The 12th of March every year is observed as ‘World Kidney Day’, which is dedicated to campaigning for the importance of the kidneys.
It is also aimed at reducing the frequency and impact of kidney disease and its associated health problems worldwide.
The theme for 2020 is – ‘Kidney Health for Everyone Everywhere’.
25 million Nigerians have kidney disease according to the President of the Nigerian Association of Nephrology (NAN), Ifeoma Ulasi, a worrisome number which calls for more attention to the kidney.
Kidney disease refers to the injury or damage to the kidneys that has usually been on for a long time.
Also known as Chronic kidney disease or CKD, it is a progressive condition that reduces kidney function (basically its ability to filter waste from the blood).
Kidney disease often has no symptoms in its early stages and can easily go undetected in most people until it is in its advanced stages.
One of the obvious symptoms of Kidney disease is Fatigue. A decrease in red blood cells to carry oxygen make your muscles and brain get tired quickly and more frequently which can lead to anemia.
2.Urge to urinate more frequently
You may have the urge to urinate more frequently especially at night. This is caused by the kidney filters which are damaged.
3. Loss of Appetite
Loss of appetite is another symptom of kidney disease.A build-up of wastes in the blood (called uremia) can make food taste different and cause bad breath.
4. Swollen face, hands, ankles, and feet
Kidney disease causes puffiness around the eye because the kidney is releasing a large amount of protein into the urine.
Failing kidneys don’t remove extra fluid, which builds up in your body causing swelling in the legs, ankles, feet, and/or hands.
5. Foamy Urine
Kidneys are responsible for urine hence excessive bubbles in the urine – especially those that require you to flush several times before they go away—indicate protein in the urine.
6. Dry Itchy Skin
Kidneys remove wastes from the bloodstream. When the kidneys fail, the build-up of wastes in your blood can cause severe itching.
7.Lack of concentration
Anemia related to kidney failure means that your brain is not getting enough oxygen. This can lead to memory problems or trouble with concentration.
8. Always feeling cold
If you notice you always feel cold even when in a hot or warm environment, that could be an indication that you have kidney disease.
Healthy kidneys typically keep the blood cells in the body when filtering wastes from the blood to create urine, but when the kidney’s filters have been damaged, these blood cells can start to “leak” out into the urine. Blood in the urine can also be indicative of tumors, kidney stones or an infection.
10. Difficulty breathing