UNDERSTANDING KIDNEY STONES & ITS PREVENTION
Kidney stones are not dead weight stones hanging in your kidney and surroundings. They are formed when certain substances in our urine, including calcium, oxalate and sometimes uric acid actually go and crystallize in the urinary system. These crystals can come together and form the kidney stone.
Where are they formed?
Kidney stones usually are formed within the kidney itself. The urine collects in the kidney before flowing into the ureter, the tube that leads to the bladder. Small kidney stones usually pass out of the body through the urine and go unnoticed. Whereas large stones can irritate and stretch the ureter as they move towards the bladder. This blocks the normal flow of urine and causes severe and unbearable pain. At other times the kidney stones become too large to pass into the ureter and remain lodged in the kidney itself.
Causes for kidney Stone
The occurrence of kidney is mostly in your adults and middle aged than in elderly. It is more prevalent in men than women. One of the reasons for kidney stone is dehydration and people living hotter climates are more susceptible to kidney stones. Drinking very little fluids causes the concentration of minerals in urine to increase and form crystals. Alcohol and cigarettes can aggravate kidney stones and make it moreserious.
Prevention of Kidney Stones
There are many ways to prevent the occurrence of kidney stones:
- Drink 2 to 3 liters of liquid every day. When you drink plenty of fluids this will dilute the mineral concentration in urine and thus prevent stone formation.
- Limit the intake of oxalat-rich food which includes chocolate, nuts, spinach, beets and tea.
- Control vitamin C intake to less than 2 grams a day.
- Reduce the intake of salt since higher amounts may raise the level of calcium in the urine.
- A healthy diet rich in fruits and vegetables and fresh produce but with less of animal protein.
- Exercise and reduce weight, because obesity is known to increase the risk of kidney stones.
Types of Treatment
At first your doctor will advise you to drink lot of fluids and prescribe medicines to pass the stones through urine. If it does not work then procedures like lithotripsy or surgical intervention may be required.