What causes foamy urine and how to treat it?

Symptom Database

Have you ever noticed that your urine appears foamy? While it may be a cause for concern, it is essential to understand that foamy urine can have various causes, ranging from harmless to more serious conditions. In this article, we will explore the causes of foamy urine and discuss the available treatments. Whether you are an adult or a parent concerned about your child’s health, understanding foamy urine can help you take appropriate action.

Causes of Foamy Urine


One of the most common causes of foamy urine is proteinuria, which is the presence of excess protein in the urine. Normally, the kidneys filter waste products and excess fluid from the blood, while retaining essential proteins. However, when the kidneys are not functioning correctly, proteins can leak into the urine, resulting in foamy urine. Proteinuria can be a sign of kidney disease or other underlying health conditions.


Dehydration occurs when the body does not have enough fluids to function properly. When you are dehydrated, your urine becomes concentrated, leading to foamy urine. It is important to stay hydrated by drinking an adequate amount of water throughout the day to prevent dehydration and its associated symptoms.

Urinary Tract Infection (UTI)

A urinary tract infection is an infection that affects any part of the urinary system, including the kidneys, bladder, ureters, and urethra. UTIs can cause various symptoms, including foamy urine. If you suspect a UTI, it is crucial to seek medical attention for proper diagnosis and treatment.


Diabetes is a chronic condition that affects the body’s ability to regulate blood sugar levels. When diabetes is not properly managed, it can lead to kidney damage, resulting in proteinuria and foamy urine. If you have diabetes and notice foamy urine, it is important to consult with your healthcare provider to ensure your condition is well-controlled.

Treatment for Foamy Urine

Identify and Treat Underlying Conditions

If you are experiencing foamy urine, it is crucial to identify and treat any underlying conditions that may be causing it. This may involve visiting a healthcare professional who can perform tests to determine the cause of the foamy urine. Depending on the diagnosis, treatment options may include medication, lifestyle changes, or further medical interventions.

Stay Hydrated

As mentioned earlier, dehydration can contribute to foamy urine. To prevent dehydration, make sure to drink an adequate amount of water throughout the day. The recommended daily intake of water varies depending on factors such as age, sex, and activity level. However, a general guideline is to drink at least eight glasses (64 ounces) of water per day.

Manage Diabetes

If you have diabetes and are experiencing foamy urine, it is crucial to manage your condition effectively. This may involve monitoring your blood sugar levels, taking prescribed medications, following a balanced diet, and engaging in regular physical activity. By properly managing your diabetes, you can reduce the risk of kidney damage and associated symptoms.

Treat Urinary Tract Infections

If a urinary tract infection is causing foamy urine, it is important to seek medical treatment. UTIs are typically treated with antibiotics to eliminate the infection. It is essential to complete the full course of antibiotics as prescribed by your healthcare provider to ensure the infection is fully eradicated.

Foamy Urine in Adults vs. Children

Foamy urine can occur in both adults and children, but the causes may differ. In adults, foamy urine is often associated with underlying health conditions such as kidney disease, diabetes, or urinary tract infections. On the other hand, foamy urine in children is commonly caused by dehydration or urinary tract infections.

If you notice foamy urine in your child, it is important to encourage them to drink plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration. Additionally, if the foamy urine persists or is accompanied by other concerning symptoms, it is advisable to consult a pediatrician for further evaluation and guidance.


Foamy urine can be a cause for concern, but it is essential to understand the underlying causes and available treatments. Proteinuria, dehydration, urinary tract infections, and diabetes are some of the common causes of foamy urine. By identifying and treating the underlying conditions, staying hydrated, managing diabetes effectively, and seeking medical treatment for urinary tract infections, you can address the issue of foamy urine. If you or your child experience persistent foamy urine or are concerned about your health, it is always best to consult with a healthcare professional for proper diagnosis and guidance.

Haroon Rashid, MD
Rate author
Urgent Care Center of Arlington, VA
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