How can I prevent a urine odor if I have urinary incontinence?

Bladder and urinary tract infections can also cause odor, therefore it is important to rule out infection if you notice odor with urinary incontinence. Women with incontinence tend to drink less liquid, causing their urine to become concentrated, which can cause a strong odor.Drinking six to eight glasses of water daily will dilute your urine and reduce or eliminate odor. Coffee and some foods, such as asparagus, can give urine a particular odor. Cranberry juice can increase the acidity of your urine, which will naturally reduce its odor. Products such as Derifil and Nullo, which are available at drug stores, can neutralize the smell of urine. Sometimes taking vitamin C will have the same effect, however vitamin C can interact with other drugs so it is important to check with your provider before trying this. Note, however, that substituting citrus fruit or juice for tablets will not have the same effect and can actually cause irritation to the bladder and worsening incontinence and odor.

An unpleasant urine smell due to urinary incontinence can interfere with your work and social activities. But simple changes in your normal routine can prevent or minimize odors.

If you don't drink much fluid and your urine has a strong odor because it is too concentrated, drinking more water may help. But don't go overboard, or you might increase urinary frequency and leakage. Acidic urine tends to have less odor, so you can take extra ascorbic acid (vitamin C) or cranberry juice to lower your urine's pH. Certain foods, such as asparagus, may add odor to the urine. A strong odor to the urine may also be a sign of urinary tract infection.

Urine collection devices can be cleaned with vinegar and water, and you can add vinegar or baking soda to your wash water to remove a urine smell from clothing. Vinegar is much better at eliminating odors than products that attempt to cover odors with heavy fragrances.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.