In today’s video, we’re going to talk about 10 early signs of kidney disease. When it comes to keeping your body healthy, your kidneys are the heroes of your internal organs. They are one of the smallest organs in your body, but they have one of the biggest jobs. They make hormones, balance electrolytes, and remove toxins. Your kidneys must filter 20-150 quarts of blood just to produce 1 to 2 quarts of urine that has wastes and extra fluids in it!
If you have chronic kidney disease (CKD), like 10% of the world population and 37 million Americans (15% of adults), your kidneys will slowly stop working. Early treatment is a great idea but 90% people with CKD don’t even know they have it!
This is why CKD has been on the rise. Experts say people with kidney problems may not have symptoms until they need to be in the hospital.
That is why CKD is sometimes referred to as a silent killer.
A lot of different things can cause CKD. These include high blood pressure, diabetes, inflammation of the nephrons (tiny filters) and urinary tract obstruction.
Make sure you watch through to Number 1, because any symptoms of kidney distress must be taken seriously, and If you see that, go straight to your doctor!
He or she may choose to do either a blood or a urine test to check for any kidney problems. In the meantime, here are the 10 telltale early signs of kidney disease.
Please remember that these symptoms might mean other issues, so you should talk to your doctor.
So if you’re ready, let’s get into it. As always, this video is educational and does not construe medical advice, we are not doctors.
Let’s begin with the most obvious sign:
You see changes in your urine
If you’re seeing blood in your urine, it could mean that your kidney filters have been damaged and blood cells are now leaking.
If you’ve been peeing more often than normal lately, especially at night, then there could be an issue with kidneys not functioning properly, and causing a great urge to always answer nature’s call.
Finally, when your kidneys start to fail, they can leak protein from the blood into your pee. This makes bubbles in your urine like when you whip egg whites for a cake batter!
Your legs, hands, or face are swollen
Bad kidneys can’t get rid of fluid. The salt that you eat stays in your body and this makes swelling worse. Especially the swelling in your feet, ankles, hands, face, or around your eyes. Protein leaking into urine can also cause puffiness around your eyes.
You’re short of breath
When your kidneys stop being able to remove fluids from your body, the fluid can build up in your lungs. That makes it harder to take a deep breath and get oxygen into your blood, which makes you out of breath quicker.
You have rashes or itchy, dry skin
When your body is overwhelmed with toxins, it will look for ways to get rid of them. One way is through the skin. This can lead to rashes, dry or irritated skin and open sores. You may have itchy skin because urea (a product of protein breakdown) and phosphorous (a mineral) are not excreted by your kidneys.
You have a metallic taste in your mouth
If your kidneys are not working well, you might have an ammonia-like, metallic taste in your mouth. When unfiltered waste builds up in your blood (called uremia), it will change the way food tastes. Your breath might stink (halitosis) and you don’t feel like eating.
You have poor concentration
People with kidney disease sometimes say that they have “brain fog”. This is because the kidneys can’t remove toxins from the blood (and they go to your brain) and there are not enough red blood cells to deliver oxygen to the brain. This makes you feel dizzy and have poor memory and concentration.
You’re fatigued or feel weak
Your kidneys make a hormone called EPO (erythropoietin) which tells your body to make red blood cells. When your kidneys don’t work well, they do not produce enough red blood cells and you develop anemia. Red blood cells carry oxygen to all parts of your body. When you have low supplies of it, oxygen doesn’t get to key organs and muscles causing fatigue and weakness. Also when there is too much fluid and toxins in the blood, this can cause fatigue.
You have trouble sleeping
If your kidneys aren’t working well, it can cause trouble sleeping. This is because toxins are kept in the blood and stay in your brain. This makes it more likely for your to develop sleep apnea (a condition where you have trouble breathing while you’re asleep). And anemia can lead to restless leg syndrome (when you keep moving your legs while trying to sleep and this interrupts the sleep).
You feel nauseous
As toxins and wastes build up in your blood, they can affect your brain, making you feel sick or vomit.
Your muscles are cramping
Your kidneys work to keep your blood balanced with electrolytes like potassium, calcium, and sodium. One of the most important jobs of potassium is to make sure that your muscles work right. If you have too much or not enough potassium in your blood it can give you muscle aches and heart palpitations. Too much potassium can also be life threatening.
Next, let’s see what you can do to keep your kidneys healthy.
To avoid symptoms of kidney problems, there are several things you should do according to the National Institutes of Health (NIH):
- Keep your blood sugar in check if you have diabetes.
- Maintain a healthy blood pressure.
- Eat healthy meals. If you are already displaying symptoms of kidney problems, avoid a diet high in protein, fat, sodium, and potassium.
- Have yearly tests to ensure your kidneys are functioning properly.
- Avoid painkillers unless necessary because they can damage your kidneys-especially non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen and naproxen.
- Contact your doctor immediately if you think you have a bladder or kidney infection.
- Don’t smoke.
There you have it! The 10 possible early signs of kidney disease.
The National Kidney Foundation (NKF) says that people who have high blood pressure, diabetes, or a family history of kidney failure should be tested for kidney disease every year. Make sure your doctor knows if you are having symptoms too!
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And now, over to you: Which of these seven things are you doing to take care of your kidney health?
Leave your comment below.
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