9 Signs That Something Is Wrong with Your Kidneys

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kidney problems

The kidneys are among the most important organs of the body. Situated around the lower back area, they work as a pair, filtering your blood and eliminating toxic elements from your body through urination. If your kidneys are not healthy, they will not be able to efficiently remove waste from your body. Toxins that remain in the body for an extended period of time can cause sickness and even be life-threatening.

What things can interfere with the proper functioning of your kidneys?

There are a variety of factors that can mess up your kidney function and health. Below are some examples:

    • Being afflicted by certain chronic and acute diseases
    • Suffering from kidney trauma
    • Prolonged exposure to toxic compounds, such as those found in certain medications and environmental pollutants
    • Suffering from severe dehydration

What are the warning signs of a kidney problem?

The best way to know if you have kidney disease is by going to a doctor and undergoing a diagnostic test. But you also have to watch out for signs and symptoms that may signify that your kidneys are not working properly, such as:

    1. You have reduced energy levels

tired and low energy at workIf your kidney function is impaired, you will experience an increase in the amounts of impurities and toxins in your blood. This occurrence can make you feel weak and tired, even if you are just sitting or relaxing and not doing anything strenuous.

    1. You cannot focus or concentrate

A decline in kidney function can also affect your ability to focus or concentrate on tasks. The toxins that accumulate in your blood can negatively impact your brain function, making it difficult for you to carry out your usual responsibilities at work, home, or in school.

    1. You cannot sleep

Another warning sign that points to a kidney problem is sleeping difficulties. If your kidneys are impaired, the toxin levels in your body increase. This can result in a disruption to your sleeping cycle. If you are not getting sufficient sleep, your body will not be able to recover and recharge properly, leaving you exhausted, groggy, and disoriented, as well as increasing your risk of heart disease, mental health issues, and other health problems.

    1. Your skin is itchy and dry

Having a pair of healthy kidneys is vital to optimal health. So, if there is something wrong with them, there will be buildups of wastes and extra fluid that can also negatively impact your skin health. You will experience dryness and itchiness that can be a sign of an imbalance of nutrients and minerals in your blood.

    1. Your urine has blood in it

Your kidneys are important in keeping your blood cells working right. However, if your kidneys cannot properly filter out wastes and toxins, your blood cells can leak and mix with your urine. Once this happens, you have to discuss with your doctor how to treat your problem as soon as possible. Blood in the urine can also be a symptom of an infection, tumors, or other medical conditions that need immediate medical care.

    1. You have more frequent urges to urinate

Kidneys that are damaged can cause you to feel a stronger and more frequent need to urinate. If you experience this, especially during the night, you should pay your doctor a visit at the earliest opportunity to receive the proper treatment right away. In some cases, increased frequency of the urge to urinate is a sign of enlarged prostate (if you are a man) or some urinary infection.

    1. You have swollen ankles and feet

Because your kidney filters cannot execute their jobs the right way, various wastes and toxins that should not remain in your body are not being filtered out. This can result in sodium retention, which causes your lower extremities, such as your ankles and feet, to swell. Sometimes, swollen ankles and feet are also symptoms of liver disease, heart disease, or chronic leg vein issues.

    1. You get muscle cramps

Decreased kidney function can lead to electrolyte imbalance in your body. You may suffer from a decline in the amounts of essential nutrients, such as low calcium levels or low phosphorus levels, leading to muscle twitching and cramping.

    1. Your blood pressure levels increase

High blood pressure is a common symptom of many diseases, including kidney disease. It occurs when your body develops fluid and nutrient imbalances due to the accumulation of toxins, wastes, and impurities that need to be eliminated but remain inside your body because of your damaged kidney filters.

What are the available treatment options for kidney disease?

There are different treatment methods to treat kidney disease, depending on what caused the problem.

    • kidney stones and calcificationIf your kidney disease has caused your blood pressure levels to rise, your doctor may prescribe you high blood pressure medicines to lower your blood pressure and protect your kidneys. Two examples of these medications are angiotensin II receptor blockers and angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors.
    • If your kidney disease has caused your ankles and legs to swell, your doctor may recommend diuretics. These medications can stop fluid retention and promote fluid balance in your body, reducing the swelling in your lower extremities. They can also help manage your blood pressure.
    • If your kidney disease is linked to high cholesterol, your doctor may recommend medications that can reduce your cholesterol levels. Statins are drugs that can block a particular substance that facilitates cholesterol production in your body, lowering your cholesterol levels and risk of a stroke or a heart attack.

And, for people who are in the advanced stage or end-stage of kidney disease, they may need to undergo:

    • Dialysis

This is an artificial process that removes wastes and extra fluids that have accumulated in your blood. This makes use of a machine that does the job that your kidneys can no longer do.

    • Kidney transplant

This is a surgical procedure in which a healthy kidney is placed into your body, and requires a lifelong intake of medications.