Kidney Infection Treatment Options
Kidney infections are treated with antibiotics, pain relievers, and fever reducers. Uncomplicated kidney infection and few complicated kidney infections will be treated on an outpatient basis by a general practitioner, but people with a complicated kidney infection likely require hospitalization and intravenous antibiotics.. Pregnant women may require additional consultation with an obstetrician or gynecologist.
What Causes Kidney Infections
A kidney infection is caused by a bacterial infection that moves from your dog’s bladder up the ureters, the tubes that connect the kidneys to the bladder. The most common bacteria that are seen in kidney infections are E. coli and Staphylococcus. Other bacteria such as Proteus, Streptococcus, Klebsiella, Enterobacter, and pseudomonas can also cause bladder infection and can be seen in dogs with kidney infections.
Try Drinking Some Unsweetened Cranberry Juice
While the research is a bit unclear, cranberries have been used as a prevention of UTI for generations. Studies have shown that cranberries actually make it harder for the bacteria that cause UTIs to stick to the urinary tract walls. So, while not really a remedy, if you frequently get UTIs, it might be worth drinking a couple of glasses of unsweetened cranberry juice, or snacking on the actual fruit .
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From Wrong To Worse: Infection And Disease
Two of the most common kidney problems are infections and kidney stones.
Technically, kidney infection is a form of urinary tract infection resulting from E. coli bacteria gaining access to the urinary tract and connecting with the kidneys. This form of infection is common and generally treated with antibiotics.
Kidney stones, on the other hand, are solid, chemical deposits that form inside the kidneyoften due to dehydration. A kidney stone can be nearly invisible to the naked eye, as large as a marble, or bigger.
Tiny kidney stones pass out of the body in the urine, so youre never aware of those. Larger kidney stones, however, can become lodged in the ureter, a thin tube connecting the kidneys and the bladder.
When they become stuck, these stones can cause severe pain in the side or back, blood in the urine, and difficulty urinating.
It can take days or even weeks for a kidney stone to pass on its own. So, if youre experiencing kidney stone symptoms, see a health care professional as soon as possible.
Take An Otc Pain Reliever
Over-the-counter pain medications can temporarily relieve pain caused by a UTI. Use caution here, and always speak with a doctor first, as some UTIs can turn into kidney infections. In these cases, patients should avoid taking nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs , which could make the infection worse.
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Not All Kidney Pain Is Treatable With At
While these solutions may help relieve, or in some cases eliminate, mild kidney pain, they will not stop infections from spreading. When left untreated, even the occasional UTI can turn into something more severe, which is why its always in your best interest to contact your urologist when you are experiencing any type of pain in your kidneys.
Based on your symptoms, an in-office visit may not be required. Talk to your urologist and ask questions about the type of pain you are experiencing. They will be able to tell you if at-home remedies are possible, or if you need to schedule an appointment.
As always, feel free to contact us with any questions you may have. And dont forget to download our Nutrition & Lifestyle Guide before you go for more health and wellness tips from our urological experts!
Prevention Is Key To Fighting Kidney Disease
Now that weve looked at the bad news, youll be happy to hear that theres a good side here, too, and it is this: For the most part, the conditions that lead to kidney problems are avoidable. And, often times, very avoidable.
A great way to start is by asking your health-care professional for blood panel readings of three key measures of kidney health: the BUN and creatinine levels and your eGFR numbers.
Here’s a quick overview of the two:
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Can You Treat A Uti Without Antibiotics
If you’re experiencing the symptoms of a UTI, you should always check in with your doctor first.
Because they’re at higher risk for complications, men and pregnant women should never try to treat a UTI at home, according to Rena Malik, M.D., a urologist and director of female pelvic medicine and reconstructive surgery at the University of Maryland School of Medicine.
But for some women with no other serious health problems, it can be possible to treat a UTI at home, without antibiotics. For instance, mild or uncomplicated UTIs may clear out of the bladder naturally, as a strong immune system can help resolve these infections.
To boost your immune system and help reduce your risk of severe UTIs, it’s important to stay well-hydrated and incorporate essential vitamins and nutrients into your diet. And while these methods won’t treat your UTI as effectively as antibiotics after it’s occured, they can help prevent future ones from occurring.
Frequency Of Urinary Intake
Youâll feel like you need to go 20 times per day. In addition, your bladder will be irritated and you will have to go to the toilet only a few times. The bladder is designed to hold a lot of urine. However, if your bladder becomes irritated from an infection, you will feel like you need to go every day.
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Change Menstrual Pads Tampons Or Cups Frequently
Low-absorbency pads made of synthetic materials can expose your vulva to bacteria and increase your risk of infection. Using tampons can encourage bacteria to develop faster, so its important to change your tampon regularly. Tampons and menstrual cups may increase your risk of getting or worsening a UTI if its not positioned correctly. If it pushes on your urethra and traps your urine, bacteria can spread to the bladder. Changing the size or shape of a menstrual cup may help prevent recurrent UTIs.
Can You Prevent Kidney Infections
Prevention of urinary tract and kidney infection primarily focuses on reducing the associated risk factors. As mentioned earlier, the majority of urinary tract infections are caused by the bacteria gaining entry into the urinary system through the urethra. Therefore, personal hygiene plays an important role in preventing kidney infection.
Examples of preventative measures include:
- Emptying the bladder after sexual intercourse or wiping from front to back after going to the bathroom may significantly reduce the chance of developing kidney infection in women.
- Drinking plenty of fluids has been shown to be the single most effective measure for preventing urinary tract infections.
- In individuals with long-standing urinary catheters, routinely scheduled changing of the catheter as well as regular cleaning around the catheter’s entry into the urethra are important steps in prevention of urinary tract infections.
- If kidney stones are the predisposing factor to repeated kidney infections, the removal of the stone and preventing future stones from forming may be necessary. These individuals may be referred to a specialist for further evaluation and removal of kidney stones.
- Cranberries and cranberry juice can be beneficial in preventing kidney infections. It is important to note that cranberries may not treat an existing kidney infection, but have been found to be a simple preventive measure in addition to the other measures listed above.
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Health & Wellnesswhy Some Women Get Kidney Infections From Uti And How To Protect Yourself
While treating UTIs at home might not be as easy as having a glass of cranberry juice, the experts say women can stop urinary infections from happening. The most basic way to prevent UTIs is to wipe in the right direction after using the toilet women should always wipe from front to back.
Thats kind of a common sense thing, Greves said. If you wipe from back to front, what if there is fecal material, which has e-coli or other bacteria? They could be introduced to the urinary tract.
Women also might want to urinate after intercourse.
We often tell people that, but theres little specific data, Giugale said, that says that those things are going to prevent urinary tract infection.
However, its another low-risk way to lower the chance of getting a UTI. Urinating after sex might help the body dispel some bacteria moved around during intercourse.
Sometimes there can be e-coli involved in it and the thought is to urinate afterwards, Greves said.
If UTI symptoms dont dissipate after a few days or women notice blood in their urine its time to contact a doctor. Untreated UTIs can become more severe or spread into the kidneys, which might require treatment with intravenous antibiotics.
The ultimate thing is there’s a bacterial infection growing and festering, Greves said, and they need to talk to their doctor to go on some antibiotic and fight this so it doesn’t spread up into the kidney.
Avoid Alcohol And Coffee
The kidneys most important role is to filter out harmful substances and toxins, and both alcohol and caffeine can require extra work from the kidneys. This may hinder the process of healing from an infection. Alcohol and antibiotics also shouldnt be mixed, so avoid alcohol during your treatment for this reason as well.
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Up Your Vitamin C Intake
Theres some scientific evidence that increasing your vitamin C intake can help your body fight off infections, including those in the urinary tract. Thats because vitamin C can increase urine acidity, giving it antibacterial capabilities.
In one study, pregnant women who took 100 mg of vitamin C had less than half the risk of developing a UTI than the control group.
If you want to use vitamin C to treat or prevent a UTI, talk to your provider, who can help you decide how much to supplement. Another way to increase vitamin C intake is by eating foods that are rich in the vitamin, like red peppers, kiwi, and citrus fruits.
If you have a current UTI, citrus fruit and juice may irritate your bladder, so be sure to monitor your symptoms if you decide to up your vitamin C intake.
Home Remedies For A Kidney Infection
You cant DIY a kidney infection away. But home remedies might help stave off some symptoms. Heres the best of the bunch:
- Take OTC pain relievers. These cant cure a kidney infection, but they might relieve discomfort in the short term. Options like acetaminophen can also help bring a fever down.
- Ditch the caffeine and booze. Drinking alcohol or caffeine can make your kidneys work overtime. This extra strain might make it harder for your infection to clear.
- Take a probiotic.Probioticshelp your good bacteria bounce back after a round of antibiotics. Some research also suggests they can help folks with kidney issues.
- Stay uber-hydrated. Youll want to drink lots and lots of fluids to flush out your bladder and urethra as frequently as possible.
- Try apple cider vinegar . Theres no scientific evidence that ACV is the MVP of kidney infections. But some folks like to drink it as a tonic for its antimicrobial properties.
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Home Remedies For Kidney Infection Cure
Kidney infection can lead to a serious health condition and sometimes it can be life-threatening. The doctor gives you heavy doses of antibiotics for a kidney infection.
There are many proven natural home remedies which can help you to cure kidney infection without antibiotic. But if you have severe symptoms of likes fever and sharp pain because of kidney infection then visit your doctor as soon as possible.
Drinking lots of water is a good home remedy for a kidney infection. It can help you to get rid of the infection as well as prevent you from happening again. Drinking lots of water also help to prevent forming a kidney stone.
Water helps to dilute urine and flush out bacteria through urination. We recommend you drink 8-10 glass of water daily. Make sure drinking water should be de-mineralized.
Apple cider vinegar is one of the best home remedies for a kidney infection. Due to the acidic nature of ACV, it helps to kill bacteria which can cause infection.
- Take a tablespoon of ACV and add in one glass of water. Drink this diluted ACV after every three hours.
- You can also mix 2 tablespoons of honey and 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar to a glass of water.
- Drink this home remedy once in a day until you get rid of kidney infection.
Dont Use Feminine Hygiene Sprays Or Douches
Scented products of any sort can irritate vaginal and urethral tissues, including feminine hygiene sprays, body powders, tampons, and sanitary pads. Douches are especially problematic because they strip away beneficial bacteria within the vagina, creating an ideal environment for a bacterial infection.
The downside of using these products was shown in a recent study that appeared in the journal BMC Womens Health. Douches and other types of intimate cleansers were linked with a 3.5 times greater risk of bacterial infection and 2.5 times higher risk of a UTI. The use of intimate wipes was also correlated with a twofold higher risk of developing a UTI.
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We Take Care Of Women
Prothero, a nurse midwife of more than 20 years, said a common misconception about midwives is that they only work with women who do not want to deliver in the hospital.
People think we do at-home births and thats it. Ive heard that my whole career, Prothero said. In fact, Ive never done a home birth. Ive always done hospital births.
Prothero said nurse midwives are also certified as nurse practitioners. They care for women throughout their life span not just women who are pregnant. They can do some primary care, prescribe medication and contraceptives, perform pelvic exams, provide prenatal care such as preconception counseling, deliver babies and even work with postmenopausal women. Midwifery is about giving women options.
Some people think, just from an obstetrics standpoint, if you go with a midwife that you have to go all natural. Thats not true, either. Its your choice. Some women get epidurals, some people dont, but we help find what is best for you and your family, Prothero said.
Kidney Infection Home Remedies
You can do some things at home to feel better while you have an infection:
- Drink plenty of fluids to flush out germs.
- Get extra rest.
- When you go to the bathroom, sit on the toilet instead of squatting over it, which can keep your bladder from completely emptying.
- Take a pain reliever with acetaminophen. Donât use aspirin, ibuprofen, or naproxen because these can raise your risk of kidney problems.
- Use a heating pad on your belly, back, or side.
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What Are The Common Side Effects Of Kidney Infection Medications
Most antibiotics cause gastrointestinal problems including upset stomach, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, and loss of appetite. All antibiotics can cause a serious secondary diarrheal infection due to a bacteria known as Clostridium difficile. The most serious side effects of fluoroquinolones are psychiatric disorders, heart problems, and tendon problems.
Analgesics like acetaminophen are relatively safe when taken as directed. The most common side effects are gastrointestinal: nausea, stomach pain, and loss of appetite. Acetaminophen, however, can be toxic in excess. Acetaminophen overdose damages the liver and could require emergency treatment and hospitalization.
Side effects will vary based on the medication. This is not a complete list, and you should consult with a healthcare professional for possible side effects and drug interactions based on your specific situation.
What Are Other Measures That Help Treat Kidney Infection
In addition to the herbs, spices and fruits, there are other measures that can help treat a kidney infection. However, these are extra measures in addition to the primary treatment of kidney infections. You can use non-aspirin pain relievers to relieve discomfort.
Applying heat: Heat therapy can help relieve the pain caused by kidney infections. Apply a heating pad or hot water bottle to the affected area, and keep it on for about 15-20 minutes at a time .
Maintaining a proper diet: You need to follow a restricted diet if you suffer from a kidney infection. It is recommended not to consume a diet rich in glucose or sugar. The reason being, sugar can make the bacteria develop. You need to avoid foods like biscuits, cakes, chocolates, alcohol, and aerated drinks .
Consume probiotics: Probiotics are essential in the management of kidney infections. They help keep your body’s healthy bacteria in check and assist the kidneys in processing waste materials. Consuming probiotics such as kefir, yoghurt, sauerkraut etc. can improve the effectiveness of infection healing as well .
Maintaining proper hygiene: Proper hygiene is necessary to treat kidney infections. This will keep off several infections in the kidney, bladder and urethra. Patients with an infection should also maintain proper hygiene to prevent the spreading of harmful bacteria to the other parts of the body .
Note: However, do not force yourself to urinate.
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Always Wipe From Front To Back
After urinating, reach behind your buttocks and wipe from the front of the vagina to the back. When you are finished, take a separate piece of toilet paper to clean the anus, starting at the perineum and wiping back between your buttocks. Doing so prevents introducing bacteria from the anus to the vagina.