Most women will have a urinary tract infection at least once in their lives, but these infections are particularly common during pregnancy. Although most UTIs are mild and they will usually go away by themselves, it is best to see a doctor for urine infection treatment if you are pregnant.
Why Are UTIs More Common in Pregnancy?
One of the many changes that happens to your body during pregnancy is that the levels of the female hormone progesterone are higher. Progesterone plays a vital role during pregnancy, but it also makes the muscles surrounding the tubes that carry urine to your bladder more relaxed. The flow of urine slows down, which gives bacteria more time to grow and cause problems. You are therefore more likely to develop a urine infection. The effect will be exacerbated as your growing womb begins to press on your ureter and bladder, restricting the flow of urine even more.
UTI Treatment During Pregnancy
If you do develop a urinary tract infection during pregnancy, it is a good idea to see your doctor for treatment. A UTI could affect your baby if it is ignored as the infection could spread and irritate your uterus. Untreated UTIs are associated with lower birth weights and earlier births.
The doctor will confirm what’s wrong and prescribe an antibiotic for urine infection treatment that is safe for your baby. You will usually only need a short course of antibiotics for urine infection treatment although you may need to take them for a few days longer than usual when you are pregnant. You should be able to treat the infection at home, but if it has affected your kidneys you may be admitted to hospital for a few days. The doctor may also recommend a urine test after treatment to ensure that the infection has gone.