Can a Sex Toy Cause a Urinary Tract Infection?

Can a Sex Toy Cause a Urinary Tract Infection?


7 minute read

Can you get an infection from a sex toy?

Yes, If you’re not careful, you can get a urinary tract infection (UTI) from a sex toy.

Urinary tract infections certainly aren't fun. Common symptoms include burning or stinging sensations, itching, and unpleasant pressure. Getting a UTI often involves a hospital visit too.

While a quick round of antibiotics will clear up most UTIs, you want to limit your chances of infection if you can.

If you use sex toys, cleanliness is critical. You don't want to give bacteria a chance to grow. So while you have little to worry about if you properly care for your toys, you should know how to minimize your risks.

We asked physicians and gynecologists for their tips on how to prevent UTI infections from sex toys.

They also recommended what to do if you think you’ve got an infection from a sex toy.

Here’s what they had to say.

Choose a Sex Toy Made of Non-Porous Materials

Certain materials are porous, which means they have microscopic holes in them. These tiny holes trap moisture and allow UTI-causing bacteria to grow.

Most sex toy manufacturers stick with body-safe substances that don't have these little holes.

Some of the most common non-porous materials include silicone, ABS plastic, metal, and glass. Look for sex toys made of these materials.

Avoid using products made with cheap vinyl, latex, and jelly. These include the most realistic dildos and cocks. If you choose to use toys made from these materials, cover them with condoms or dental dams.

Top Non-Porous Sex Toys to Prevent a UTI:

Magic Wand Rechargeable HV-270 Personal Massager

Magic Wand Rechargeable HV-270 Personal Massager

$129.95

Magic Wand Rechargeable Vibrator Say hello to the Magic Wand Rechargeable Vibrator, your new best friend in the bedroom! 🎉🔥 For over 30 years, this powerhouse has been delivering mind-blowing, toe-curling vibrations that will leave you breathless. And now, with… Read More

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Gold Rose 'Lola' Rechargeable Twisty Bullet Vibrator

Gold Rose 'Lola' Rechargeable Twisty Bullet Vibrator

$18.99

Shopping for an amazing & twisty new bullet vibe? Look no further than this Super-Charged Lola Twisty Bullet Vibrator from Maia Toys. 10 function super charged vibrating bullet with a twisty design for maximum sensations.     The Lola Vibrator… Read More

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LELO SONA 2 Cruise Sonic Clitoral Massager - Black

LELO SONA 2 Cruise Sonic Clitoral Massager - Black

$149.00

LELO SONA 2 Cruise Sona 2 Cruise is a pleasure toy that combines all the best features of Lelo's technology, innovation, and pleasure-making. This is a sonic massager that stimulates 75% more of the user's clitoris and not only on… Read More

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Avant D2 6" Non-Porous Silicone Dildo - Purple Rain

Avant D2 6

$60.99

Modern, stylish, and beautiful - meet Avant. Crafted with care and with pleasure in mind, enjoy the natural, hand-sculpted forms. They are harness-compatible and feature a deep, strong suction cup. Avant D2 boasts elegant curves and a pleasingly broad head.… Read More

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Chrystalino Lollypop Glass Wand - Blue

Chrystalino Lollypop Glass Wand - Blue

$32.99

Chrystalino Lollypop The unique shape of this beautifully handcrafted wand has been designed for both vaginal as well as anal play! Place the wand under a stream of lukewarm or cold water and the premium borosilicate material will heat up… Read More

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Use an Appropriate Lubricant for Your Toy

You need to use the right sex lube with the right sex toy.

Some lubricants can damage sex toys. For example, they can remove protective coatings or create little pores in non-porous materials. This can give bacteria a chance to grow even on non-porous or waterproof sex toys.

Remember these easy lube tips:

  • Never use silicone lubricants with silicone sex toys. The silicone will quickly break down into a gummy mess.
  • Oil-based lubes can damage many toys, and they're not safe for vaginal use.
  • Water-based lubricants are the safest option. They won't damage any toys designed for penetration.

Your natural body fluids are primarily made from water, so water-based lube is the way to go if you’re not sure which lube to use with your sex toy.

If you love the silky feel of silicone or oil-based lube, you can learn more about how to use them safely with your sex toys in our complete guide to lube.

Top Water-Based Lube for Sex Toys:

Sliquid H2O Water-Based Lubricant

Sliquid H2O Water-Based Lubricant

$10.99

Sliquid H2O: The Premier Water-Based Lube Looking for a lubricant that's long-lasting and safe for your body? Look no further than Sliquid H2O Water-Based Lubricant. This adult lubricant is formulated with purified water and plant cellulose to provide a natural,… Read More

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Pink Water - Water-Based Personal Lubricant

Pink Water - Water-Based Personal Lubricant

$9.99

PINK Water: A Long-Lasting lube that never gets sticky PINK Water is our high-quality purified H2O-Based Lube that feels amazingly like your own natural moisture. Condomanics LOVE Pink Water Lube because it's... Unscented Safe for all Toys Paraben-Free Flavor-Free, Glycerin Free… Read More

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Gun Oil "Toy" Water-Based Gel Lubricant | 3.3oz

Gun Oil

$10.99

Do you love toy play? If you answered yes then the new Gun Oil Toy water-based lubricant may be just what you are looking for! Gun Oil H2O Gel Toy is the highest quality water-based lubricant you can buy. Toy… Read More

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Wet Original Gel Water-Based Lubricant

Wet Original Gel Water-Based Lubricant

$5.99

Wet Original Gel Personal Lubricant If you’re looking for a little something to whet your appetite while you get down and dirty, Wet Original is the perfect slick pick! This long-lasting lube is thick, smooth, and - because it is… Read More

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Boy Butter "H2O" Water-Based Lubricant

Boy Butter

$10.99

Boy, this butter sure is sexy! Boy Butter H2O from Boy Butter Products is a gentle concoction of natural ingredients, including shea butter, vitamin E, and aloe, that provides lubrication to the most intimate places without irritation.     Longer-lasting than the… Read More

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Be Careful with Anal Toys

By nature, your anal sex toys will attract bacteria. So, you need to sanitize them completely after every use (more on that in the next tip).

Don't let your genitals contact an anal toy until it's been sanitized, or you're practically asking for a urinary tract infection.

If you’re using sex toys with a partner, they may try to penetrate you in different places with the same toy. This is a big no-no if you want to avoid a nasty infection.

Likewise, you should never share anal toys without using latex condoms. But, again, your bacteria is very different from your partner's, so swapping toys can make your body go haywire.

This is also a good time to remember that latex condoms are not compatible with oil-based lubes.

The Best Anal Toys for Avoiding a UTI:

Gläs Triple Play 4" Beaded Glass Butt Plug Dildo

Gläs Triple Play 4

$24.99

Triple Play 4" Beaded The classic beaded butt plug in high-quality tempered glass. Features wide base for safe anal play. Fracture-resistant and hypoallergenic, this toy can be easily cleaned. Retains heat and cold for increased stimulation.     Compatible with… Read More

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B-Vibe Rimming Plug 2 Vibrating Butt Plug

B-Vibe Rimming Plug 2 Vibrating Butt Plug

$150.00

B-Vibe Rimming Plug 2 Vibrating Butt Plug Meet the first premium plug engineered to incorporate rotating beads for a rimming sensation at the entry of the bum- where the highest level of nerve endings is located. A powerful overall vibration… Read More

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Booty Call 'Booty Rocket' Vibrating Anal Stimulator

Booty Call 'Booty Rocket' Vibrating Anal Stimulator

$25.99

Booty Call 'Booty Rocket' Vibrating Silicone Anal Stimulator Enjoy endless pleasure with the Booty Call™ Booty Rocket™, a smooth probe complete with 10 massage settings. This is an advanced size probe, designed for full prostate stimulation and personalized pleasure. The… Read More

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Black Bunny Tail Anal Plug

Black Bunny Tail Anal Plug

$26.99

This black metal plug has a fuzzy black tail for animalistic role-playing. The stimulating ripples will excite as they are inserted one by one, with a tapered tip for comfort and ease of use. The compact size makes it perfect… Read More

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Curve Gossip Hearts n' Spurs Anal Beads - Violet

Curve Gossip Hearts n' Spurs Anal Beads - Violet

$9.99

Gossip Hearts n' Spurs These simple, classic anal beads are made of pure silicone for a silky smooth yet firm anal treat! The sturdy double ring gives you a perfect grip for quick removal, and the silk smooth silicone will… Read More

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Chrystalino Seed Glass Butt Plug - Blue

Chrystalino Seed Glass Butt Plug - Blue

$35.90

Chrystalino Seed The unique shape of this beautifully handcrafted butt plug has been designed for both anal and vaginal play! Place the wand under a stream of lukewarm or cold water and the premium borosilicate material will heat up or… Read More

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Sanitize Your Toy Properly

The best way to prevent getting a UTI from a sex toy is to clean, clean, clean. You need to sanitize your sex toy after every use thoroughly.

If you don’t store your sex toy in its proper home (see the next tip), you should also clean it before each use.

The experts strongly recommend using dedicated sex toy cleaners, as they're designed to gently clean adult products without causing damage.

They're very effective and easy to use, and they won't leave behind any unpleasant odors.

Depending on your toy's material, you may be able to sanitize it in your dishwasher or by bleaching or boiling it for several minutes.

Check your toy's cleaning instructions before trying any of the above.

When you're finished cleaning up, make sure that your toy is completely dry before you put it away. Water can attract bacteria, so wipe it down with a clean, lint-free towel.

Recommended Sex Toy Cleaners:

Wet Antibacterial Vibe Wash Toy Cleaner

Wet Antibacterial Vibe Wash Toy Cleaner

$7.99

#1 Selling Sex Toy Cleaner Yes, it's called 'Vibe Wash', but this quick and easy mist from Wet is a toy care staple perfect for any keeping vibrators, dildos, butt plugs, nipple clamps, strokes, and much more safe, squeaky clean,… Read More

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Sliquid Shine Organic Sex Toy Cleaner

Sliquid Shine Organic Sex Toy Cleaner

$11.99

Sliquid Shine Organic Toy Cleaner Sliquid Shine organic intimate toy cleaner is infused with body and nature-safe cleansing agents like tea tree oil and castor oil, which have natural anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties. This non-foaming toy cleaner does not contain… Read More

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Store in a Safe Place

Don't just throw your dildo in your sock drawer—store it properly.

You don't want your toys to mingle, and you certainly don't want them touching dirty laundry or other unsanitary things.

Keep your toys in their original storage bags, boxes, or cases. If you don’t have the original case, wrap your toy in a cloth or store it in a cloth bag.

Don’t seal it in a plastic bag—this helps bacteria grow.

Store your toys in a cool, dry place. If you haven't used a toy in a while, give it a quick clean before using it again.

Check carefully for cracks and deep scratches. If your toy is damaged, don't use it.

Think You’ve Got a UTI from a Sex Toy? Here’s What to Do...

If you feel an itchy, burning, or painful sensation down there and you’re not sexually active with a partner, you may have contracted a UTI from a sex toy.

Don’t panic. UTIs are not serious if you get treatment promptly.

Here’s what doctors recommend:

1. Visit an Emergency Room or schedule a visit with your doctor

It’s highly recommended to see a doctor if you think you have a UTI. Without treatment, the infection can spread to other parts of your body, causing serious and potentially life-threatening complications. A doctor will prescribe antibiotics, and you’ll be feeling better in a few days.

2. Drink Plenty of Water

Drinking a lot of water will help flush out bacteria causing the infection. It also makes it harder for the infection to spread. Try to drink about 6-8, 8 oz servings of water per day. Urinate as needed to keep the water flowing. Please don’t hold it in!

3. Inspect and Sanitize or Replace your Sex Toys

If your sex toy caused a UTI, you need to make sure it’s safe before using it again. First, give it a thorough inspection. Is the surface worn down? Does it have cracks, holes, or creases? Is it more than a couple of years old? If you answered yes to any of those questions, it’s time to replace your toy. If not, you probably need to clean it better.

Wrapping Up

When you take proper precautions, sex toys are fun and safe.

Your chances of contracting a UTI are low if you clean your toys after each use. But talk to your doctor soon if you think you have an infection.

You should always seek medical assistance if you have any of the symptoms of an infection. If left untreated, a UTI can become an emergency, so don't take any chances.

Check out our selection of Sex Toy Cleaners.

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