Pregnancy brings about a number of changes in a woman’s body which includes the likelihood of urinary tract infections (UTIs). Here is a short explanation of the symptoms and how to deal it with it. 

Dr. Sriprada Vinekar, Senior Consultant Obstetrician and Gynaecologist, Cloudnine Group of Hospitals, Bengaluru (Malleshwaram), explained to HerZindagi what UTI is and how it can be problematic for pregnant women. 

What is UTI?

Urinary tract infections can affect the ureters, kidneys, urethra and also bladder. This infection is common, and many tend to experience it during pregnancy as well. However, if it is left untreated, it can be a huge health risk to a pregnant woman and the fetus.

Pregnant women are at increased risk for UTIs. Most of the time it can be from week 6 to weeks 22 to 24, 90 per cent of pregnant women develop ureteral dilatation, which remains until the baby is delivered. During the pregnancy, the uterus expands which puts pressure on the bladder and the ureters. The ureters carry urine to the bladder and the urine is less acidic and has more proteins, sugars, and hormones during pregnancy. This increases the risk of a UTI. Fortunately, this can be easily treated. 

Symptoms of UTI in pregnancy

Since everybody is different, in case you feel any discomfort, you must consult the doctor. 

Asymptomatic Urinary

preg uti

Without treatment, 20 to 35 % Pregnant Women with asymptomatic bacteriuria tend to get symptomatic urinary tract infection which can lead to complications. All pregnant women must be screened for it at the first prenatal visit.

However, the most common symptoms are as follows.

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  • An urgent need to pass urine.
  • Burning sensation.
  • Cramps in your lower back. 
  • Urine has an odour or has blood.
  • If it increases, it can spread to the kidneys and this can cause following symptoms
  • Nausea
  • Fever, chills
  • Vomiting
  • Pain in the upper back

Complications Associated With UTI

  • Low birth weight in babies.
  • Kidney problems.
  • Sepsis
  • Preterm labour which can lead to premature birth.
  • Hypertension.
  • Anemia

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How To Avoid Getting A UTI

cranberry uti

  • 8 glasses of water every day. 
  • Cranberry juice
  • Pee before and after intercourse.
  • Wipe yourself from front to back in the loo
  • Wear cotton lingerie
  • Wear loose clothes.
  • Urinate often
  • Avoid spicy food, alcohol, citrus juices, caffeinated drinks. 
  • Avoid soaping the genital area
  • Routine pregnancy checks

Stay tuned to HerZindagi for more on pregnancy.