Affecting more than half a million people each year, kidney stones are small pieces of minerals that build up due to chemicals in the urine. There are four kinds of kidney stones: calcium, uric acid, struvite, and cystine, and they can cause a number of symptoms. Some symptoms that may indicate the presence of kidney stones include pain in your lower back, blood in your urine, nausea, fever, or cloudy urine.
Sometimes, kidney stones may pass from the body through the urine without causing too much pain. However, kidney stones that do not move can cause a back-up of urine in the body, which can be quite painful.
How to Pass Your Kidney Stones
Most treatment for a kidney stone does not require invasive methods, as there are many natural remedies that you can try to pass a kidney stone.
Drink Lots of Water
The first way to pass a kidney stone is to drink plenty of water. Drinking water can help flush out your kidneys, as hydration is key for both passing and preventing the formation of kidney stones. Instead of aiming for the typical eight glasses of water per day, strive for at least 12 glasses to speed up the process.
Consume Lemon Juice
Lemon juice is often utilized to pass kidney stones because it contains citric acid, which can break down small kidney stones. Citric acid is one of the most commonly found acids in fruits and vegetables and can break down kidney stones by forming soluble citrate salts. Citrate salts can then bind to calcium, and not only helps pass kidney stones, but also helps to prevent stones from forming at all.
Drink Diluted Apple Cider Vinegar
Another natural remedy for kidney stones is apple cider vinegar. The phosphoric, acetic, and citric acid in apple cider vinegar helps to reduce the size of kidney stones and breaks down the tissues that form kidney stones. Summit Medical Clinic recommends always drinking apple cider vinegar diluted with water because undiluted apple cider vinegar may burn the throat or break down the teeth’s enamel.
Eat Diuretic Foods
Diuretic foods are those that increase your rate of urination, which helps your body expel excess water. These foods are optimal for people who are prone to kidney stones because they cause fluids to be flushed out of your system. Not only do diuretic foods help flush out kidney stones, but they also help discard kidney stone forming minerals. Some common foods that contain diuretics include celery, parsley, brussel sprouts, cucumbers, watermelon, and asparagus.
The best way to avoid having to pass kidney stones is to prevent their formation in the first place by incorporating these habits into your daily life.
Treatment Options for Passing Kidney Stones
Natural remedies typically work for small stones, but if these methods are not effective, then you may have a kidney stone that is too large to pass naturally. If this is the case, you should seek help from a nephrologist. Your nephrologist may prescribe medication, known as an alpha blocker, which is able to relax the muscles in your urinary tract. The purpose of this medication is to help you pass the kidney stone faster and with less pain. If medications do not work, you may need one of the following procedures to remove your kidney stones:
- Shock wave lithotripsy: uses sound wave to break up stones
- Percutaneous nephrolithotomy: minimally invasive surgical technique to remove stones
- Ureteroscopy: uses a scope to find and extract stones
Contact Summit Medical Clinic
At Summit Medical Clinic, we know how difficult it can be to live with kidney stones, which is why we provide consultation and care for the prevention and treatment of kidney-related diseases. If you are experiencing pain due to kidney stones, contact us today by calling (719) 630-1006.