area to the urethra.
Avoid Tight Undergarments or Swimwear
Tight undergarments can lead to increased bacterial growth. Be sure to wash and dry your clothing and swimwear. Sitting in a wet swimsuit can also increase bacteria growth.
Urinate After Intercourse
Bacteria can enter your body as a result of intimacy. Urinating after intercourse can help flush this bacteria out.
Staying hydrated by drinking water can help dilute your urine and ensure you are using the bathroom frequently. This helps bacteria move through the urinary tract.
See a Urologist
Summer is the time when many women are at increased risk of developing a UTI. If you find yourself with symptoms of a UTI or are having persistent and ongoing infections, consult a Urologist near Dayton, Ohio. At Urology Specialist of Ohio, we can help guide you in the best ways to prevent and treat UTIs all year long.