How to Prevent UTI in Children

Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are common in children. Caregivers can help prevent UTIs in children by teaching good hygiene, maintaining healthy hydration and by being aware your child's daily bathroom habits. Here's how to prevent UTI in children.


  1. Image titled Prevent UTI in Children Step 1
    Be aware of reactions to antibiotic medications, which may cause UTI.
    • Recent treatment of a respiratory or similar infection with amoxicillin or cephalosporin may cause UTI in children, and you may need to try a different prescription for respiratory or other infection in the future.
  2. Image titled Prevent UTI in Children Step 2
    Avoid constipation, which research has shown may be related to UTIs in children.
    • Keep children well hydrated throughout the day with at least 6 to 8 glasses of water daily. Also include several servings of fruits and vegetables daily to avoid constipation.
  3. Image titled Prevent UTI in Children Step 3
    Have your child drink throughout the day to avoid becoming dehydrated, which can lead to UTI.
    • Avoid caffeine, which can irritate the bladder, leaving room for bacteria growth.
  4. Image titled Prevent UTI in Children Step 4
    Teach your child good hygiene to avoid the spread of bacteria that cause UTIs.
    • Teach young girls to wipe from front to back after a bowel movement to avoid spreading bacteria.
    • Teach an uncircumcised boy to wash the foreskin on his penis regularly to avoid bacteria buildup that could lead to infection.
    • Avoid bubble baths or strong soaps when bathing that may cause irritation, which may give bacteria a place to grow.
    • Engage in frequent diaper changes if you have an infant, in order to avoid urine or feces buildup, which could give bacteria a place to grow.
  5. Image titled Prevent UTI in Children Step 5
    Dress your child in loose fitting clothing to prevent rubbing or irritation that could lead to infection.
  6. Image titled Prevent UTI in Children Step 6
    Teach your child to urinate frequently, rather than "holding it in" to prevent bacteria growth.
    • Urine in the bladder may give bacteria a good place to grow.
  7. Image titled Prevent UTI in Children Step 7
    Follow your pediatrician's treatment plan if your child does develop a UTI, in order to remove the infection and prevent recurring UTIs.


  • Most UTIs are caused by bacteria that infects the urinary tract, which is made up of the kidneys, ureters, bladder and urethra.
  • Symptoms should improve within 2 to 3 days of starting antibiotics.
  • Your doctor may ask about symptoms and take a urine sample to identify the bacteria causing the infection.
  • Treatment is usually an oral antibiotic administered at home over the course of about a week. If your child has severe pain with urination, a secondary medication may be prescribed, which numbs the urinary tract lining.
  • UTI symptoms include burning or pain when urinating, frequent urge to urinate with only small amounts of urine coming out, fever, diarrhea, vomiting, irritability, stomach pain, back pain, strong smelling urine or bloody urine.


  • UTIs are highly treatable, but if left untreated, UTIs can lead to kidney damage, so early diagnosis is important.
  • An abnormality in the structure or function of the urinary tract may cause frequent UTIs. If an abnormality is suspected, your doctor may order further testing to see if more extensive treatment, such as surgery, may be necessary to prevent further recurrence.

Article Info

Categories: Childhood Health