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A 27-year-old member asked:

Can a bubble bath give my child a uti?

4 doctor answers22 doctors weighed in
Dr. Scott J. Wolfson
Pediatrics 22 years experience
No: Bubble baths do not usually cause a urinary tract infection but rather, especially in girls, cause an irritation in the urethra (the last part of the body in the travels of urine) which can burn and feel like a uti.
Dr. George Klauber
Specializes in Pediatric Urology
I respectfully disagree. Bubble-bath may initially cause chemical irritation of the urethra which in turn damages urethral lining and permits bacteria to reach the bladder which is only an inch away from the urethral opening. I have seen little girls with urinalysis & culture proven UTIs within 48 hours of using bubble-bath. Also girls who had recurrent UTIs which ceased after stopping bubble-bath
Mar 20, 2012
Dr. Josephine Ruiz-healy
Pediatrics 39 years experience
Yes: Bubble baths have been linked to UTIs as the harsh chemicals can irritate the urethra so much that kids end up holding their urine, as it is painful to urinate. This causes bacterial overgrowth in stagnant urine and there starts the UTI. It is not recommended to give kids bubble baths if they are under 3 or 4 years old.
Dr. Mark Diamond
Pediatrics 46 years experience
Remeber that things like bubble bath are the most common cause of painful urination in young kids
Oct 12, 2011
Dr. James Ferguson
Pediatrics 46 years experience
Yes: As baby girls change into todlers their outer labia begins to decrease in relative size and may no longer remain closed during bathing. As they sit in a tub, their labia may open and expose vulnerable tissue to irritants in soaps, shampoos, or bubble bath beads.A soap film left overnight may trigger itching & discharge, all leading to pain with voids and possably germs pushed into the bladder.
Dr. George Klauber
Specializes in Pediatric Urology
Yes: Bubble-bath is quite a well-known cause of utis in lttle girls. Chemicals in bubble-bath irritate urinary opening, enter the most distal urethra and can even get all way up into the bladder. Chemical irritation damages urethral & bladder lining making it easier for bacteria to attach & penetrate creating the initial focus for a uti. Bacteria , once in the urinary tract multiply. Do not use bb.
Dr. Martin Raff
Dr. Martin Raff commented
Infectious Disease 56 years experience
Fascinating subject. Lectured to our Fellows in ID on UTI recently and forgot to mention this although was aware. Thanks.
Mar 21, 2012

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Last updated Nov 28, 2017

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