Kidney stones are an unpleasant part of life that occurs in 1 in 20 individuals at one point in their life. These stones can be quite painful and bothersome and some even require medical intervention.
What are Kidney Stones?
They are a buildup of crystalline deposits in the urine such as calcium, oxalate, and uric acid. There becomes an imbalance of these deposits and less fluid in the urine can cause buildup. There are several types of kidney stones including calcium stones caused by buildup of calcium due to diet or metabolic disorders. Struvite stones are another example that come from urinary tract infections. Uric acid stones come from those that don’t drink enough fluids or have a high protein diet.
Kidney Stone Symptoms
The symptoms of these stones can include severe pain in the back and ribs. Pain that comes in waves of intensity is also another symptom. There may also be pain in urination, discolored urine, nausea and vomiting, small amounts of urine, and even fever and chills if there is an infection.
Kidney Stone Risk Factors
What are the risk factors for developing kidney stones? Genetics are something that can predispose you to kidney stones. A lack of fluid and dehydration can also be another cause of stones. High sodium and high protein diets can cause stones to form. Overweight individuals also have a higher chance of developing stones.
Treating Kidney Stones Naturally
So, what do you do if you are faced with a kidney stone? If your stones are fairly small, you may be able to handle them without any medical intervention. They can be flushed out of the system with heavy drinking of water. The water can help flush the kidneys and breakdown the crystalline stones that have formed.
There are also supplements on the market that can help to break down or prevent the formation of kidney stones. Pure Encapsulations has a supplement called IP6 Inositol Hexaphosphate which provides immune support and helps to break down crystalline deposits in the kidneys. It also has anti-platelet activity that can help prevent artery buildup and cardiovascular disease. It has also been shown to inhibit HIV virus replication.
Medical Approach to Kidney Stones
Pain relievers may be used if you happen to pass a small stone that could be uncomfortable. There are also alpha blocker medications that relax the muscles to make the passing of the stone less uncomfortable. However, if you happen to have a large kidney stone then the procedure is a little more complex. One way to help break the stone down is to use sound wave therapy. This process is highly effective and does not require invasive surgery. If this procedure does not work, there is also surgery where a small incision and instrument is used to remove the kidney stone. Ureteroscopes with cameras are also used to look inside the kidney and break up pieces and even place a stent to help with removal and inflammation issues that might occur.
Kidney stones can be a problem in your life and can be regulated or treated by the steps mentioned above. Drinking plenty of water and eating a low oxalate diet, is a possible way to keep the stones from forming and aggregating.