Once you've finished potty-training your child, you might assume that your days of scrutinizing toilet activity are over. But there are a variety of other urological disorders that can strike during childhood, and the tween and teen years, from recurrent urinary tract infections (UTIs) to more serious ailments like kidney stones, hernias, and undescended testes. How can you know when to seek treatment for your child and when to take the "wait and see" approach? Read on to learn more about some signs and symptoms of common urological conditions, as well as when you'll want to make an appointment with a pediatric urologist.
What Symptoms Can Signal a Urological Condition?
Even after a child is potty-trained, bedwetting and accidents can be normal and aren't usually a cause for concern. Because children's bladders are relatively small when compared to the rest of their body, it can be tough to hold in urine all night. In almost all cases, your child should outgrow periodic bedwetting by first or second grade.
But other urological symptoms may be less harmless. Certain symptoms are strongly correlated with pediatric urological conditions, including the following:
- Pain while urinating, which can be a sign of a UTI;
- Blood in the urine, which can be a sign of a serious UTI, kidney stones, or a mass or lesion;
- Severe lower back pain without any injury to the back, which can indicate a kidney infection or kidney stones;
- Constipation or stool hoarding, which can impact the bladder's ability to fully empty itself;
- Lumps or bumps in the genital area, which can be anything from a harmless cyst or varicose vein to a more serious mass; and
- An inability to fully void the bladder or frequent complaining of having to urinate, which can be a sign of anything from chronic constipation to a urinary mass or UTI.
When Should Your Child See a Urologist?
Many of the above symptoms, particularly those associated with a UTI, may crop up periodically during childhood. Some might even resolve on their own without any need for medical intervention. But in general, whenever your child is having urinary discomfort, blood in their urine, or severe pain, it can be a good idea to seek out a referral to a pediatric urologist or nephrologist. These specialists can quickly identify a wide range of urological disorders and quickly get their patient on an efficient and effective treatment plan.
For more information, you will want to consult with professionals found at places such as Willow Oak Pediatrics.