5 Self-Catheterization Mistakes and What You Can Do to Live Pain Free

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Apprehension when learning to use a catheter is normal, pain is not. Learn to live pain free with your catheter and try free samples of Patient Care Medical’s top recommendations provided in this post.

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clean cath male catheter1. Choosing the Wrong Catheter

When drainage eyelets – the small holes near the catheter’s insertion tip – are rough around the edges, you will experience pain with insertion due to friction in the urethra. To prevent this from happening, choose a polished eyelet’s smooth edges to ensure comfortable insertion like the SpeediCath Compact Set for women and the Clean-Cath Intermittent Catheter for men.

If you have difficulty inserting your catheter fully you may have an enlarged prostate or urethral strictures. Coude tip catheters‘ curved tips are able to circumvent blockages or obstacles for effortless insertion. We recommend our SpeediCath Flex Coude by Coloplast for maximum comfort.

2. Lack of Lubrication


Choosing straight intermittent catheters will require you to apply external lubricant at every insertion. This will decrease any discomfort experienced and ensure proper catheter positioning. To eliminate this necessary step, we recommend choosing a pre-lubricated or hydrophilic catheter like the Cure Male Hydrophilic Catheter and the Bard Magic3 GO Hydrophilic Catheter for women.

3. Choosing Latex

It is important to choose latex-free catheters if you show signs of a latex allergy such as itching, irritation or hives. If you experience any of these symptoms, choose latex free products. Patient Care Medical carries latex-free catheters provided by brands like Coloplast, Coviden, and Bard.

4. Not Catheterizing Frequently Enough

Maintaining the health of the urinary tract is critical with catheter use. When the urine from the bladder is not completely expelled, the risk for UTI development from bacterial growth is greatly increased. You must catheterize anywhere from 4-6 times a day to ensure the health of your urinary tract.

5. Tension and Improper Positioning

Nerves from self-catheterization will increase muscular tension, making insertion more difficult. Proper technique will evade this particular issue. 

Take a few deep breaths and allow your body to relax before you begin the process. For easiest insertion, it is recommended that women position themselves standing with one leg on the toilet. If you find sitting is easier, you may do this as well. 

Upon inserting the catheter, make sure you do so slowly to avoid any pain. If you experience discomfort, stop for a few seconds and try again. Men may experience discomfort when the device has been inserted around 6 inches where the urethral sphincter muscles are located. Take a few deep breaths and calmly increase pressure until the device is fully inserted.


  • Choose a smooth or coude tip catheter.
  • Apply lubricant. 
  • Self-catheterize 4-6 times a day.
  • Find a comfortable position


  • Choose a rough-eyelet catheter. 
  • Choose latex catheter products if you have an allergy. 
  • Insert the catheter partially, or too quickly.

Looking for the right catheter that meets your needs? Our friendly team of customer care specialists will guide you through the process of finding the best catheter solution for you. Give us a call at 888‑726‑5066 or fill out the form below to receive a free sample catheter kit today!