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"Guarding Children Against UTI: The Critical Role of Timely Diaper Changes and Hygiene Practices"

Dr. Gbenga Adebusoye, a medical professional, emphasizes that the delayed changing of soiled diapers and napkins in children can heighten their susceptibility to Urinary Tract Infection (UTI). Adebusoye shared this insight during an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Jos on Sunday.

He elucidated that when dirty diapers or napkins are not promptly changed, bacteria and other infection-causing microbes may infiltrate the urinary tract, leading to UTI. UTI, as defined by Adebusoye, is essentially an infection occurring along the urinary tract, which comprises the upper and lower urinary tracts.

The upper urinary tract involves the kidneys and urethras, where the kidneys produce urine that travels through the urethras into the bladder for temporary storage. The lower urinary tract includes the bladder and urethras, responsible for the passage of urine to the exterior. Infections affecting the kidneys and renal pelvis are termed upper urinary tract infections, while those impacting the bladder and lower urethras are lower urinary tract infections.

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Adebusoye highlighted the increased vulnerability of females to UTI due to the shorter female urethra, facilitating the faster ascent of microorganisms into the bladder compared to males. The proximity of the female urethra to the anus makes females more susceptible, often due to contamination by feces.

To mitigate risks, Adebusoye advised parents and caregivers to meticulously clean the anus from the perineum, especially in females, emphasizing the importance of proper hygiene practices.

Additionally, Adebusoye underscored that delaying urination in children contributes to UTI, as stagnant urine in the bladder provides an environment conducive for bacterial multiplication. Lack of breastfeeding or insufficient breast milk also heightens susceptibility to UTI, as breast milk antibodies play a protective role against infection.

The medical expert outlined other risk factors, including a family history of UTI, chronic diseases, constipation, abnormal kidney structure, kidney diseases such as cysts, and sexual abuse.

Symptoms of UTI in children, according to Adebusoye, encompass fever, painful urination, burning or stinging sensations during urination, frequent urination, foul-smelling urine, blood in the urine, lower abdominal pain, and back pain. Adebusoye recommended seeking medical attention for children exhibiting these symptoms.

In conclusion, Adebusoye urged parents and caregivers to promptly change diapers and napkins while fostering good hygiene practices. He also called on teachers to encourage children to use the restroom when needed during school hours and emphasized the importance of mothers ensuring adequate breastfeeding. Adebusoye further advised parents to ensure proper hydration for children by encouraging them to drink ample water, facilitating the flushing of the urinary tract.

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