9 Great Natural Remedies for Kidney Infections
Kidney infections are usually caused by cystitis, which is an unpleasant, but common infection of the bladder. Occasionally, bacteria can travel from the bladder into one or two kidneys. We should stress that these remedies should not be in place of antibiotics and if you are concerned that you have a kidney infection, it is always advisable to see your GP; however, natural remedies can be great at relieving some of the pain and symptoms that are associated with them.
Sometimes the symptoms of a kidney infection can come on within a few hours, and you might start to feel feverish, shivery, sick, and have a pain in your back or side. There are other symptoms often associated with a kidney infection as well, which include; needing to pee suddenly, or more than usual; a pain or burning sensation when you do pee; smelly or cloudy pee; or blood in your pee. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms it is important to make an appointment to see your GP, where they will be able to test you for a kidney infection.
However; there are also some natural home remedies that you can try alongside your doctor’s advice, to help the symptoms and pain improve.
Drink plenty of water
Ensuring that you are drinking plenty of water is the first and easiest thing that you can be doing at home to help yourself. This will help to flush the nasty bacteria from your body, which will help the infection to be eliminated much quicker.
Staying hydrated can also help to prevent the urinary tract infections that can then lead to kidney infections, so if you are prone to them, this is definitely something that you should be trying to do. Aim to drink at least eight glasses of fluids every day.
Drink cranberry juice
You might think that this is an old wives tale, but there is a reason that cranberry juice has long been used as a remedy for UTI’s and kidney infections, and that it because it really works. Evidence suggests as well, that drinking cranberry juice on a regular basis could actually help to prevent the onset of infections in some people.
Often, those with kidney infections will prefer the taste of cranberry juice compared to plain water, which in turn will help people to drink more. But, be aware that often, cranberry juices are full of artificial sweeteners, which are not good for you, so if you are thinking of using cranberry as a longer-term solution, opt for a cranberry supplement, which is a healthier way for you to get the benefits of cranberries.
Avoid alcohol and coffee
This one really comes as no surprise when you consider what the kidneys do. Their most important role is to actually filter out harmful substances, and toxins and alcohol and caffeine require more work from the kidneys, which can affect the healing process.
It should be noted as well that alcohol and antibiotics should not really be missed so it is much better to avoid them during treatment anyway.
There are a number of benefits to taking probiotics, especially when it comes to treating kidney infections. They will keep your body’s healthy bacteria in check, even if the antibiotics that you are taking get rid of both good and bad bacteria.
On top of this, there is evidence to suggest that the probiotics can assist the kidneys in processing the waste materials, which will make your kidneys function better, making any treatment you are receiving more effective.
Vitamin C is a really powerful antioxidant and is particularly good at promoting kidney health. Previous, older research also suggests that vitamin C can also help to prevent kidney scarring during an acute kidney infection and boost the enzymes within the kidneys.
You can easily get more vitamin C into your diet, either by taking a daily supplement or by eating plenty of fruit and vegetables that are all dense in the nutrient.
Parsley juice is not only packed full of nutrients but is a natural diuretic which can increase the amount you go for a pee, which, as we already know is a really great way to flush out any bacteria that you might have harboured in your kidneys, which can then make antibiotics even more effective.
Parsley can be quite an acquired taste though, so if it is not for you, try mixing it into a smoothie with some strongly flavoured fruits to mask the taste. Make sure the fruit you are using is rich in vitamin C as well, for an extra boost.
Eat plenty of apples, and drink apple juice
Apples are really packed full of nutrients making them really good for you. They are very acidic as well, which can help the kidneys to maintain acidity in the urine, which could prevent the further growth of harmful bacteria.
They also have really great natural anti-inflammatory properties, which is vital in helping the kidneys to heal again after the infection has been treated.
Take a bath filled with Epsom salts
There is no denying that kidney infections are painful, and taking a nice relaxing bath filled with Epsom salts will help to relax you and to ease the pain. Although this will not help to treat the infection, it will help to make it all tolerable whilst the antibiotics take effect.
Continuing your Epsom salts bath after the initial pain from the infection has gone could help to relieve the abdominal pain that is sometimes paired with antibiotics.
Finally, apply heat
In the same way that the bath will help to relieve any pain that is associated with a kidney infection, using a heat pad or a hot water bottle will allow you to be a bit more direct with your pain relief, again whilst you wait for the antibiotics to kick in.
Apply your chosen heat source to the affected area, and keep it on there for approximately 20 minutes at a time in order to get some relief.