Do Bubble Baths Cause UTI’s?

45682893Dr. Herzog answers a Family Savvy reader who wants to know if bubble baths can lead to urinary tract infections.


Dr. Jo,

I’ve recently begun taking bubble baths in the evenings to relax. Several weeks after starting my nightly ritual, I developed a urinary tract infection. I’ve heard that bubble baths can cause UTI’s. Is this true? I am loving my bubble baths but certainly not enough to risk getting painful infections.


Dear Bubble Bather,

Bubble baths have often been blamed for urinary tract infections, especially in little girls. I do not believe that bubble baths directly cause urinary tract infections. However, bubbles contain chemicals and fragrances that might cause irritation in those that are sensitive or allergic to them. This causes inflammation and possible burning and itching. The inflamed area is now probably more prone to invasion of bacteria (especially in little girls that are scratching down there with dirty hands).

In addition to this, you might hold your urine in and not use the bathroom if it burns when you urinate. This too might make you more prone to infection. If you are prone to urethral irritation and UTI’s, you would be better off skipping the bubble baths.

Hope this helps,

Dr. Jo

Note from Jamie: For more helpful tips, read 10 Doctor-Recommended Tips For Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) Prevention

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