UTI in Pregnancy

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  1. Dani Lasher, Childbirth Educator


    Okay, here we go with UTI and pregnancy. So I see this problem a lot, and I want to help women understand better why it occurs. So it hopefully helps them understand how they can stop it. I’m over two thirds of pregnant women develop something called glycosuria when they’re pregnant, and that means they’re excluding sugars in their urine. And this isn’t the same as like ketones or diabetes. It’s not that kind of concern. But those sugars really feed bacteria. And that’s one of the primary reasons that it’s so easy to get UTI while we’re pregnant. Um, combine that with the fact that almost all pregnant women have their ureters dilate. And those are the tubes that kind of connect your kidneys to your, your bladder. And they have to dilate because you have so much extra fluid in your pain more often. And, but the downside of that is that you’re producing much more urine that can get trapped in the bladder. So while that increase in urine is normal, and those ureters usually start dilating about six weeks until you deliver, it’s still an important thing to be aware of. And the trickiest part is that during pregnancy, most women will find it, they don’t have symptoms, they’re asymptomatic for UTI, so that burning when you urinate, and the frequency etc, you might not have any of that. And that’s where it gets risky. Because if you don’t have symptoms, then you don’t necessarily know you have an infection. And that’s one of the things they’re screening you for regular prenatal checkups. But if you do find that you are getting a lot of UTI, you can buy Whoa, UTI test strips now at most any pharmacy and keep them on hand and just test yourself regularly. So um, so yeah, the problem with not having symptoms is we generally need pain. Pain is a really powerful tool in our arsenal, we know the stove is hot when we go near it, so we don’t get closer, right. When we have an infection, the body responds with pain and inflammation, fever, etc. And they have a purpose for fighting infection. But we also, it also lets us know that something’s amiss. And when you have this asymptomatic urinary tract infection in pregnancy, there’s an inherent risk because it can quickly become a kidney infection quickly as relative, but um, some very fast cases do developed and, and it seems like, even though most of them take several days, that risk is is serious, because kidney infection is very painful, but it can put you into preterm labor, you always almost find yourself on antibiotics in the hospital for a few days. Um, so I know it can be extremely painful if you know that flank pain. And that’s what I often tell women, one of the early signs you’ll find, and this can be for kidney infection UTI or kidney stones, kidney stones will produce a similar pain. But I just want to show you real quick I can back up here. So your flank, right is like this area on your back. You’ve got you’ve got on each side. And this is kind of behind where your kidneys are. And if you or anyone else, if you just take your fist and like tap on it, it’s going to feel very tender, inside and kind of like sore when you do that you might not feel anything otherwise. But if you’re just starting to develop trace of an infection in your kidneys, you’re generally going to have that kind of soreness inside because your kidneys are getting inflamed. It sounds horrific. I know but but it’s a sign and it’s a good good tool to use at home. So um, UTI typically form in pregnancy because one, the immune system is somewhat suppressed, but to that urine gets trapped inside as your uterus grows and expands, it puts a lot more pressure on the bladder and it can sort of pinch off parts of the bladder where urine can get trapped in these little pockets. So you think you’ve peed all the way. But there’s this little puddle of urine sitting in your bladder all day long, and that bacteria kind of festers internally. And so the UTI actually forms inside of you without you introducing anything externally we often think like it’s come from something external, but it’s not always that way and it’s less common in pregnancy. It’s usually that it’s internal. So then you have that bacteria kind of growing in your bladder and it’s going up to your kidneys and your your urethra and all had nothing to do with it. That does not mean you should not take precautions to avoid introducing bacteria internally. You should. you absolutely should. And there’s some great practices to follow. always wipe front to back. I’m so surprised how many women are not taught this. It’s how you should be cleaning your baby’s your daughters and teaching them to wipe themselves. back to front introduces fecal bacteria to the vaginal canal and urethra. One of the biggest causes of UTI is eco lie, which commonly comes from poop. So while it’s normal to have equiline your intestinal tract, you don’t want to spread it around the vagina. This also helps ward off contaminating the vaginal canal or urethra with Group B strep from the rectum where it where it normally lives and it doesn’t bother us front to back ladies is always safest. Number two is pun intended, is that I like to eat good quality fermented foods or take a good prior probiotic. If you need a good probiotic. I love the gut pro brand, it is pricey. But it lasts for like nine months like It’s you It’s so strong, you need like a little dash of it. That comes with these teeny tiny measuring spins are huge. Number three is always, always urinate and wipe off front to back after sex and clean off externally if need be. And number four is when you are urinating This is the big one I’m telling you, it’s a life changer. I’ve done it. When you’re paying, and you think you’re done. Which seems like never when you’re pregnant, I know. But when you think you’re done, then you need to just lean forward a little bit and lift up that baby belly, lift it up with your hands, and then just push a little bit more than you will usually find more comes out if you just can help that uterus move up a bit off the bladder and push a little more, make sure you’re getting all of the urine out every time and that is the best way those methods combined to ward off UTI and you know not have to even get in a position of dealing with whether or not you’re going to treat holistically or this and that. Um, real quick. Let me show you just what I’m talking about. I got this sweet little screenshot. So down here at the bottom, you’re gonna see here’s the bladder, right. And when you have her uterus here and an expanding baby on it, it’s going to start squishing that bladder and these little corners is where urine can get trapped. These yellow tubes are yours and let’s see how they go straight up to your kidneys. So it’s a good idea to not send your kidneys a basket full of bacteria. All right. All right. I hope this helps. I hope you’re all well.

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