Can a UTI be transmitted through sex?

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While a UTI (urinary tract infection) is not transmissible in the same way as an STD (because it can’t be passed from one person to another), women can get a UTI from sexual intercourse.

If you’re one of the unlucky people who always seems to get a UTI after sex, this is the article for you, babe! I myself know how desperately uncomfortable a urinary tract infection is. For three days or so, all you can think about is *down there* because it burns when you pee and you feel like you need to pee all the time! 

You can even have infections which keep you up all night and you’re left wondering whether the sex was even worth it (it wasn’t). 

pin for can thrush case a uti

What Causes A UTI After Sex?

women in bed looking at each other

A UTI is caused by the bacteria e-coli entering the urethra (the tiny hole you pee out of). When you have sex, bacteria can get rubbed into the urerthra, either from your partner’s hand or their genitals. 

Often, there’s a bit of a delay between having sex and the infection showing up. If you have sex in the evening and go straight to sleep, you might find you start feeling uncomfortable the next day or even the next evening. This is because the bacteria has had a chance to grow and multiply inside you and now you’re experiencing pain and discomfort. 

You’ll be experiencing some seriously painful symptoms including: 

  • Burning / stinging sensation when urinating
  • Need to urinate more often
  • Feeling that your bladder isn’t empty after you’ve finished peeing
  • Dark urine with a strong smell
  • Blood in your urine
  • Pelvic pain

Although men can get a UTI too, they are more common in women because the urethra is shorter. 

Another problem with having a shorter urethra is that the infection is more likely to travel to your bladder, causing cystitis, or to your kidneys which can cause serious problems. 

How Can You Stop Getting A UTI After Sex?

woman peeing

By practising basic sexual hygiene, you can avoid getting a urinary tract infection after sex. This includes:

  • Peeing straight after intercourse (that means a big glass of water right before)
  • Keeping any adult toys clean
  • Ensuring hands and genitalia are clean before beginning 
  • Wiping from front to back

Can Anal Sex Cause A UTI?

One sure-fire way to get a UTI is through ‘double dipping’. If you’re having penetrative anal sex and then going straight into penetrative vaginal sex, you’re esentially rubbing poo partciles into your urerthra. 

So make sure you change that condom or get him to *properly* wash in between. 

What To Do If You Have A UTI

I’m a big believer in getting rid of a UTI using home remedies. You can flush that out by drinking lots of water, taking some anti-inflammatories and avoiding foods which ‘feed’ the bacteria (I’m talking about sugar, cut it out!). 

However, if you’re experiencing any signs of cystitis, like lower pelvic pain or blood in your urine, you need to see a doctor right away. The same goes for if you’re experiencing any back pain, as this could indicate that the bacteria has travelled to your kidneys. 

You’re likely to be prescribed some antibiotics to deal with the infection. You should be aware that, if you’re prone to thrush, antibiotics kill all the good bacteria (lactobacillus) in your vagina and can cause a nasty bout. 

The Take Away

couple in bed together who are cuddling

If you’re finding that you’re getting UTIs constantly, it’s time to start working out what’s causing it. Sure, it might be that you’re just really prone to them (some people are!), but often they’re caused by not peeing right after intercourse. 

It’s not the sexiest way to end an intimate hour with someone, but it will ensure that you spend the next day reminiscing about the great sex rather than regretting it!

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