If you think of urinary tract infections (UTIs) as an exclusive women’s condition, think again. The fact is about 3% of men worldwide and 12% of American males also get UTIs.
Unfortunately, most men don’t have UTIs on their radar and have no clue about the symptoms and risks, which can leave them dealing with complications. We take male UTIs seriously, so our team of experienced specialists at Gulf Coast Urology, located in Houston and Nassau Bay, Texas, is focusing this month’s blog post on how men get UTIs and what they can do to prevent and treat them.
What is a UTI?
You get a UTI when bacteria creep into your system through your urinary tract, which consists of your bladder, kidneys, ureters, and urethra.
Women get more UTIs than men mainly because their urethras are shorter and closer to their rectum, increasing the likelihood of bacteria transfer.
UTIs in young men are rare but become more common with age. And when men develop a UTI, it’s often related to an enlarged prostate, kidney stones, or other urinary tract obstructions.
Male UTI Symptoms
Men and women experience the same UTI symptoms. Both sexes experience:
- Pain or burning during urination
- Frequent or urgent need to urinate
- Inability to fully empty the bladder
- Blood in the urine
- Pain in the lower abdomen or back
However, men with UTIs often have no symptoms or miss the signs. If you notice any of these symptoms, come see us at Gulf Coast Urology as soon as possible. If you don’t get treatment for your UTI, you may face more significant complications, such as kidney damage or sepsis.
Causes and Risks of Male UTIs
Again, male UTIs are pretty rare, but several factors can increase your risk, including:
- Enlarged prostate
- Kidney stones
- Urinary tract obstructions
- Catheter use
- Not being circumcised
- Not drinking enough fluids
- A narrow urethra
Some sexual practices, such as anal intercourse, can also increase your risk of a UTI.
Preventing Male UTIs
The good news is that you can take proactive steps to avoid a UTI. For example, drinking plenty of water to flush out bacteria and urinate often, especially after sexual activity.
Good hygiene can reduce your risk, so remember to wipe from front to back after using the toilet and avoid irritants like bubble baths or harsh soaps.
Using protection during sexual activity ensures bacteria won’t enter your urethra. And since women with UTIs can infect their male partners, protection is crucial.
Male UTI Treatments
If you develop a UTI, we can prescribe antibiotics to eliminate the infection. It's essential to take the full course of antibiotics as prescribed to eradicate the infection completely. We may also recommend other treatments or further testing if we suspect an underlying condition, such as an enlarged prostate.
Our goal is to relieve your symptoms and prevent the infection from spreading to your upper urinary tract, kidneys, and prostate.
Don’t ignore the signs of a UTI — call or click to book an appointment and get started on treatment to clear the infection and save your organs.