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Why Does My Bladder Hurt After Sex?

If you feel burning when you pee after sex it is not necessarily a sign of a sexually transmitted infection (STI). The painful sensation may also be caused by irritation of the skin or the tube that carries urine out of the body, the urethra.

Some experts recommend peeing as soon as possible after sex, to help flush bacteria from the urethra. However, this is not always possible for many people.

Bladder Pain Syndrome

Bladder pain syndrome, also called interstitial cystitis, is a chronic bladder health issue that causes bladder pressure and bladder pain. It affects more women than men. The symptoms of IC/BPS can be mild to severe and come and go. They can interfere with a person’s daily activities and relationships. They can also cause depression.

The exact cause of IC/BPS isn’t known. It may be due to a defect in the bladder lining that allows irritating substances into the bladder or something in the urine that damages the bladder wall. Over time, the bladder lining can become scarred and stiff. There’s also a possibility that the nerves of the bladder and other parts of the body, such as those in the hips and abdomen, can become sensitive to pressure and pain.

A doctor will perform a physical exam and do a urine test to check for bladder infections and other problems. Your doctor will ask questions about your symptoms and how they have changed over time.

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A doctor can treat your bladder pain with medicines, such as amitriptyline or pentosan polysulfate. They can put medicines into your bladder through a tube (bladder instillations). They can also use treatments that send electrical impulses to the nerves that go to and from the bladder. They can also recommend pelvic floor exercises or other techniques that relax the muscles in your lower belly, groin and buttocks.

Stress Urinary Incontinence

Urinary incontinence can be a very frustrating condition. It can make you feel self-conscious and embarrassed, especially when it happens during sexual intercourse. It is also a common reason for bladder pain after sex, as sex puts additional pressure on the pelvic area. Fortunately, urinary incontinence does not stop people from having sex, but it may lead to urine leaks and increased frequency of leaks during sex.

Mild stress urinary incontinence (SUI) causes your bladder to leak when there is pressure on it, such as during exercise, laughing, coughing or sneezing. Severe stress incontinence makes you prone to leak urine during sexual intercourse or any activity that puts pressure on the bladder, including heavy lifting. This is because of a weak pelvic floor and urethral sphincter.

Some people who suffer from SUI are also prone to urge urinary incontinence, which occurs when the bladder is overfull and you have an urgent need to pee. Having both SUI and urge incontinence is known as mixed urinary incontinence.

There are several treatments for urinary incontinence, including medication and lifestyle changes. You can try to minimize your urinary incontinence by avoiding caffeine, staying hydrated and exercising. You can also undergo a surgical procedure called a sling surgery, which uses a mesh that supports the urethra. This procedure can be performed vaginally and is a permanent fix for urinary incontinence.

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Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs)

A urinary tract infection — or UTI — is an infection in any part of the body’s urinary system. The system includes 2 kidneys and a pair of tubes called ureters, which connect the kidneys to your bladder. The bladder holds urine until you’re ready to empty it, then urine leaves the body through a tube called the urethra.

The lining of the bladder and urethra become irritated with a UTI, which can cause pain and a burning sensation when you pee. You may also feel a strong urge to urinate, even though you haven’t had any liquid in your bladder. A UTI can also make your lower abdomen, pelvic area, and back hurt.

While anyone can get a UTI, women and people with typically female genitals have a higher risk of getting them. That’s because the movements of sexual intercourse help move bacteria up from the rectum into the bladder. Bacteria from the rectum cause up to 90% of cystitis (say: sis-TIE-tis), which is the most common form of a UTI.

UTIs are usually easy to treat with antibiotics. But if you have a history of them, your health care provider may want to do other tests to find out why they keep happening. For example, they might look for other health problems that can cause them, such as diabetes or an abnormal urinary system.

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Inflammation of the Bladder

When you need to urinate, nerve signals in your bladder tell the muscles in the walls of your bladder to squeeze (or contract). The muscles then push urine through the tube called the urethra. The urethra is lined with smooth muscle that helps protect it from rough surfaces like the inside of your bladder. When you have sex, the movements can cause friction and irritation on the urethra. This can make it hard for the urethra to expel bacteria from your body when you need to pee. This can lead to an infection of your bladder called cystitis.

If you have cystitis, your symptoms might include pain or a burning sensation when you pee; a feeling that you need to pee more often and sooner than usual; and a urine sample that looks cloudy or smells strange. Your doctor may treat this condition with anti-inflammatory medicines, fluids and bladder retraining. If your symptoms do not improve, your doctor may recommend other treatments like a pelvic floor physiotherapist or surgery to create an alternative way for pee to leave your body.

During sex, the man’s penile thrusting can rub against the back wall of the bladder through the front wall of the vagina and irritate it. This can cause a urinary tract infection called honeymoon cystitis. This condition is more common in women than in men because the urethra in the front of the vagina is shorter.