Urinary tract infections plague not just adults but are also just as prevalent in children as well. Newborns to toddlers, can affect children from all age brackets.
UTIs occur when bacteria enter the renal system, from the area around the rectum and the genitals, or less commonly, through the bloodstream. The infection can be present in any part of the system; kidneys, bladder, or the ureter.
This infection is harder to detect in younger children and infants and thus can possibly go unnoticed. In order to get better, antibiotics may need to be administered; the infection will not get better on its own.
Furthermore, a lack of timely treatment can cause the infection to spread to other parts of the body and can also damage the kidneys. Thus, watch out for the following symptoms of UTIs in children, and consult Best urologist in Karachi for medical help.
Signs in babies
Due to the infection in the body, a baby might experience fever. Moreover, a baby might cry a lot from abdominal pain. UTIs also cause urine color to change, and the odor is rather strong and foul as well.
Urinary tract infection can also cause the baby to have weight gaining and growth issues. Fighting the infection might leave them exhausted. Pain also makes them irritable.
Similarly, UTC can also result in bouts of diarrhea or vomiting in children. Another sign of UTI is jaundice. Babies in general, will not seem to be thriving because of the UTI.
Sign in older children
In older children, UTIs can manifest slightly differently. Children might request to be taken to the bathroom more frequently but might not pee as much, despite the feeling of urgency that came with their request.
Due to the burning sensation and pain that accompanies urination, children may also cry as they pee. Urine color is also changed; cloudy urine with strong odor is characteristic of UTIs. In certain cases, urine might also be tinged with red, as there might be blood in the urine.
Moreover, potty-trained children may also get into the habit of bedwetting. It also causes children to experience pain in the pelvic region. At times, children also complain about backache in UTIs.
Infection can also cause fever alongside chills. It can also cause nausea and vomiting in children. Fatigue is another one of the signs of UTIs. As many of the children have to get up during the night to pee, their sleep is also gravely affected.
What are the risk factors of UTIs?
Being a female is a risk factor for UTI, due to the anatomical structure of the body, they are more prone to UTIs throughout their life. As the urethra is much shorter in females and closer to the anus, it is easier for the bacteria to gain entry into the body.
Boys younger than 1 year and who are uncircumcised are also more likely to have UTIs. Similarly, any malformations in the urinary tract, like blockage along the ureter, can make the child more vulnerable to urinary tract infections.
Children who have vesicoureteral reflux (VUR) are more likely to have UTIs. In this condition, there is an abnormal backflow of the urine from the bladder to the ureters, to the kidneys.
Hygiene practices, rather lack, therefore, also increase the risk of UTIs. If the genitals are not cleaned properly after a visit to the loo, bacteria can harbor in the region, and cause infection.
Genetics also increases the risk for UTIs; children with a strong family history of UTIs are also very likely to have them as well.
How are UTIs treated?
Treatment of UTIs is a fairly simple process. Children have to be administered antibiotics, as per their doctor’s prescription. The test may also be conducted once the antibiotics’ course is complete to ensure that all the bacteria are ridden off, to prevent the infection from making a comeback.
In cases where the child is under extreme pain during urination, a doctor may also prescribe numbing cream to help with pain management.
If the child has a more severe case of UTI, they might be admitted to the hospital for intravenous administration of antibiotics. Children who have dehydration due to this infection are also mostly taken to the hospital, so that fluid intake via IV can be ensured.
Children who have vesicoureteral reflux, VUR, may either be given medicine or can also be prescribed surgery. Whereas most children end up outgrowing this state, many can develop kidney damage or failure later in life because of it, requiring treatment from the Best urologist in Islamabad.