Prevention of UTI

The following measures can reduce the risk for bladder infections and other UTIs:

  • Avoid products that may irritate the urethra (e.g., bubble bath, scented feminine products).
  • Cleanse the genital area before sexual intercourse.
  • Change soiled diapers in infants and toddlers promptly.
  • Drink plenty of water to remove bacteria from the urinary tract.
  • Do not routinely resist the urge to urinate.
  • Take showers instead of baths.
  • Urinate after sexual intercourse.
  • Women and girls should wipe from front to back after voiding to prevent contaminating the urethra with bacteria from the anal area.
  • Stop smoking (nicotine irritates the bladder).

Publication Review By: Daniel Khouri, M.D., Stanley J. Swierzewski, III, M.D.

Published: 10 Jun 1998

Last Modified: 18 Nov 2011