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Symptoms Of Kidney Infection - Understanding the Symptoms of Kidney Infection

who is at risk? what are the symptoms? common treatments

Your kidneys are one of the most important organs in your body. Their main function is to clean your blood of waste products by filtering out harmful substances as your blood circulates through the sponge-like organ. The kidneys also regulate electrolyte levels, giving you the energy and minerals you need for healthy living and boosting your immune system. Your kidneys are considered part of your urinary system, as they are directly above the bladder and filter this waste. While kidneys usually work normally, they can become infected. There are several common symptoms of kidney infection and ways to recognize whether you are having a problem.

What is a Urinary Tract Infection?

Many adults are familiar with a urinary tract infection. If the bladder or urethra is inflamed, it can cause painful urination, as well as discomfort and tenderness in the abdominal area. This is commonly referred to as a urinary tract system, but doctors actually refer to this as a lower urinary tract infection. This mainly affects the bladder and urethra. Kidney infections are referred to as upper urinary tract infections. If you aren’t familiar with either type and don’t know the symptoms of kidney infection, you may confuse the two types of UTIs.

Who is at Risk?

Anybody can get a urinary tract or kidney infection. However, females are more susceptible to the symptoms of kidney infection. Most incidences of the issue are due to the introduction of bacteria from the outside of the body to the urinary tract. This bacteria travels up the urethra and can settle in the kidneys, where it grows and reproduces. Because of the anatomy of the female body, it is easier for bacteria to breach the protective mechanisms of the body and enter the urinary system. In a woman, the urethra is not as long, and it takes less for the bacteria to travel to the inside of the body. However, men can also experience symptoms of kidney infection, so it’s important not to negate the possibility if the symptoms of kidney infection are present.

What are the Symptoms?

The main symptom of kidney infection is the sensation that you will notice when you urinate. Urination can be accompanied by tingling, stinging and burning sensations. However, if this is the only one of the symptoms of kidney infection you experience, it is more likely that you have a lower urinary tract infection, or bladder infection. Kidney infections are also often accompanied by abdominal pain or pain in the sides or mid-back, the area where the kidneys are located. If the infection become more serious, a temperature is common, as well as chills. Some patients even get sick to their stomach, experiencing mild to severe nausea.

Doctors use all of these common symptoms of kidney infection to determine whether you are suffering from this condition. They are especially careful with older people, who can also exhibit seemingly unrelated symptoms such as dehydration, decreased blood pressure and irregular heart rates. However, to determine for certain that a kidney infection is the culprit, a urine sample is needed. This will reveal the presence of bacteria in the urine stream, providing a firm diagnosis in partnership with the physical symptoms of kidney infection.

Common Treatments

Because kidney infections are caused by bacteria, the most common treatment is an antibiotic. The earlier this treatment is started, the quicker the symptoms of kidney infection can be reversed and eliminated. If the type of bacteria that is the culprit is unknown, a general antibiotic is likely to be prescribed. If the doctor has more information about the pathogen in your body, something more specific can be used. In addition to antibiotics, it is important to drink a lot of water to keep the kidneys flushed and move the bacteria out of the body. Natural practitioners also recommend things like cranberry juice, proven to flush out bacteria. Some infections become so bad that hospitalization is necessary. Even in that setting, however, the treatment plan is still mainly antibiotics and fluids.

While most kidney infections are relatively routine, they can be uncomfortable and annoying. In order to avoid familiarity with the symptoms of kidney infection, it’s best to use preventative measures. The most important thing is to keep the area clean so that bacteria have a lower chance of entering the urinary tract and taking hold.

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