There could be many reasons why women suffer from recurrent urinary tract infections, and therefore many ways how to prevent UTI. I’m going to address one of the reasons and provide you a solution. Hint: it’s about your hygiene routine after you go #2. A bit of a TMI topic today!
Most likely the cause of your UTIs is your own E. coli bacteria. For majority women, sex is the main trigger (learn more about how sex causes UTIs). And for most of us, hygiene is very important to prevent UTI.
Why wiping is not enough
First of all, I’m sure you are wiping “front to back”. This is just hygiene 101. However, I have news for you: this is not enough.
Have you ever seen an anus? Yours, your partner’s or even your dog’s? If you do not want to look, let me enlighten you.
The primary function of the anus is to provide an exit route for your feces. Basically, you poop through it. However, while you are not pooping, circular muscles around the anus help to keep it shut in a tight pout-like shape.
Unfortunately, your anus is “pouting” when you are wiping your ass.
You are walking around with a dirty anus
To explain why this is an issue here is visual for you. I will use my lips as an example 🙂
- First, I’m relaxing my lips and putting a lipstick on.
- Then, I’m pouting (muscles tighten). This is kind of how your anus looks once you are done pooping.
- Third, I try to remove lipstick with toilet paper.
- Fourth, I’m using a clean piece of paper to show you how much is left in the creases of the skin! No brainer, it is hard to remove the lipstick when it is hidden in between wrinkles, created by the contracted muscles.
Water to the rescue
Well, washing it with water. No, it doesn’t mean you have to jump into a shower every time you go #2. You can use a simple plastic pitcher, install a real bidet in your bathroom or get your toilet an upgrade with a bidet system.
Actually, it is not a novel idea. Before toilet paper was invented, washing your ass was a pretty popular way to get yourself clean. A bidet is mentioned in Italian literature as early as in 1710.
Bidets are a popular option to get yourself clean in many countries around the world and in several countries (such as Spain and Portugal) their installation is mandatory since 1975.
Why wash before sex to prevent UTI in women
With a bidet washing before and after sex is an easy way to prevent UTI in women. Obviously, you are reducing the number of bacteria sitting around your anus. Therefore, the chances that they will make their way to your vagina are reduced.
If you are regularly using a bidet after pooping, then jumping into a shower before sex has less importance, but it is still a good practice.
Why wash after sex
Your genitals do need a rinse after sex regardless of whether you are preventing UTI or just want to stay clean. When washing after sex pay attention to your urethra and all skin folds around the vagina.
On the go
I always carry wet wipes that could be used anytime to refresh and especially if I have to poop without access to my bidet (yes, I do really like to use water otherwise).
In the worst case scenario, you can always pour a little water on a paper towel and use this for the last phase of your clean up.
If you are interested to supercharge your cleaning routine, check out how to make your own tea tree oil wash here.