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5 Ways To Prevent UTIs

By DuPage Medical Group Urology

Do you seem to get frequent urinary tract infections? These are most commonly referred to as a UTI, and are the second most common type of infection that people suffer from, accounting for more than 8.3 million doctor visits in the US alone each year.  When a UTI occurs more than twice in six months, it is considered to be recurrent or frequent.

UTI Defined

A UTI is an infection of your urinary tract (body’s drainage system through your kidneys and bladder) which is most commonly caused by bacteria. Normally bacteria enters and is removed from your urinary tract very rapidly before symptoms arise, but other times the body’s natural defenses can’t overcome the bacteria which causes an infection. Most UTIs are not serious and are more of a nuisance; however some UTI infections can lead to serious problems if left untreated.

5 Ways to Prevent UTIs

  1. Stay well-hydrated by drinking plenty of water.
    • It is recommended that you drink 64 oz. of water each day. Drinking these fluids will increase the volume of your urine, which in turn helps flush bacteria away from your bladder and urethra and out of your system.
  2. Take frequent bathroom breaks.
    • Even if you are having a busy day, make sure you make those trips to the restroom. Holding in your urine gives bacteria a chance to make itself at home in your body.
  3. Urinate before and after sex.
    • If you are sexually active, make sure you urinate before and after intercourse to help flush lingering bacteria away from your urethra.
  4. Wipe from front to back after bowel movements.
    • Wiping front to back lessens the chance that bacteria can be spread to your urethra.
  5. Evaluate your birth control method.
    • Certain birth control methods, like diaphragms and spermicide can contribute to the development of UTIs in women. If you are using either of these, you might want to discuss other options with your provider.

If you try these tips and continue to get frequent UTIs, consult with your primary care physician to see if you need to see an urologist.

 

Topics and Subtopics: Bladder Health & Women's Health

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