Strong Ammonia Smell in Urine

Your urine can say a lot about your health. Healthy body will deliver urine that has no smell and is clear, while unhealthiness is reflected in urine having strong smell and odor. Furthermore, if a person’s urine smells like ammonia, it’s a definite sign that something is wrong with your body. Strong ammonia smell in urine can indicate kidney damage or liver disease. If the urine exhibits a strong color, or if there is redness, rash, itching, burning sensations, fever, chills or vaginal discharge in addition to ammonia smell, it’s high time you must go visit your doctor.

Cause of Ammonia smelling urine in Women and Men

  1. High-protein diet: eating too much protein rich food causes smelly urine because excessive protein food means excessive nitrogen in the body resulting into increased amount of ammonia being released in urine.
  2. Not drinking enough water makes urine concentrated and causes strong ammonia smell in urine, along with foul odor and dark color.
  3. Holding Urine for Too Long.Holding urine longer concentrates it, increasing ammonia smell.
  4. Sexually Transmitted Disease.STDs are responsible for foul smelling urine.
  5. Body’s incapability to use glucose properly increases blood glucose level. The excess glucose is converted into ketones by the kidney for elimination being responsible for strong ammonia smell in urine.
  6. Kidney Problems.Malfunctioning of kidney leads to building up of wastes that gives urine a distinctive ammonia smell.
  7. Metabolic Disorders. Metabolic disorders under regular treatment leads to strong ammonia smells in urine. Taking proper medications as advised can lessen it.

Some more causes for ammonia smelling urine in Women

Ammonia smelling urine is more prevalent in women than in men. Severity of this and that can have serious consequences especially during pregnancy. Some causes of ammonia smell in urine exclusive to women are as follows:

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There are some other causes of the ammonia smell in urine that can be unique to women:

  1. Menopause – It  causes several changes to occur in a woman’s body leading to loss of helpful vaginal flora. This increases chances of infections in the woman’s urinary tract also leading to ammonia smell in urine.
  2. Bacterial Infection.Bacterial infections like urinary tract infection, kidney infection or bladder infection causes concentrated ammonia smell in urine.
  3. Not Drinking Enough Fluids during Pregnancy.Dehydration alone causes ammonia smelling urine and when Dehydration occurs during pregnancy, it becomes a serious problem, having much more impact leaving the fetus dehydrated.
  4. Medication and Supplements Effects during Pregnancy.Certain medicines result in ammonia smelling urine especially during pregnancy, when mother-to be takes several nutritional supplements. The smell is due to calcium, iron, and various other vitamins. Fortunately, this is one cause of ammonia smelling urine that is not considered harmful, and it persists only for a small duration.


  1. Drink more fluids to help your body stay hydrated at all times.
  2. Keep a tab on the kind of food you are consuming. Is it too rich in protein? Change the diet for few days and if the smell persists or disappears.
  3. Keep a check on the medicines, vitamins and nutritional supplements you take, if they cause strong ammonia smell in your urine, stop taking them or go for alternate medicines if they are important.


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