The other day, I'd just finished masturbating when I noticed I really had to pee. The urge was stronger than usual — which is saying a lot for someone who already pees a lot. So, of course, I googled, "Why do I have to pee after I masturbate?" I was legitimately scared I was somehow damaging my bladder through masturbation! Several online forum users posing the same question told me I was not alone. Theories abounded, from "it might be that you ejaculated into your bladder!" to "Your body has no idea if you had sex with another or yourself so it is sort of its way of cleaning out the tubes." Were any of these accurate? I decided to consult a few doctors.
"Feeling like you have to pee after you masturbate, or even orgasm, is very par for the course," Astroglide's resident OB/GYN Dr. Angela Jones tells Bustle. "You are definitely NOT alone. If you are feeling this, it likely means either your masturbation or sex game is on point."
Why is it, though, that sex (whether with yourself or another person) might inspire the urge to run from the bedroom to the bathroom? The explanation is surprisingly simple and intuitive.
Why It Happens
With all the blood flowing down to your pelvic area, there's more pushing against your bladder. "What happens when you masturbate? Orgasm? How about your uterus, vagina, etc. gets engorged!" says Dr. Angela. "This leads to hypersensitivity of the tissue/organs in question. Know where the bladder is in relation to the uterus/vagina? Pretty close proximity. This is a case of what affects one will most certainly affect the other; i.e., if the uterus contracts/vagina contracts, guess what else is likely to contract? Your bladder."
OB/GYN Dr. Aimee Eyvazzadeh offered up the same explanation. "The urge to pee is simply because the bladder sits in front of the uterus," she tells Bustle. "The uterus is a muscle and the muscle contracts during an orgasm and that makes the bladder area more sensitive too. So, if you have urine in your bladder, you may have more of an urge than you normally would after an orgasm."
What You Should Do About It
You might be wondering: If this urge to pee is not actually related to your bladder being full, do you not have to empty your bladder? Actually, the post-masturbation urge to pee is convenient, because you should be emptying your bladder after any sort of sexual stimulation, even if that's not the reason you feel the urge.
Sex creates opportunities for bacteria to enter your urethra, and peeing helps get everything out before it has the opportunity to travel upward. "Voiding post sex is always a good idea to help flush out those bacteria that may be near or around your urethra from sex," says Dr. Angela. "This post sex void will help keep pathogens that could cause a UTI at bay."
And that's not just for partnered sex, either. "Masturbating, especially with a dildo or vibrator, could also potentially cause the same issues, but fingers and dildos are a lot cleaner than penises," says Dr. Eyvazzadeh. "The urethra of a woman is very short. That means there’s a short distance for bacteria to travel before they get into the bladder, and you are then dealing with a bladder infection and if untreated, [that] can turn into a kidney infection."
Other ways to prevent UTIs include using a condom or female condom, and showering after sex, though these aren't substitutes for peeing. You should also make sure to wash your sex toys so that they don't introduce any infection-causing bacteria into your body.