They aren’t actually stones but if you have to pass them in your urine they just may feel like one. They are usually small pebble-like objects in the shape of corn kernel or a grain of salt. They are formed when the body has a substantial quantity of minerals and not enough fluids to clear them out of the body. Over time, these minerals accumulate and become stones that can cause pain and discomfort. Scroll below to learn more about the causes, symptoms, and prevention of kidney stones.
Causes of kidney stones
You are more likely to develop kidney stones if you have certain conditions, including:
- Urinary tract blockage
- Cystinuria (autosomal recessive disease)
- Hyperparathyroidism (a disorder in which too much parathyroid hormone is released leading to extra calcium in the blood)
- Chronic bowel inflammation
- Cystic kidney disease
- Renal tubular acidosis (a disease where kidneys fail to eradicate acids causing acidity in the blood).
- Digestive problems
- Gout (swelling of the joints)
- Hypercalciuria (a disorder in which urine contains large amounts of calcium)
- Hyperoxaluria (a disorder in which there is a large amount oxalate)
- Recurring UTIs
- Hyperuricosuria (a disorder in which there’s a substantial amount of uric acid in the urine)
- Kidney stones usually occur in individuals who don’t drink the recommended 6-8 glasses of water a day.
There are four main types of kidney stones namely: calcium stones (caused by increased calcium intake), struvite stones (caused by infections like UTI), uric acid stones (caused due to lack of water) and cystine stones (caused due to hereditary conditions that excrete cystinuria amino acids in abundance).
How to prevent kidney stones
Our Urologists in Dubai say that prevention is always better than cure and fortunately, there are a number of natural ways that can help you prevent kidney stones. The challenge is to stick to a lifestyle that that easily incorporates the natural remedies. Here’s what you need to do to prevent kidney stones:
- Reduce Sodium intake as salt crystals can lead to calcium stones.
- Reduce animal protein like fish, red meat and chicken and replace it with plant-based protein.
- Drink plenty of water throughout the day. The recommended limit is 6-8 glasses a day.
- Avoid supplements and get the essential nutrients from organic fruits and vegetables.
- Be extra careful about the medications you take to ensure that they don’t cause stones in the long run. Always check with your doctor before taking a medication.
- Switch to herbal medication whenever possible.
Final thoughts: Kidney stones develop over a long period of time. Good lifestyle habits can help you not only prevent kidney stones but also eradicate the chances of other kidney diseases. If you or any of your family members experience any kind of kidney pain, talk to your healthcare provider and diagnose the cause of the pain right away. With timely diagnosis and treatment, you can find relief from kidney pain and discomfort and live a healthy life.