What is a UTI or Urinary Tract Infection?
Roughly 8% of girls and about 2% of boys will be diagnosed with a UTI before they turn 5. This means parents need to know what it is, how to identify it, and when to treat it. A Urinary Tract Infection is exactly what it sounds like, an infection of the urinary tract. A UTI is actually difficult to identify in young children, so parents need to know the symptoms. It is important to get treated because untreated it can turn into a kidney infection. The good news is that when treated kids usually are back to their normal self within a few days.
Parents need to know how to identify the symptoms of this infection. Here are the key things to look for.
- Pain in the lower belly, back, or side
- An urge to pee more often
- Wetting the bed when your child is otherwise potty trained
- Burning or pain while urinating
- Nausea or Vomiting
If you notice that your child has symptoms of a UTI, make an appointment with the pediatrician or KidsStreet Urgent care to get it treated. The doctor will usually take a urine sample and test it for bacteria.
After a urine sample is tested if there is a presence of bacteria, your child will need treatment to kill the bacteria. Antibiotics are a very commonly used medication that kills bacteria. These can be taken orally and are usually taken for about 3-10 days. Your child will need to take the full prescription dosage even if they start feeling better before they have finished.
Most UTIs will clear up within 3-5 days after treatment. Some kids will have symptoms for a few weeks, but if they aren’t feeling any better within 3 days of treatment, call your doctor. They may order another test to see what could be causing the symptoms to persist or worsen.