Small children catch infections and fall ill fairly frequently. Most of the time it is the daily common cold, cough or flu. Sometimes, it might be something more serious but easily treatable like a UTI (Urinary Tract Infection). In this article, we will learn about UTI in kids.
Almost all UTIs are caused by bacteria that enter the opening of the urethra (the tube that drains urine from the bladder out of the body) and move upward to the urinary bladder and sometimes the kidneys. UTIs are more common in girls than boys as a girl’s urethra is smaller and closer to the anus than a boy’s. UTIs afflict about 8% of girls vs only about 2% of boys.
Also read: Urinary Tract Infection: Causes & Symptoms
UTI in children is caused when any part of the Urinary Tract or the kidneys get infected by bacteria. This infection can happen when:
In children below the age of 3, the symptoms of UTI may not be apparent. A very young child might also not be able to explain what he is feeling so the doctors might not be able to accurately diagnose a UTI. In such cases, a Urine test can accurately confirm if the child has UTI. Young children who have UTI could also show these symptoms:
Older children who are able to communicate might also show the below symptoms:
Also read: Urinary Tract Infection: A Helpful Guide
UTIs are not infections which will go away with time or home remedies. They require treatment with antibiotics and are fairly easily treatable. If you suspect your child has UTI, immediately consult a doctor and complete the course of antibiotics as recommended by the doctor. Do not stop the medication mid-way if you think the infection has cleared.
Hospitalization may be required in case the UTI is more serious and kidney infection is suspected. This might happen when:
Other than antibiotics, you could follow these remedies to make your child more comfortable and speed up the healing process.
UTIs are fairly easy to treat if diagnosed early. If left untreated, UTI can cause kidney damage. Practicing healthy hygiene and toilet habits can help ensure that your child is healthy and does not go through the agony of a UTI.
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