Recent Blog Articles

Harvard Health Blog

Antibiotic-resistant urinary tract infections are on the rise

October 14, 2019


As a service to our readers, Harvard Health Publishing provides access to our library of archived content. Please note the date of last review or update on all articles.

No content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinician.


Lisa Bebell
October 25, 2019

Dear all,

Thank you for your thoughtful comments and questions. Antibacterial soaps are generally not recommended, especially in delicate areas such as the genital region. There are circumstances in which antibacterial soaps are good to use, but most of the time I recommend very gentle, non-perfumed soaps and minimal scrubbing. There are indeed healthy bacteria living on our bodies, and it is good to allow those communities to remain intact as much as possible!

– lisa bebell

October 20, 2019

This is so scary to me, I fear the Day they will stop working as we haven’t discovered New antibiotic for some time now. I do think we propably will find something different some day.
Anyway you usually don’t need any antibiotic to fight of a reglar urinary trac infection. For me it has helped to drink lot and sort of pee it out.
If it hits kidneys and your blood that’s where the danger is why we need the antibiotics to keep on working. And Doctorsneed to stop describing for virus infections.

Lisa Bebell
October 16, 2019

Dear Madge Bennett – very gentle cleansers are recommended for the genital area – your recommendations here seem sound. -lisa

keter Gideon
October 15, 2019

I have had similar problems too ,the infection is resistance

Madge Bennett
October 14, 2019

Care of skin on body , including genital area – years of experience negates use of liquid ‘soaps’ and detergents – especially anti-bacterial. Colloidal oatmeal in bath – and in shower equals cleanliness, — retaining appropriate acid mantle (no odors – plus, soothing to sensitive skin). Entire family has tendency to ‘eczematous’ skin – (sensitivitiy to nightshade flora, lactose, gluten ‘intolerance’ – but not “celiac,”), lactose. Ethnicity: – Celtic, basically northern European, light hair, blue-eyed, tall, muscular, active. Often sub-clincal hypothyroid.

Bryan Carrier
October 16, 2019

Is it better to not use anti-bacterial soaps? I’ve heard that using anti-bacterial soaps kill the beneficial or good bacteria that we need to thrive. I’m all about killing unwanted bacteria, but don’t want to kill beneficial bacteria.

Commenting has been closed for this post.

You might also be interested in…

Better Bladder and Bowel Control: Practical strategies for managing incontinence

Most people take bladder and bowel control for granted — until something goes wrong. An estimated 32 million Americans have incontinence, the unintended loss of urine or feces that is significant enough to make it difficult for them to maintain good hygiene and carry on ordinary social and work lives. The good news is that treatments are becoming more effective and less invasive. This Special Health Report, Better Bladder and Bowel Control, describes the causes of urinary and bowel incontinence, and treatments tailored to the specific cause.

Read More

Free Healthbeat Signup

Get the latest in health news delivered to your inbox!

Harvard Health Publishing Logo

Thanks for visiting. Don't miss your FREE gift.

The Best Diets for Cognitive Fitness, is yours absolutely FREE when you sign up to receive Health Alerts from Harvard Medical School

Sign up to get tips for living a healthy lifestyle, with ways to fight inflammation and improve cognitive health, plus the latest advances in preventative medicine, diet and exercise, pain relief, blood pressure and cholesterol management, and more.

Harvard Health Publishing Logo

Health Alerts from Harvard Medical School

Get helpful tips and guidance for everything from fighting inflammation to finding the best diets for weight loss...from exercises to build a stronger core to advice on treating cataracts. PLUS, the latest news on medical advances and breakthroughs from Harvard Medical School experts.

BONUS! Sign up now and
get a FREE copy of the
Best Diets for Cognitive Fitness

Harvard Health Publishing Logo

Stay on top of latest health news from Harvard Medical School.

Plus, get a FREE copy of the Best Diets for Cognitive Fitness.