What It Means When Your Pee Burns After Having Sex

Visiting the bathroom after sex is not uncommon. In fact, many of us might head in there to relieve ourselves one last time before we drift off to sleep. This is when the burning sensation while urinating could throw you off. Did I injure myself? Do I have a urinary tract infection (UTI)? 

Both of those possibilities could be true but before we jump to infections, let's look at some of the less serious meanings for why your pee burns after sex. Not having enough lubrication, rough sex, or allergic reactions to condoms, lubricants, or sex toys could be why you feel sore after sex (via Healthline). Any one of those things could've irritated (and in the case of rough sex or lack of lubrication, even injured) your private parts. Scrapes, cuts, or microtears from excessive force or dryness can be painful. Some people might even be allergic to certain proteins in their partner's semen. 

Latex allergies can cause skin sensitivity too, which can result in a burning sensation while peeing after sex. Condoms with spermicides and lubricants that are heavily scented could cause irritation too (per Cleveland Clinic). Relieving the symptoms of external injuries or irritants might mean paying attention to how long the sensation lasts. According to board-certified OB-GYN Dr. Shieva Ghofrany (via PopSugar), "'mechanical' irritation like dryness or sensitivity" should go away in a few minutes when you first pee after sex. "However, if it lasts longer, like more than a few hours, then it may be urethritis, or a UTI and you should contact your doctor to have a urinalysis and STI test done."

Other more serious reasons for burning pee after sex

Everything from a UTI, sexually transmitted infection (STI), bacterial or viral infection in your urethra (urethritis), interstitial cystitis (inflamed bladder wall), vaginal yeast infection, bacterial vaginosis (a condition that disrupts the normal balance of bacteria in the vagina), atrophic vaginitis (thinning, drying, and inflammation of vagina walls owing to a lack of estrogen), and vulvodynia (chronic pain in your private parts) can cause a burning sensation while peeing after sex. 

Injuries related to childbirth and cervical issues can also be to blame when it comes to women, whereas for men, it could mean prostatitis (inflammation of the prostate gland) or a yeast infection (via Medical News Today). 

When it comes to these causes, it's important to keep an eye out for other symptoms too. For example, with a UTI, you may experience pelvic pain and cloudy and foul-smelling urine, and with urethritis, there could be a frequent urge to pee and itching in your private parts. A burning sensation while peeing sometimes might be the only symptom of an STI like chlamydia, herpes, or trichomoniasis (via Healthline), but other signs include blisters, itching, and swelling in the affected area. Prostatitis could present with fevers and chills and bloody or cloudy urine and yeast infections can include symptoms like gray discharge, swelling in your private parts, and a rash. 

How to handle the burning sensation

If you felt a burning sensation when you peed just one time after sex and have a hunch that something external could've caused it, try including more foreplay in your intimate time or looking at the condoms, lubricants, and other sex toys you use. Assess the ingredients and see if you might be allergic to any of them. Opt for fragrance-free non-irritant alternatives. Some of the reasons you may have painful urination after sex can be resolved with a little bit of detective work you yourself can engage in. 

According to Dr. Shieva Ghofrany, even an infection (when mild) could be cured simply by drinking lots of water to flush out the bacteria, per PopSugar. But UTIs would generally require a visit to the doctor and antibiotics. The key is in differentiating whether it's something you can handle at home or if you need the help of a professional. 

One way to know is to see how long the burning sensation lasts. Once after sex might not be worrisome but if it persists for more than two days, it's time to see a doctor. "If the burning or urgency goes away after a day or two, it was probably irritation. But if the symptoms last more than two days after you had sex, contact your doctor," explained OB-GYN Dr. Salena Zanotti (via Cleveland Clinic).