Honeymoon cystitis: 5 facts you must know

5 Crucial Facts About Honeymoon Cystitis. Don’t fool yourself!

Honeymoon Cystitis and Honeymoon Disease are names that could mean at least three different clinical diagnoses.  Here is what you need to know about so-called “Honeymoon Cystitis”:

#1 Honeymoon Cystitis: Symptoms

First of all, “cystitis” means inflammation of a bladder. In most cases, it is caused by a urinary tract infection (UTI). However, in some cases, it could be a chronic inflammation of a bladder or hypersensitivity of a bladder that just decided to manifest itself at a wrong time (not that there is any better time for being sick).

Nonetheless,  if you are googling “honeymoon cystitis” after a week of hot sex with your honey, most likely it’s a UTI.

If this is a urinary tract infection, this is what you are experiencing now:

  • Burning with urination
  • Blood in your urine
  • Constant urge to urinate
  • Read how I used to experience UTI symptoms and compare to get a full picture.

If this is a chronic bladder inflammation aka Interstitial cystitis (in-ter-stish-uhl sĭ-stī’tĭs) or IC, then your symptoms would be somewhat different and most likely, once developed, are not going to get much worse with time. Here are the most common IC symptoms:

  • Recurring pelvic pain
  • Pressure or discomfort in the bladder and pelvic region
  • Urinary frequency (needing to go often)
  • Urinary urgency (feeling a strong need to go)

In any case, don’t wait and see your doctor. As you can see, “Honeymoon cystitis” is a folk name for a range of symptoms, but you can’t know for sure what caused the symptoms until you see a physician.

#2 Honeymoon Cystitis vs. Honeymoon Urethritis

However, if your symptoms are just some “scratchy” feeling in your urethra and perhaps a mild feeling of annoyance after you are done peeing, it could be just that your urethra is irritated.

The truth is, women’s genitals are constructed in a very unfortunate way: the clitoris is a way to close to the urethra. Therefore, if there is too much action (rubbing, touching etc..) it could irritate your urethra. An important difference is:

a) Are your symptoms getting worse with time, or

b) Is it just something that you felt right after sex for a few hours?

If your symptoms showed up after hours of rough sex and seem to be dissipating with every new “go” (especially if your urine is diluted with lots of water), then it could be just it – a mechanical irritation of a urethra.

However, if you start noticing that the scratchy feeling in your urethra increases and goes from “3 out of 10” on a pain scale to a full-blown “7, 8 or even 9 out of 10” kind of pain, then, most likely, you fell into a UTI trap aka “honeymoon cystitis”.

Other reasons for urethritis that is not going away after a night of rest could be more serious, such as STDs. Of course, monitor your condition and seek medical help if the symptoms persist.

#3 Causes of Honeymoon Cystitis

Judging by the name “honeymoon cystitis” one could guess that it is caused by sex. Yes, sex causes honeymoon cystitis aka “urinary tract infection” (or “UTI”).

At the same time, it doesn’t happen to everybody. So why your honeymoon was ruined by pain? There could be 25 different reasons why you are more predisposed to getting a honeymoon cystitis than a girl next door (using IUD is yet another reason).

In any case, there is a high chance that your UTI it is caused by your own bacteria that lives on your genitals. In 90% of the cases, it is E.coli bacteria that normally reside in your lower intestines and in favorable conditions migrate to your vagina.

If your vaginal flora is misbalanced, there is a higher chance that E.coli can establish a colony there and wait for another opportunity to get carried away towards your urethra and your bladder. And this is how “honeymoon cystitis” starts.

#4 Honeymoon Cystitis: Treatment and Remedies

If your “honeymoon cystitis” proves to be a UTI your doctor will prescribe you a course of antibiotics to cure it. Be smart about it and avoid Cipro. Check out the list of antibiotics that are better for you here.

Alternative treatment options (seek professional help if no improvement) for a UTI include using baking soda, D-Mannose, bearberry. Taking any of the above as soon as you noticed the first symptoms of “honeymoon cystitis” would help you to fight the bacteria.

  • Baking soda changes your urine pH and can help to flush the bacteria.
  • D-Mannose works well against a certain type of bacteria (E. coli).
  • Bearberry (Uva Ursi) is a popular supplement that has good antibacterial properties.

However, if this is a chronic bladder inflammation (aka Interstitial cystitis or IC) none of the above would work. What could make a big difference in your diet: what you eat and drink. IC diet normally eliminates wine, coffee, spices and other irritants, as well as includes various supplements to heal your bladder lining.

It is crucial that you do not self-treat for over two days. Moreover, if you ever had any issues with your urinary tract & kidneys, or you have any other chronic problems, don’t hesitate a second and just go straight for antibiotics, don’t self-treat at all.

#5 Honeymoon Cystitis: Prevention

The best prevention for honeymoon cystitis is good hygiene and healthy vaginal flora. However, if you have been struggling with frequent honeymoon cystitis, make sure to read my 8 Holistic Strategies To Prevent UTI Naturally.

  1. To support a healthy vaginal flora that helps you to fight off the bacteria use this probiotic. I use this brand because it travels well (shelf stable) and comes in a small package that makes it easier to take it along on a trip.
  2. But of course, hydrate (add lemon to your water) and pee after sex to flush out any unwelcome bacteria before they crawl up your urethra and reach your bladder.
  3. Also, start taking D-Mannose prior to departing for your honeymoon or planning a weekend getaway with your partner if you know that sex triggers your UTIs.

As with anything, UTIs are easier to prevent, than to treat. Share this post with your friend who just fell in love or got married and save their honeymoon from a pesky “honeymoon cystitis” 🙂

How Sex Causes UTI



5 thoughts on “5 Crucial Facts About Honeymoon Cystitis. Don’t fool yourself!”

  1. Hi,

    Ive discovered my underlying problem (as you recommend as Step 1 in your holistics article) – it’s not having great vaginal flora set up. You talked about baking soda to help the balance but what about organic ACV, apple cider vinegar? I was thinking of taking ACV baths every day to try and 1) get rid of any bacteria around my privates and anus (2) rebalance my pH.

    Any experience with that?


  2. So glad I found your site! I’m 37 and only ever had one bout of cystitis in my mid 20s which was quickly cured. 6 weeks ago I had to take my first antibiotics in 10 years for a skin infection, cleared fine. The following weekend was spent splendidly with boyfriend of about 4 months (nothing unconventional!) – and right on cue on Monday I developed some kind of urinary issue. No blood/pain/smell but constant needing to go and ticklish discomfort. After a couple of days it didn’t clear so spoke to Dr and prescribed Macrobid which cleared it fast (took that over another weekend with boyf and no issue after that one). Have been on hols on my own for a few weeks, no issues. And…keen welcome home weekend from boyf – day after (yesterday) I started with the needing a wee immediately after having one, mild burn, very uncomfortable tickling type sensation in bladder when weeing, although oddly I could tolerate an hour on the train to work if I tried to ignore it and slept ok! Dehydration from a long 2 day flight may not have helped also. Fortunately yet no pain/blood etc.

    I am beyond keen to nip this in the bud and do wonder if the antibiotics for the skin infection are responsible and have upset vaginal flora – as I had never had this issue before with the same partner doing the same things! Just had my first 1500mg dose of d-mannose and ordered some female focused probiotics, seeing if it will help before going back to dr. I’m in the UK so have tried to find reputable products similar to your recommendations. So hoping these two things do the trick…

    1. Hi Kathryn, here is another good post for you to read: why antibiotics did not clear all my symptoms and definitely ask your doctor to culture your urine next time before starting on antibiotics, especially if your symptoms are mild and you could wait 24 hours for the results. Best wishes,

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