Kidney stones is one such common ailment that can occur in both the genders. These stones or solid masses form in the kidneys gradually as a result of too much minerals that remain non-excreted from the kidneys.
There are various factors that contribute to the fast formation of kidney stones. The causes of kidney stones are so common and related to everyday life that a person who is unaware of them can easily fall prey to this health condition.
So, to your benefit, here we tell you the common causes of kidney stones:
Unhealthy eating habits – What you eat plays a crucial role in the functioning of your body organs. Dietary practices can play a major part in the formation of kidney stones. Excessively salty foods can increase the amount of calcium you excrete through the urine, and thus increase the risk of oxalate stones. Also, since calcium oxalate stones are the most common type of kidney stones, a diet high on the oxalate content can contribute to the formation of kidney stones. Moreover, if you intake large quantities of animal protein like beef, meat, chicken or pork, it can increase the uric acid levels in the body and make you more prone to uric acid stones.
Consuming hard water – Regular consumption of hard water that contains high amounts of minerals can put a person at higher risk of forming kidney stones. The excessive calcium present in the water may tend to calcify or solidify in the kidneys over a period of time. Further, this mostly gives rise to the painful symptoms of kidney stones. Therefore, keeping a check on the quality of water you consume is highly necessary to prevent kidney stones.
Inactive or sedentary lifestyle – Lack of exercise, inactivity and sedentary mode of living can be another major cause of kidney stones. These can contribute to the formation of kidney stones in multiple ways. Firstly, they can lead to obesity, high blood pressure and cholesterol levels, all of which are risk factors for kidney stones. Obesity can affect the acidity of urine and lead to the formation of kidney stones. Moreover, a lack of exercise may cause a loss in bone strength and density. This can increase the levels of calcium in the urine and cause calcium stones to form.
Once a person develops kidney stones, he has to experience certain side effects that they cause. You should be aware of the side effects that kidney stones can cause.
Side effects of kidney stones
- Nausea and vomit – If you have kidney stones, you may frequently experience nausea and the feel to vomit. This is because the nerves of the kidneys and the gastrointestinal tract are quite close and the kidney stones can trigger the GI tract nerves. This can make your stomach feel upset. Additionally, you may also feel nauseated because of your body’s response to the intense kidney stone pain.
- Urinary Tract infections – Recurrent urinary tract infections is another major side effect of stones in the kidneys. The stones can move around freely in the urinary tract and can get stuck there. This can lead to urine build-up and the site may become prone to microbial attack. Therefore, you may find yourself experiencing the troubles of urinary tract infections from time to time.
- Other urinary discomforts – Kidney stones are also associated with a number of urinary discomforts. You may experience a sharp burning sensation while peeing. The urge to urinate can be much more frequent than normal. Kidney stones may not allow you to empty your bladder in one go. In addition to this, you may also notice blood in your urine.
- Infection of the kidney – As explained above, kidney stones can make you more prone to urinary tract infections. In severe cases, if these are left untreated, the infection can spread and reach the kidneys. This can cause kidney infections and serious complications can arise. If not attended to at this stage also, it can have serious implications.
- Fever and chills – In severe cases, you may experience high fever along with chills. This usually indicates that there is an infection in the kidney. At this point, you must not delay and should rush to the emergency room as soon as possible.
- Increased chances of kidney failure – The presence of stones in the kidneys causes urinary problems, which in turn, overwork the kidneys. Over time, this can lead to permanent loss of kidney functioning and can increase the risk of kidney failures.
- Inflammation in the kidney – If a kidney stone gets stuck in the urinary tract, it can block the flow of urine completely. In such cases, urine buildup can lead to swelling and inflammation in the kidneys. This condition is called hydronephrosis and needs immediate medical attention.
After reading the side-effects, you must be wanting to know if it is possible to prevent these. Fortunately, yes it is possible to prevent these side effects of kidney stones to a great extent. Read further to know how.
The following tips will prove beneficial in preventing the formation of new kidney stone and dissolving the existing ones. But, before beginning let’s inform you that whatever tips you implement, make sure that you tell your doctor about them. Only follow the tips that your doctor approves depending upon your condition of kidney stones.
Tips to prevent the side effects of kidney stone
Keep hydrated! – It is as effective as simple it sounds. Whether or not dealing with kidney stones, 8-9 glasses of water are essential for optimal hydration. Staying hydrated becomes all the more important in the case of kidney stones. Drinking lots of water and fresh fruit juices (without added sugar) improves the functioning of kidneys. This ensures that toxins along with the small kidney stones effectively flush out.
Switch to plant-based proteins – Having too much meat (red meat), increases the chances of uric acid stone formation. Therefore, it is better to not rely on these for your daily protein requirements. Instead, you should switch to plant-based protein sources like tofu, quinoa, hemp seeds and chia seeds.
Avoid oxalate-rich foods – Cut back on your intake of food rich in oxalates like spinach, beans, caffeine, chocolates etc. Also, if you eat any high oxalate food, make sure that you intake enough calcium-rich foods as well. This will allow the calcium and oxalate to bind before they reach the urinary tract and thus prevent the formation of stones in the kidney.
Say no to added sugar and excess sodium – Foods that are high on the sodium and sugar content can increase the concentration of calcium in the urine and increase the risk of kidney stone formation. Therefore, if you are looking to prevent kidney stone formation, monitor the amounts of salt and sugar that you take. Remember not to cut back on sodium and sugar entirely. You need to fulfil your daily requirements of sugar and iodine as well.
Mild exercises and yoga – Not keeping an active lifestyle is a big cause of kidney stones. Therefore, make sure that you adopt a healthy lifestyle. It is not necessary to opt for rigorous high-intensity exercises. Any exercises will work, as long as they enhance the blood circulation in your body to allow optimal functioning of the kidneys. So go for small walks, jog a little, do a little cycling or perform some effective yoga asanas. Just keep your body moving and that should suffice.
If the aforementioned tips do not prove to be successful in relieving the symptoms of kidney stones, it is better to consider permanent treatment.
Owing to the advancements in technology, a large number of least invasive kidney stone surgeries have come into existence. The most popular modern surgical treatments for kidney stones are laparoscopic surgery, laser surgery and shock wave lithotripsy.
All three advanced kidney stone surgeries are absolutely painless and 100% risk-free. The chances of complications or postoperative problems are nil. The success rate of these treatments is very high and they offer a speedy and smooth recovery. Your doctor would ask you to follow a few precautionary tips, and you’ll be good to go back to your routine life in a couple of days.
These modern surgeries are available at several hospitals nowadays. However, as important as it is to choose the right treatment, choosing the right doctor and hospital is equally important.
One healthcare provider that you can rely on for your kidney stone treatment is Pristyn Care. They are one of the leading healthcare providers in the country and offer state of the art techniques for kidney stone treatment in Delhi and all the other major Indian cities. All their doctors are highly qualified and have a great track record in successfully treating kidney stone patients. You can get in touch with them, clear all your queries and then receive the best-suited treatment at one of their hospitals.
An improper or imbalanced lifestyle and delaying proper treatment can result in the aggravation of your kidney stone symptoms and can give rise to a number of problems. Therefore, it is important that you maintain a proactive approach and attend to kidney stones as soon as the symptoms start appearing. Get in touch with an experienced medical professional, get a proper diagnosis and undergo the appropriate treatment. Doing so will not just save you from any complications, but also assist you in a quick and safe recovery.