Healthy kidneys are imperative for a healthy lifestyle. They are in charge of filtering out impurities in our blood and removing excess waste. They also help to control blood pressure and the production of red blood cells. When the kidneys become damaged, they are unable to perform their job. They can become damaged due to diabetes, high blood pressure, and other chronic illnesses. If you think you are experiencing early problems with your kidney, visit AFC Urgent Care Malden to get checked by one of our physicians. Our doctor can help recommend certain treatments and next steps for all patients.
Symptoms of Kidney Disease
It can be easy to miss common, early symptoms of kidney disease before they become severe. Certain symptoms can include:
- Poor appetite
- Swollen ankles or feet
- Trouble sleeping
- Difficulty concentrating
- Frequent urination
Certain symptoms can show more severe stages of kidney failure. Those symptoms can include fluid retention, anemia, a rise in potassium levels, and loss of appetite.
Chronic Kidney Conditions
Chronic kidney disease is the most common condition. It is primarily caused by high blood pressure and diabetes. Both conditions increase the pressure of the blood vessels in the kidneys, which damages them over time. This causes your kidneys not to work properly, and function begins to decline.
Kidney stones are another condition that can cause damage to the kidneys, but this is rarer. Kidney stones happen when minerals and other substances in the blood crystalize and form solid masses. They are passed through urination.
Other conditions that can cause damage to the kidneys include urinary tract infections, glomeruli, and polycystic kidney disease. UTIs and glomeruli can be treated and do not always cause problems if properly monitored. Polycystic, however, causes cysts in the kidneys, which can interfere with their function.
Some patients are at higher risk of developing kidney disease. In addition to diabetes and high blood pressure, the elderly, those with a family history of kidney disease, or those of African, Hispanic, Asian, or American Indian descent are at higher risk.
Preventing Kidney Disease
Certain risk factors with kidney disease are out of anyone’s control, such as family history or race. However, drinking plenty of water, controlling blood sugar and blood pressure, reducing salt, and quitting smoking can all help keep your kidneys healthy. Certain OTC medications such as aspirin or ibuprofen can also cause kidney damage. Food with excessive sodium, citric acid, or oxalate can also contribute to getting kidney stones.