Urinary tract infections are bacterial infections of the urinary tract. Pregnant women are more susceptible to these infections from their sixth to their 24th gestate week. They are different than the ordinary UTI’s because of the missed signs, and if we do not treat the UTI immediately it can affect pregnancy.
Why the UTI’s are more often during pregnancy?
This type of infections occur very often during pregnancy because changes of your urinary tract . Namely, the uterus is located on the top of the bladder and with the increase size of the uterus during this time; it increases the pressure on the bladder as well. This can block the drainage of urine from the bladder and possibly frequent infections that can affect pregnancy.
Signs and symptoms
An infection may cause one or more of the following symptoms:
- Pain, burning, discomfort during urination
- Frequent urination
- Blood in the urine
- Pain in the lower part of the abdomen
- Strong urine smell
- Back pain, chills, nausea, vomiting,
- You are waking up to urinate
- Pain in the lower abdomen
- Big pressure of the bladder
Impact on embryo
We have all these signs that are telling us that we have an infection. If we miss this signalization, it may lead to a kidney infection and have a major impact to our embryo growth. It can affect our bodies by causing low birth weight or preterm delivery. If you treat the UTI promptly, it will not harm your baby.
An early diagnosis is always welcomed
It is well known that pregnant women have increased need for urination. The location of the uterus is on the top of the bladder, and as the uterus grows larger, the bladder is under constant pressure. This constant pressure of the bladder may lead to frequent urination especially during her 34th gestate week of pregnancy. This natural frequent urination is the exact point where pregnant women miss one of their first sings for UIT. If the woman is between her sixth and 24th gestate week, there is not as much frequent urination because the uterus is not big enough to make this pressure. Women think that frequent urination is a natural phenomenon throughout pregnancy. A simple urinalysis and urine culture can detect this problem throughout your pregnant time. It is therefore advisable to visit your gynecologist once a month during pregnancy; they are required to make routine urinary control in every pregnant woman.
A urinalysis and urine culture is the most reliable method for detection of this type of infection during pregnancy. They can be safely treated with antibiotics which will not affect pregnancy or harm your baby. It is a 3-7 day course of antibiotics.
Call your doctor if you have chills, fever, lower stomach pains, nausea, contractions, during the therapy, of if you have a burning feeling when you urinate after taking the medicine for three days.
Prevention from UTI’s does not mean that you should apply now during this time and stop after you gave birth. This means that you should take this prevention list as an example and avoid everything that can cause this discomforts. The main prevention of this should consist the following:
- Drink 6-8 glasses of water each day
- Avoid canned foods, soft drinks, caffeine, and alcohol
- Take vitamin C, beta-carotene, zinc (minimum 30mg per day)
- Regular care
- Avoid strong soaps for intimate hygiene, antiseptic creams, douches, feminine hygiene sprays; it is recommendable to use only hot water for intimate hygiene
- Use only cotton underwear
- Shower and urinate before and after intercourse
- Do not wear tight-fitting pants