Learning catheter basics — how to cath and what to cath with — can seem daunting, but at Medipply we’re here to help you navigate the process. Find out who we are and how we can help you save money on catheters and catheter supplies. In three easy steps, we can help you save on at-home catheter delivery.
The very basics:
It’s important to maintain good cathing hygiene to prevent UTIs and other complications. Here are the must-dos for keeping things clean.
Regular intermittent catheter users should practice excellent hygiene to combat infection and complications. Even with single use catheters, it’s important to practice good habits but it’s about more than just washing your hands. Read our tips to how to proactively keep things clean.
Wash Your Hands Well
You should wash your hands thoroughly using soap and water (or an antibacterial hand gel if water isn’t available) before and after inserting your catheter. Germs can be transferred into you bladder via your catheter, so it’s key to keep your hands as clean as possible.
Take care not to touch anything besides your catheter after you washed your hands—and only touch the body parts that are meant to be touched to perform catheterization.
Both men and women should keep the genital area as clean as possible, taking care to wipe from front to back. Opt for mild soap (or a pre-moistened cleansing towelette) and avoid strongly scented products, perfumes, bubble baths, and lotions. Dry the area with a clean pad or towel.
Men might notice a slight discharge around the catheter, which can be normal, but reach out to your doctor if you notice any signs of infection such as swelling, redness, pus, or pain.
Multiple studies have shown that single-use catheters lessens the risk of UTIs, but your specific needs may vary. One-time use catheters help minimize the potential for bacteria overgrowth in your bladder and complications such as urinary tract infections. A well lubricated catheter lessens the possibility of friction, and thereby the risk of infection. Your insurance should cover enough for single-use catheters, and we can help direct you to the right product that allows for you to best avoid infection and complications.
Good Hygiene on the Go
No matter where you are, stick to these routines. Be sure to have hand sanitizer or baby wipes with you, in case you are in a restroom that doesn’t have all you need for your routine. If you need to touch anything after you wash your hands (e.g. if you use a wheelchair, you may touch the door or the hand rims) it’s important to use hand-sanitizing gel or wash your hands again.
Even though using a single use intermittent catheter can reduce the likelihood of infections compared to indwelling catheters, it is essential to do all you can to prevent the spread of germs. These tips can help, but always follow your doctor’s guidelines to form your own catheter routines.
At Medipply, our mission is to make buying and using catheters easier. Find out how we make the process of purchasing catheters and supplies more transparent. In a few easy steps, we can help you purchase catheters with insurance, connect you with the providers you prefer, and streamline the process of getting the medical supplies you need. Have questions? Check out our list of frequently asked questions and learn about how Medipply can help.