Hydration and UTI Prevention: The Importance of Drinking Enough Water


Drinking water and staying hydrated imparts numerous benefits including preventing urinary tract infections (UTIs). Women are more prone to UTIs than men due to a number of reasons. UTIs are treatable but preventing them is always better. 

Understanding Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs)

Urinary tract infections or UTIs are characterized by infections developing in any part of the urinary tract of both males and females. The urinary system consists of the kidneys, ureters, urethras and bladder. Most of the urinary tract infections occur in the lower urinary organs, that is, the bladder and the urethra. 

Although women are more vulnerable to UTIs than men, there are different UTI causes, and risk factors affecting urinary tract infection in both men and women. The most common UTI causes in women may include:

  • Infection in the bladder
  • Infection in the urethra

There are several risk factors in women which increase the risk of getting an UTI. Some of these risk factors may include:

  • Menopause
  • Certain types of birth control
  • Sexual activities
  • Urinary tract problems
  • Blockages in the urinary tract
  • Prolonged use of catheter
  • Suppressed immune system

Risk of UTIs in men can be due to the presence of bacteria in the urinary tract which may have entered through the urethra. There are many factors that may put men at risk of developing UTIs. Some of these risk factors may include:

  • A previous infection
  • Not drinking enough fluids
  • Fecal incontinence
  • Recent surgery in the kidneys or in the urinary tract
  • Diabetes
  • Being circumcised
  • Urinary tract blockages such as kidney stones
  • Long term use of urinary catheter

The Role of Hydration in UTI Prevention

Treatment of UTIs may be done using antibiotics to check the spread of the infection. The medications may be recommended for 10 to 14 days as deemed necessary by the doctor. However, the doctor may recommend drinking enough water and other fluids. Drinking an adequate amount of fluids may help to flush out bacteria from the urinary tract. Additionally, it is important to stay hydrated enough when put on Antibiotics. There are other benefits of drinking enough water when affected by UTIs. 

  • Reducing bladder inflammation: Drinking adequate water may help remove waste products from the body. In case of dehydration, the waste products may build up in the lining of the bladder. Drinking water may also help to prevent such buildup and flush out toxins from the body.
  • Flushing kidney stones: Kidney stones may lead to urinary tract infection. When dehydration occurs, the body may not be able to produce enough water to remove excess toxins, wastes and stones. These buildup may lead to formation of kidney stones. Drinking enough water may help prevent dehydration which may ultimately help in preventing kidney stones.
  • Prevent recurrent UTI: Drinking adequate amounts of water and other fluids may help flush out bacteria and other toxins from the urinary tract which may help in preventing further UTIs. 

Hydration Guidelines for UTI Prevention

To keep the urinary system as well as the entire body properly hydrated and to reap the benefits of drinking water and other fluids to the optimum level, it is important to learn about the ins and outs of proper hydration. The first step is to know the recommended amount of water to drink daily.

Amount of water intake required may vary from person to person depending upon several factors including underlying health conditions like diabetes. Thus, the generally accepted 8 glasses of water may not be enough for some or may be too much for others. Therefore, it is better to discuss the requirements with a doctor or a dietitian. 

Additionally, it is also important to take care of the intake of other fluids. Limiting the amount of alcohol intake may be recommended as it may be diuretic and expedite the dehydration process. Regular intake of other fluids of tea, coffee, health drinks, and juices may help supplement the amount of water taken throughout the day. 

It is also important to take care of the number of times a bathroom visit may be required and the colour of urine passed is also important to be noticed. A faint yellowish colour of urine may be considered healthy. If the urine appears to be red, bright pink or cola-coloured, it may be a sign of blood in the urine. As such, seeking prompt medical attention may be recommended.

Other Benefits of Proper Hydration

There are numerous other benefits of proper hydration in humans than just preventing UTIs. 

  • Replenishing saliva and mucous in the mouth
  • Enhances proper functioning of the kidneys and overall urinary health
  • Boosts digestive health and facilitates regular bowel movements
  • Boosts skin health and hydration of the skin preventing skin disorders and premature wrinkles
  • Hydration cushions the brain, spinal cord and other sensitive tissues
  • Water helps regulate body temperature
  • Helps flush body waste
  • Aids in weight loss

Additional UTI Prevention Strategies

A number of steps may be taken to prevent urinary tract infections in both men and women.

  • Maintaining good hygiene practices by washing everytime you bathe or take a shower, especially after using shared spaces like a swimming pool or a jacuzzi.
  • Urinating before and after sexual activity and drinking a glassful of water may also help flush out bacteria.
  • Wearing breathable underwear and avoiding irritants and products that may aggravate bacterial or other infection.
  • Wiping from front to back after urinating and never touching the front without washing hands with soap and water after excreting fecal matter. 
  • Changing methods of birth control as diaphragms, or unlubricated condoms may contribute to bacterial growth.

When to Seek Medical Attention

It is important to seek medical attention if UTI is recurrent and is causing severe symptoms or complications. Untreated UTI may spread to the upper urinary tract and reach the kidneys causing severe complications. 

Urinary tract infections (UTIs) symptoms that may be signs of complications may include:

  • Pain in the sides or back of the abdomen which doesn’t go away even after changing positions
  • Fever 
  • Chills
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • A burning sensation when urinating

If upper urinary tract infection is left untreated, it may lead to a condition known as sepsis. It may become a life threatening condition. Some of the symptoms of sepsis as a result of UTIs may include:

  • Fever and chills
  • Irregular or fast heart beat
  • Difficulty in breathing
  • Sudden changes in the body temperature
  • Changes in the mental state


Drinking ample amounts of water and other fluids is essential to prevent infections in the urinary tract along with imparting other benefits. It is always better to prevent such infections than treating them along with practicing personal hygiene in various ways. Preventing UTIs may help prevent complications from such infections. Increased hydration is widely advocated for preventing UTIs.

The best Urinary Tract Infection Treatment Doctors in Hyderabad at OMNI Hospital provides the best in class treatment and management services for a wide range of infections including urinary tract infections (UTIs). We offer a comprehensive range of healthcare services for all-round treatment of a wide range of ailments including UTIs in both women and men. Our diagnostic services provide accurate diagnosis of the type of urinary tract infection for recommending the appropriate methods of treatment and management of UTIs in our patients.