Kidney stones develop when certain substances build up in the urine and cannot pass through the urinary system properly. Minerals including uric acid, sodium and calcium are normally present in your urine and pass through without a problem. But if the urine becomes too concentered, the minerals can crystallize and form a small, hard stone that cannot pass through the tube that carries urine to the bladder.
The reason kidney stones develop is not always known. They may occur if your urine is highly acidic or too alkalotic and if you don’t drink enough water.
There are a few main types of kidney stones. Most kidney stones are formed from calcium oxalate. Some stones are also comprised of uric acid. Less frequently, kidney stones may be formed from struvite or cystine.
According to the National Kidney Foundation, about ten to 15 percent of the population will suffer from kidney stones at some point in their life. Of those who develop kidney stones, about 70 percent will have a reoccurrence.
Kidney stones are said to be one of the most painful conditions a person can suffer from. Symptoms often include severe pain in the back, ribs or sides of the abdomen. Pain usually comes in waves, with each bout lasting about a minute. The pain can be so severe it causes the person to double over. Nausea, vomiting and pain with urination may also be present. Urine will typically be cloudy and foul smelling. Some people also develop chills and fever.
When a stone is large enough, the flow of urine is blocked, and the tissue above the stone becomes distended, which is why the pain can be so severe. If you develop a kidney stone, you want fast relief. You also want to prevent future stones from forming. There are several natural remedies you can use, which may effectively treat stones. Consider some of those listed below.
1. Dandelion Root
Dandelion root is a herb, which has been used for centuries to treat various conditions. It can be used to help dissolve kidney stones and prevent additional stones from forming. It works as a diuretic, which means it increases urination and allows the stone to be eliminated. To use, add two teaspoons of dandelion root to a cup of boiling water and let it steep for about ten minutes before drinking. For an even better effect, consider combining the dandelion root with gravel root. The mixture may also help soften the stone so that it can pass easier. Drinking dandelion root tea daily may also help prevent the formation of future stones.
2. Dietary changes
What you eat and drink can play a role in how likely you are to develop kidney stones. But the good news is, it’s something you can control. Dietary changes will not cure a current kidney stone, but they can prevent future stones from forming. Although it can be difficult to make and stick with certain dietary changes, the thought of preventing the pain associated with kidney stones may be motivation enough. Consider decreasing salt and animal protein. Although you may not have to eliminate all red meat, you may want to limit it to a few servings a week or opt for smaller portions. Avoid high oxalate foods including chocolate, wheat, peppers and rhubarb.