Kidney Stones in the Summertime
May 2, 2014
It’s that time of year again, when Central Texas’ mild spring gives way to the heat of summer. Along with swimming, ice cream and sunshine, summer in Central Texas also means kidney stone season. Because of our heat, which leads to increased sweat and dehydration, along with increased levels of minerals in our water, our region is part of what’s know as the “stone belt.” And when summer comes, those factors lead to a rise in kidney stones.
Kidney stones are calcifications that form in the urine. They’re made in the kidney when urine has a high concentration of elements like calcium, sodium, and oxalate. Once a stone is made, it can remain and grow in the kidney for a long period of time (months to years even). Once a stone is in the kidney, it can fall unannounced, an event that’s very painful.
So what’s a Texan to do? First of all, hydrate. But don’t reach for sports drinks or sodas – those contain sugar, sodium, and caffeine, which can increase your risk for developing kidney stones. Instead drink plenty of water. Limiting the amount of fast food in your diet also helps, as does exercising.
Even when summer finally comes to an end, these are healthy habits to keep in mind. Kidney stones are on the rise in the U.S. in general, in a large part because of poor dietary habits and rising rates of obesity. So eating well and getting plenty of activity will not only improve your overall health, it will help you avoid painful kidney stones.
Please call to schedule an appointment for preventative/follow-up care: 512-694-8888