Aunt Vadge: I feel like I have a UTI if I don’t drink enough water

Hi Aunt Vadge,

So back in August I had sex with my now ex boyfriend for the first time ever and straight away I got a UTI because we weren’t careful. Anyways it took a long while but I drank a lot of water and didn’t have sex after that, so eventually my UTI went away, but a few weeks after, I felt like I had a UTI again, but it wasn’t as painful, and if I drank a glass of water it would straight away go away.

So now every time I don’t drink enough water in a day I feel like I have a UTI, and I just don’t understand why it keeps happening?? Also I haven’t had sex or any kind of sexual interaction since August.

Yours,
Uncomfortable
Age: 15
Country/Area: England

Hi there Uncomfortable,

Your urine stream keeps your urethra relatively clear of bacterial build-up and if you are really dehydrated, it can bring on a UTI that is quenched when you get some liquids through you. First things first, make sure you are drinking plenty of fluids.

It can be a confusing thing to make an effort to do (why not just drink when you are thirsty?) but we understand that thirst doesn’t really work in the intuitive way that hunger does. For a couple of weeks, figure out how to drink at least 1.5 litres of water or liquids per day – fill up a bottle, and just make sure it is down by your evening meal (otherwise it can keep you awake peeing during the night which is annoying). I realise it’s winter where you are now, so you can make these liquids hot drinks too – herbal tea (try peppermint, chamomile, other nice flavours). This is about six metric cups, which isn’t that much, but if you’re not used to drinking water (some people just hate it), it can seem a lot.

Additionally, it sounds a lot like you have a bit of a minor, hibernating infection in your urethra that never quite went away. There are a bunch of solutions on how to treat a UTI at home effectively, with my favourite being reflexology. It’s great because not only is it really effective (when you get the right spot for long enough), but it’s free. If you are prone to UTIs now, it’s likely you will need to take extra care your whole life, and get these strategies down pat now, so that when a UTI strikes you in the middle of the night on your backpacking trip to Australia, you can solve it yourself without antibiotics.

Check out the UTI page and let me know if any of it doesn’t make sense.

Warmest regards,
Aunt Vadge

 

Jessica Lloyd - Naturopathic Practitioner, BHSc(N)

Jessica Lloyd - Naturopathic Practitioner, BHSc(N)

Jessica is a degree-qualified naturopath (BHSc) specialising in vulvovaginal health and disease, based in Melbourne, Australia.

Jessica is the owner and lead naturopath of My Vagina, and is a member of the:

  • International Society for the Study of Vulvovaginal Disease (ISSVD)
  • International Society for the Study of Women's Sexual Health (ISSWSH)
  • National Vulvodynia Association (NVA) Australia
  • New Zealand Vulvovaginal Society (ANZVS)
  • Australian Traditional Medicine Society (ATMS)
Read more about Jessica and My Vagina's origin story.
Jessica Lloyd - Naturopathic Practitioner, BHSc(N)

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