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Take Steps to Avoid a UTI this Summer

By: Urology Care Foundation | Posted on: 13 Jul 2016

Take Steps to Avoid a UTI this Summer

Each year, urinary tract infections (UTIs) account for close to 10 million doctor visits. A UTI can occur when bacteria gets into your urine and travels up to your bladder. Women are four times more likely than men to get a UTI and the summer brings an increased risk to everyone for getting one.

Swimming pools can be a breeding ground for germs despite offering a much needed oasis in the heat. This is due to urine in the water, people not showering before swimming and low levels of chlorine. Talk to the pool staff about how the pool is cared for.

You can lower your chances of getting a UTI by changing out of wet bathing suits and sweaty clothes quickly. Germs tend to grow best in warm, moist places. The summer's heat and humidity can increase the risk for UTIs, so be sure to drink enough water.

Signs of a UTI may include:

  • Pain or burning when you urinate

  • Frequent urination

  • Pain in your back or side near the ribs

  • Pressure in your lower belly

  • Urine that is cloudy, bloody or has a strong odor

  • Fever or chills

And consider the following facts as you look to prevent UTIs:

  • Urinating after sex helps flush out bacteria that may have gotten into the urinary tract during intercourse.

  • Certain forms of birth control, such as spermicidal foam and diaphragms, can increase the risk in women. Talk to your health care provider about your options. 

  • Don't put off urinating when you need to and don't rush to finish. Holding in urine and not draining your bladder fully can increase your risk.

  • Wipe from front to back to keep bacteria around the anus from getting into the vagina or urethra.

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