As you already know, kidneys are extremely important to your general health. However, the symptoms of their malfunction are not always visible and recognizable, which may lead to a late discovery of the malfunction – when it’s already too late. That’s why it’s vital to recognize the signs that the body is giving you and to interpret them in the right way so that you can save your kidneys before it’s too late.
In this article, you’ll get to learn about 8 early warning signs your body is giving you that could possibly mean that there’s something wrong with your kidneys. If you’ve already experienced some of them, then this would be the perfect time to visit the doctor.
1. Swollen Feet, Ankles, Face, Or Any Other Body Part
If your body is retaining fluids then it’s signalizing you that there’s something going on with its excretory system. The main role of the kidneys in your body is water regulation and if these organs are not functioning properly, fluids can build up in your tissues. Usually, the swelling appears in the feet, ankles, hands, or face.
2. Changes In Your Urine
Pay attention to your urine – its color, frequency, smell. These things can tell you a lot about the functioning of your kidneys. After all, the urine is a result of the kidneys’ work, so it’s best to start there. If you experience some of the following changes, then you might have a kidney problem:
- Difficulties in urination
- Blood in your urine
- Less frequent urination and dark color
- An increase in urine output and a lighter color
- Foamy or bubbly urine
- Waking up several times at night with strong urge to urinate
3. Nausea And Vomiting
If your kidneys are letting ‘trash’ pile up in your body, then of course you’d be feeling nauseated. Your body will feel the urge to get rid of the poisons and its way of showing you the sign is nausea. Vomiting is the only way the body knows how to get rid of something if the organ responsible for it is not functioning properly.
4. Tiredness Throughout The Day
We all feel tired at some point during the day, it’s really nothing out of the ordinary – maybe you didn’t get enough sleep, ate the wrong food, or anything else really. But sometimes a fatigue is more than the ordinary tiredness we’ve all experienced. Sometimes the fatigue is due to a lack of a hormone called erythropoietin, which stimulates the production of red blood cells. As you may or may not know, red blood cells carry energizing oxygen to cells throughout your whole body later on.
If your kidneys are stressed, then they don’t produce enough of this hormone, thereby reducing the number of red blood cells and making you feel weak and tired.
5. Pain In Your Legs
If there’s something wrong with your kidneys, then you might experience leg pain. But not just any kind of leg pain – you’re gonna feel it in the back of your legs, maybe even lower back. Usually, it’s in the form of muscle tightness, but it might be a significant pain as well, depending on the kidneys deterioration stage.
Kidney stones are the ones guilty for any severe pain, usually in the back. But kidney stones aren’t the only ones that can cause the pain. Pain can also mean that you have a kidney infection, which may be accompanied by a bladder infection too. Cysts are also the cause in some cases and they can be quite painful as well.
6. A Bad Taste In Your Mouth
If you’re experiencing a sort of metallic taste in your mouth and have a bad breath, then your kidneys might be the ones to blame for that. You see, when your kidneys are not getting rid of the toxins, they carry on accumulating in your body, and might as well end up in your mouth. This can also lower your appetite, which in turn can cause weight loss and not the healthy type.
7. Rashes That Itch
Uric acid and waste buildups can result in itchy patches on your skin. Rashes can be caused by many factors and are extremely vague, but the ones caused by a kidney malfunction feel “deeper.” Superficial treatment doesn’t help much because the itch feels like it comes from underneath the skin. These rashes may manifest as little red bumps if it’s easier for you to recognize them like that.
Let’s remind ourselves again: What is the kidney’s main function? To produce red blood cell-stimulating EPO. If your body lacks EPO, it can’t make enough red blood cells. Hence, anemia. Anemia can be recognized by many symptoms, such as: feeling winded and out of breath, feeling chilly even if the weather is warm, feeling dizzy, etc. The main cause of these symptoms is a systemic lack of oxygen, which gets delivered by the red blood cells.
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