Prevention Of Kidney Infections
What if the drains of your house get blocked or what if the exhaust systems of your cars stop working? Both of them have the same purpose- to remove waste and toxic substance. The mere thinking of these will make us worried.
Similarly, the main job of the kidneys is to remove toxins and extra water from our blood out of our body in the form of urine. What will happen if they stop functioning properly? All the waste material in our blood will stay in the body and cause several more infections. Take a deep breathe and think-what can happen if you catch this infection. The consequences can be life-threatening.
Kidneys are a part of the urinary tract system or urinary system which helps in removing urine from our bodies. Kidney infection is a type of urinary tract infection that begins in your urethra or bladder and travels up the ureter infecting the kidneys. This infection is also called Renal infection or Pyelonephritis.
Causes of Kidney Infections
The existence of bacteria in the urine is the major cause of kidney infections. The bacteria responsible for 80% cases of kidney and urinary tract infections are called Escherichia coli (E coli). These bacteria gain access to the urinary tract from outside through urethra, the tube that carries urine from your body. They multiply in large numbers and travel up to your kidneys with the help of ureter causing kidney infections. Kidney infections are much more severe than the other urinary tract infections as the bacteria will also infect the blood flowing from the kidneys.
Women are more sensitive to urinary tract infection due to the shorter length of their urethras in comparison to those of men. It becomes easier for the bacteria to get into women’s urethra as they will take less time to reach the bladder to cause the infection.
Risk Factors For Kidney Infections
There are a number of risk factors which increase the chances of this infection.
Pregnancy-During pregnancy, the flow of urine into the bladder is slow due to the enlarged uterus.
Urinary catheters-Using urinary catheters continuously for a long time without changing them, may cause kidney infections.
Kidney stones-Kidney stones either block or slows down the flow of urine causing a kidney infection.
Diabetes– It weakens our immune system and increases the risk of this infection.
Vesicoureteral reflux (VUR)– It’s a condition in which the pee flows backwards from the bladder toward the kidneys.
Symptoms of Kidney Infections
You should look out for these signs and symptoms to treat kidney infections on time-fever, abdominal pain, frequent urination, painful urination, vomiting, nausea, chills, blood or pus in your pee, weakness and upset stomach.
Diagnosis and Treatment of Kidney Infections
When any of the above symptoms show up, it is always better to see a medical professional. Usually, the doctors suggest the patients go for urine and blood test for analysis of any bacterial growth in the urine. If a kidney infection is diagnosed, then the doctor will prescribe some antibiotics to kill the bacteria present in the urine and the blood.
The treatment to be followed will depend on the seriousness of the infection. If the infection is uncomplicated, then it can be treated with oral antibiotics and enough intake of fluids. However, if the symptoms are of serious nature or there is no improvement in the patient’s condition even after taking antibiotics, then hospitalization becomes necessary.
When a person is diagnosed with a kidney infection, he is required to follow a 1-2 weeks course of antibiotics prescribed by the doctor. The choice of antibiotics depends on the medical situation of the patient, allergies and tolerance.
Painkillers will help you in relieving the pain of the infection.
Natural remedies to treat kidney infections
Staying hydrated is the most important thing to keep in mind when suffering from kidney infections. The more liquid you drink, the more your kidneys get purified. Taking these natural remedies at home along with the antibiotics reduces the effects of this infection in the body.
Cranberry Juice –This juice increases the acidity of the urine killing the bacteria present in it. One glass a day is recommended for patients having kidney stones.
Apple Cider Vinegar –This vinegar has malic acid in it which has anti-bacterial properties. It kills the bacteria responsible for the infection. Taking this juice with honey is very beneficial in case of kidney infections.
Preventions of kidney infections
- Hygiene plays a crucial role in preventing kidney infections. Kidney infections usually happen when we do not take proper care of ourselves. If we keep our us and the surroundings clean, a kidney infection can be prevented.
- Drink as many fluids as you can, especially water.
- Avoid delays in urination. Pee when you need to pee.
- Keep your urinal area clean as the bacteria infecting kidneys enters from there.
- Always clean the toilet seats before using it.
- In case, you are using catheters, then change it at regular intervals to avoid growth of bacteria in the urine.