Urinary Problems During Pregnancy

Many women experience some unpleasant conditions during pregnancy like urine infection, urinating more frequently, constipation, haemorrhoids etc.


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Urinary Tract Infection

Generally, urine infections are caused by bacteria from the skin, rectum or vagina which enters the urethra. There are different types of urinary tract infection, commonly known as UTI. Below are some of the urinary tract infections which occur during the time of pregnancy.


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Kidney Infection: Also known as pyelonephritis, kidney infection is one of the most serious complications during pregnancy period. Germs in the form of bacteria travel from the bladder up through the urethras which infect the kidneys. If not treated on time, the infection may spread on the bloodstream which becomes life-threatening at times.

Asymptomatic Bacteriuria: Sometimes, bacteria reach the urinary tract without showing any type of symptoms in pregnant women. This type of bacteria is known as asymptomatic bacteriuria. If such bacteria form in non-pregnant women then there is no problem at all. But in case of pregnant women, it needs to be treated. If asymptomatic bacteriuria is left untreated, it increases the risk of kidney infection. So, during your pregnancy, get your urine tested regularly. And if you are tested positive, you will be given oral antibiotics which are safe to consume during pregnancy period.
Cystitis or Bladder Infection: Cystitis or bladder infection is most common among women between the ages of twenty to fifty who are sexually active. In such case, bacteria form in the bladder where it multiplies which causes inflammation and other symptoms of bladder infection.


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Symptoms of urinary tract infection

In some cases, there are no symptoms of urinary tract infection. But during your first pre-natal examination, your doctor will test for asymptomatic urine infection. And if the below mentioned symptoms arise in your pregnancy period, consult your doctor.

  • Sudden and quick urge to pee, also known as urinary urgency
  • Burning sensation or pain while urinating
  • Bloody urine
  • Foul smelling urine
  • Feeling pain in the area of pubic bone

How to avoid urinary tract infection?

If you are a pregnant woman, you can minimise the chance of getting affected with urinary tract infection by taking the following measures.

  • Drink lots of water every day to keep hydrated
  • Empty your bladder fully when you urinate. And don’t stop your urge to pee as this may lead to urine infection
  • To prevent bacteria in the stool getting near the urethra, wipe yourself from front to back after the bowel movement
  • Always keep your genital area hygienic and clean by cleaning with water and mild soap
  • During your pregnancy avoid using sprays, powders and strong hygienic wash in the genital area as it can irritate your genitals and urethra. It makes a better place for the bacteria to breed
  • To eliminate genital bacteria, urinate before and after sex
  • You can drink cranberry juice during your pregnancy as it helps in reducing the level of bacteria and stops breeding in the urinary tract
  • Stay away from having chocolate and caffeine during your pregnancy as it can irritate the bladder

Treatment of urine infection during pregnancy

There are different types of antibiotic which help to stop urine infection during pregnancy. Usually seven days course is prescribed by the doctor to treat urine infection. The antibiotic given by the doctors during the time of pregnancy are safe to consume and doesn’t have any adverse effect. So, consult your doctor and get urine test done from time to time to keep a check on urinary tract infection and get treated accordingly.

For those infecting with cystitis can drink plenty of water and flush out the bladder time to time. But it is advisable to consult your doctor if such infection occurs. However, drinking lots of water helps you keep hydrated if you have fever during your pregnancy.

Role of Each Vitamin During Pregnancy

It is very essential that your food contains different types of vitamins, minerals and other nutrients for you to stay fit and healthy. It is even more necessary in the case of pregnant women. During pregnancy, not only does the mother need different types of nutrients but you must remember the baby also receives its food from the mother. So, during pregnancy, you need to have more vitamin rich food than you did normally. At times, you have to take supplements if you don’t meet your bodily demands through food.

Different types of vitamins have varied roles in the growth of the baby. So, always consult your doctor before taking any type of vitamin supplements.


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 Vitamin A

Vitamin A is one of the main requirements for foetal development, proper functioning of the immune system and visual health. Deficiency of vitamin A can cause night blindness etc. During pregnancy, it is advisable not to consume vitamin A supplements like retinol which is a compound of vitamin A as too much of it can harm the baby. Take your doctor’s advice before taking supplements of vitamin A. Some of the best dietary sources of vitamin A are:

  • Vegetables like carrots, potatoes, pumpkin, broccoli etc
  • Milk
  • Eggs
  • Liver

Vitamin D

You need vitamin D to keep your bones and teeth healthy. But during pregnancy, the baby also needs vitamin D during its first phase of development.  Vitamin D helps your child’s teeth and bones grow. It also helps in regulating the immune system, nerves and muscles of the body. As we all know, the best source of vitamin D is sunlight, but too much of sunlight can lead to skin ageing etc. So, it is better to have vitamin D rich food and vitamin supplements during pregnancy.

Deficiency of vitamin D can soften the bones of your child and make it suffer from diseases like rickets. Some of the best sources of vitamin D are:

  • Cereal
  • Milk
  • Fatty fish

Vitamin C

Vitamin C is one of the essential vitamins during pregnancy. Vitamin C helps to form collagen in the blood vessels and during pregnancy the requirement of blood volume increases. So, a pregnant woman needs more vitamin C for the growth of the unborn baby.

During pregnancy, the average requirement of vitamin C is around 40 mg/day. But in some cases, the necessity is around 60 mg/day or more. Some best dietary sources of vitamin C are:

  • Vegetables like green bean, potato, broccoli, papaya, tomato, bell pepper etc
  • Citrus fruits
  • Strawberries

Folic Acid

Folic acid helps in the growth of the cells and prevents neural tube defects. During pregnancy, a woman needs around 600 mcg of folic acid. Some dietary sources of folic acid are:

  • Green leafy vegetables
  • Vegetables like spinach, beans, broccoli and beet
  • Fruits like strawberries and oranges
  • Fortified cereals and pastas

Vitamin E

Vitamin E helps to form red blood cells and muscles. During pregnancy, you need to have vitamin E either through dietary source or through supplements. Some of the excellent dietary sources of vitamin E are:

  • Fortified cereals
  • Vegetable oils
  • Spinach
  • Nuts

Vitamin B1 or Thiamin

Vitamin B1 or Thiamin helps in raising the energy level and regulates the nervous system, as well. It also helps in maintaining appetite and growth. Deficiency of vitamin B1 can cause diseases like beriberi. So, it is advisable to have around 1.4 mg of vitamin B1 per day when you are pregnant.

You can find good source of vitamin B1 in the following:

  • Fortified cereals
  • Wheat germ
  • Whole grain
  • Pasta
  • Eggs
  • Legumes
  • Organ meat

Vitamin B2 or Riboflavin

For better energy, good eyesight and healthy skin, vitamin B2 or riboflavin is very essential. So, during pregnancy, your body should get around 1.4 mg of vitamin B2 daily. Some dietary sources of vitamin B2 are:

  • Fortified cereals
  • Dairy products
  • Egg
  • Fish
  • Meat


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 Vitamin B3 or Niacin

Vitamin B3 or Niacin is essential for the normal functioning of the gastrointestinal tract and nervous system. It also promotes healthy skin. A pregnant woman needs 18 mg of vitamin B3 on a daily basis either through dietary source or supplements. Some sources of vitamin B3 are:

  • Fortified cereals and bread
  • High-protein food
  • Peanuts
  • Milk
  • Fish
  • Egg

Vitamin B6 or Pyridoxine

Vitamin B6 helps in forming red blood cells and getting rid of morning sickness during pregnancy. During pregnancy, a woman requires around 1.9 mg of vitamin B6 daily in any form. Some of the good dietary sources of vitamin B6 are:

  • Vegetables like cabbage, spinach, bean, broccoli and peas
  • Nuts like walnut and peanut
  • Brown rice
  • Wheat germ
  • Oats
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Chicken
  • Fish
  • Egg

It is essential to have a healthy diet during pregnancy for the proper growth of the baby. So, consult your doctor from time to time and take supplements when prescribed.


Diabetes After Delivery


After the delivery of the baby, the body of the new mother starts recovering from the  phases of pregnancy and delivery. During the first week after delivery, some women manage to have normal glucose level in the blood, but some may have odd sugar level swings. Normally, blood sugar level is checked at various times before you get discharged from hospital in order to check if gestational diabetes has been resolved or not.


It is natural that during the first week after delivery, you will feel stressed, tired and lack of sleep. This may lead to napping at odd hours like breakfast or lunch time. Skipping meals may make your sugar level low which is really very dangerous. So, it is very essential to have healthy meals at the proper time.

In order to maintain your sugar level after delivery:

  • It is very important to get your sugar level tested frequently after six weeks of postpartum.


  • Weight control is very necessary to control diabetes. It also reduces the risk of gestational diabetes in the next pregnancy.
  • Following a healthy diet chart that includes vegetables, fruits and grains is extremely helpful if you have high blood sugar after childbirth.


  • You should continue medical care follow-ups and do all the recommended tests.
  • Exercising daily for at least 30 minutes for five days a week really helps in normalising your blood sugar level.

Pregancy Exercise


  • Try to do light work, have a warm bath or try walking after childbirth.
  • Breastfeeding is absolutely safe and good for women with diabetes; it also lowers the risk of Type 2 Diabetes.


Normally, gestational diabetes goes away immediately after delivery. In case, if you are not totally cured of gestational diabetes immediately after childbirth, it should be cured within a few weeks or months.

After delivery you may feel mental or physical distress. Following healthy habits after delivery will reduce these issues, making you and your baby healthy.

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Umbilical Stump

What is an umbilical stump?

During pregnancy, babies receive nutrients and oxygen through the help of the placenta. The placenta is attached to the inner wall of the uterus and is connected to the unborn baby with the help of the umbilical cord. After the birth of the baby, the umbilical cord is cut in a painless manner as it is not needed after birth. Due to the absence of any nerve, neither the mom nor the baby will feel pain while the cord is cut. And this results in a short stump on the navel of the baby.


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How long does the umbilical stump remain on the baby’s navel?

Normally, it takes around five to fifteen days for the stump to dry up and fall. If it is kept dry, the average time taken is seven days. So, you should keep the stump dry and free from infections.

When the umbilical stump starts drying, it shrivels up and the colour changes from yellowish-green to black or brown. And after the stump dries off totally, it drops naturally. So, it is advisable not to pull the stump; let it fall by itself. You may notice blood stains on the diaper when the stump falls off; it is quite normal. So, it may take some days for the wound to heal. Sometimes, you may see some fluid drainage and bits of lumpy flesh may remain on the baby’s navel. If these fluids and fleshy lumps don’t disappear on their own, consult your child’s doctor.


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How to take care of your newborn baby’s umbilical cord stump?

Parents should take proper care of the baby’s umbilical cord so that it dries up quickly and falls off on its own. And in order to keep the umbilical cord stump uninfected, there are various measures which you should follow.

  • You should keep the umbilical stump clean. If the umbilical stump gets sticky or dirty, you should clean it using plain water. But don’t forget to dry it with a clean and absorbent piece of cloth or fan it with paper.
  • Parents should take proper care to keep the stump dry. So, keep the umbilical stump exposed to air as much as you can which will help the base to get dry. To avoid the stump from getting covered, fold the front of the baby’s diaper. Or you can cut out some portion of the diaper in the front so that it doesn’t touch the umbilical cord. It also prevents the contents of the diaper from disturbing the umbilical stump.
  • During summer, you can dress your child in a T-shirt and diaper which will help the stump receive better air circulation. And during winter, dress your baby in loose clothes and take proper care to make the stump remain dry.
  • Till the time the stump falls off, it is advisable to give sponge bath to your baby. It will help the stump from getting wet. And after the stump falls off, you may give your child a bath in a tub of water.
  • Even if the umbilical cord looks like it is hanging by a thread, don’t try to pull it off. Let it dry and fall off naturally.
  • Till the umbilical stump of your newborn baby falls off and has healed totally, you should avoid dressing your child by covering the whole body.
  • Avoid using antiseptic without your doctor’s advice and let the umbilical stump fall off naturally.


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Signs of infection:

During the process of healing, if your baby’s stump looks a little mucky, it is quite normal. But if the following symptoms occur, it is advisable to consult your child’s doctor.

  • The umbilical stump becomes swollen, smells foul or discharges yellowish fluid.
  • The navel or the surrounding area becomes red and swollen.
  • The umbilical cord stump continuously bleeds.
  • Baby has fever or remains unwell.
  • Baby shows lack of interest while breastfeeding.

So, if you have a newborn baby, take proper care of the umbilical cord so that the stump gets dried up easily and drop off normally.