Kidney stones are a collection of dissolved materials that gather on the inside of the kidney. These hard collections typically consist of calcium and uric acid. Kidney stones differ in size, and some can be very small and pass through the urinary tract unnoticed. However, some kidney stones can be as large as a golf ball. In special cases, kidney stones might occupy the entire kidney.
Kidney stones are usually excruciating; in fact, some people compare the pain to childbirth. While most kidney stones pass without medical treatment, some people might require surgery to break up bigger stones that cannot pass through the urinary tract.
Kidney Stones Warning Signs
Groin, back or side pain
When the stones pass through the ureter, they cause a blockage, which creates pressure in the kidney. The pressure caused by the blockage in the ureter activates nerve fibers that convey pain signals to the brain. You might start feeling the pain along your back, the side below your ribs, which might radiate to your stomach and groin area as the stone moves down the urinary tract.
Burning sensation or pain when urinating
Kidney stones cause a burning sensation while peeing. You may feel this type of pain as the stones get closer to the bladder.
Blood in urine
Also known as hematuria, blood in the urine is a common symptom of kidney stones. The bleeding can be red, brown, or pink, or you might not even see it at all. When the blood is visible to naked eye, it is called gross hematuria.
Frequent urination and passing small amounts of urine
Sometimes, a large kidney stone gets stuck in the ureter, causing an obstruction that may slow or even stop the flow of urine. If the urine stops altogether, it may be a medical emergency, and you should see a doctor immediately. Frequent urination is caused by the irritation in the walls of the bladder, which is caused by the stones.
Nausea and vomiting
Nausea and vomiting are common signs of kidney stones. The kidneys and the gastrointestinal tract share the same nerve connection; therefore, stones in the kidneys can activate nerves in the GI tract, leading to a stomachache. Nausea and vomiting can as well be another way of your body, reacting to extreme pain.
How to prevent kidney stones
You can prevent kidney stones by making a small modification to your current diet and dietary plan.
It is less likely that minerals and salt will form when you take more fluids. Darker urine is an indicator of dehydration. Professionals recommend that you drink six to eight glasses of water daily.
Reduce your salt intake
Salt causes water retention and results in dehydration. According to the FDA, the daily recommended salt intake for adults if below 2,300 mg, which is equal to one teaspoon of table salt. Avoid high salt food products like packed and prepared meals and food containing other types of sodium.
Go slow on animal protein
Consuming animal proteins might increase the likelihood of developing kidney stones. Consider replacing animal proteins with lentils, beans, and dried peas, which are all plant-based protein foods low in oxalate.
Drinking a lot of water may help flush out the urinary tract. However, large stones that can be hard to pass through will need medical procedures like renacidin irrigation to dissolve the kidney stone. Be sure to get medical help immediately when you experience kidney stones and symptoms of infection like fever, blood in urine, and intense unbearable pain. Always follow-up with your doctor even if you think the stones have passed because some symptoms come in waves. For all your urological supplies, visit Medical Supply Depot today!