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Why Is My Girlfriend Getting UTIs?

Why Is My Girlfriend Getting UTIs?

Is your hot hook up, longtime lover or situationship struck down with a UTI? Take it from us, urinary tract infections are more painful than realising two minutes into a four hour coach ride that your airpods have died (truly hellish). Whilst there are lots of potential causes for UTIs, there are a few things you can do that might just help solve the problem... 

What is a UTI?

If you’re lucky enough never to have experienced a urinary tract infection, settle in. UTIs are bacterial infections caused by bacteria, often from the anus, or dirty hands/skin, gets into the urethra and then travels to the bladder or other parts of the urinary tract. UTIs aren’t to be messed with - symptoms recognised by the NHS include: 

  • pain or a burning sensation when peeing (dysuria)
  • needing to pee more often than usual
  • needing to pee more often than usual during the night (nocturia)
  • needing to pee suddenly or more urgently than usual
  • pee that looks cloudy
  • a high temperature, or feeling hot and shivery
  • a very low temperature below 36C


What causes a UTI?

Spend any time at all on r/TwoXChromosomes and you’ll come across a post from a distressed woman who is experiencing UTIs, which started when she started a new relationship. Whether you’re packing a penis or otherwise, if the person you’re making the moves on has a vagina and you’re planning on P-in-V action, keep these things in mind:

  1. WASH YOUR DAMN HANDS. You wouldn’t sit down to a delicious sandwich with filthy mitts that have been holding onto the same tube railing as thousands of other filthy mitts, would you? (If that’s a yes, you need to rethink your antibacterial hand gel policy). The same applies to getting handsy. Vaginas have a delicate pH balance, and generally don’t get along well with germs or grot. Definitely give those hands a good wash before embarking on foreplay or sex or any kind, especially if fingering is on the menu…
  2. WASH YOUR JUNK. Not only is it polite to keep things fresh if you’re expecting hands/mouth/genital contact, but it can also avoid transferring germs into the urethra. We’ll say it again: vaginal tissue is more sensitive than your dad trying out a daring new hairdo.   
  3. Enforce a rigid pre and post-sex-peeing rule. We bang about this so often that our partners have a Pavlovian response and remind us to urinate almost instantly after the action is over - but the same goes for you, too. Yes, it can be tempting to lie there in the post-coital haze, but in the interests of avoiding UTIs, hop to the bathroom speedily. Rough sex, lots of sex or even just plain old missionary: it doesn’t matter what you’re up to - leap up and pee, pee, pee to wash bacteria out the urethra. 
  4. Swap to natural condoms. If you’re grabbing any old bog standard johnnies off the shelf, or bulk-buying random brands on Amazon, you might not realise that they actually contain irritants which can cause irritation or lead to urinary tract infections. Painful, constant peeing and even a kidney infection. Not. Fun. They’re also not great if you have a penis, either.
  5. Check the ingredients list on your lube. Many mainstream lubricant brands use harsh chemicals, tingling gels, spermicides or flavours which can cause irritation, yeast infections or worse.
  6. Is a little backdoor action on the table? Whether you’re using a toy or penis, never move from anal sex straight to vaginal penetration, as this transfers bacteria to the vagina. Make sure to swap to a new condom, or put bum fun last on the sexy times menu.

How can I help my girlfriend/partner with a UTI?

  1. Make sure they’re drinking plenty of water, and avoiding caffeinated, alcoholic and soft drinks as these can irritate the bladder.
  2. Bring them a heating pad, as this can help ease back or stomach pain.
  3. Important: speak to your GP urgently (or call 111) if your partner has the below symptoms as this could mean they have a kidney infection, which needs to be treated swiftly, or it can cause sepsis:
  • has a very high temperature, or feel hot and shivery 
  • has a low temperature below 36°C
  • is confused or drowsy 
  • has pain in the lower tummy or in the back, just under the ribs
  • can see blood in their pee


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