Crystals in Urine

Urine is made of water and certain chemical compounds produced by the body in the form of waste materials. Kidneys are the organ that filters the waste products from the blood and separates urine sending it to urethra. However there are occasions when urine contains traces of crystals. If you check the urine of a healthy individual there may be only few crystals. The presence of large number of crystals in urine indicates underlying health problems. Crystals are formed in urine due to number of factors like dehydration, change in pH value, and urinary tract infection. It can be due to formation of kidney stones. By making few changes in your diet you can easily avoid crystals in urine.

Symptoms :

There are no concrete symptoms or signs to know that your urine contains crystals in it. You need to monitor the color of urine. Any change in color can be due to presence of crystals in urine. The right way to check for crystals is by doing regular urine test in the laboratory.

If there is any change in urine color and texture, then you need to consult your doctor.

Causes :

There is nothing to worry about if the result of urine test shows few crystals in it. There is a problem only if the number of crystals exceeds normal level.

Dehydration

If the body becomes dehydrated (lack of water) it may give rise to crystal formation in urine. When the total water consumption gets reduced obviously the urine may include increased solid particles or crystals. Certain chemical components present in the urine like nitrogen and uric acid may get solidified resulting in the development of crystals in urine. Dehydration is the major cause for the presence of urine crystals in children who don’t take enough water.

PH value changes

Change in pH value of the urine may trigger crystal formation in urine. pH value is the scale to assess whether particular compound is acidic or alkaline. Normally the pH value of urine will be less than 7 indicating its acidic nature. But when it exceeds the value of 7, it becomes alkaline leading to the formation of calcium oxalate crystals. The pH value of the urine gets changed due to number of factors.

Urinary Tract Infection

Any type of infection in the urinary tract can lead to formation of crystals in urine. Very often bacteria cause UTI which would eventually alter the pH value of urine making it highly acidic.

Kidney and bladder stone

Crystals in urine are detected when bladder stones are formed in your body. Urolithiasis (bladder stones) is one of the causes for the presence of crystals in urine. Taking high protein diet can also cause crystals. You can see this effect clearly in dogs that takes protein rich diet regularly. Protein would certainly increase the acidic content in urine which may lead to formation of crystals.

The presence of large number of crystals in urine is not the only factor to conclude that the body contains kidney stones or bladder stones. However this would put you under the risk of getting kidney stones later.

Diagnoses :

Urine culture is done to check the presence of crystals in urine.

Treatment :

Your doctor will find the root cause for urine crystals before giving any treatment.You can make few changes your diet routine for managing the right pH value of urine. Taking oxalate rich foods like beer, chocolate, coffee, peanuts, spinach and sweet potatoes can increase the acidity in urine.

Similarly monitor the amount of protein in your food. It is not good to eat protein rich foods on regular basis. The foods that contain high purine content like organ meat, sardines and anchovies should be reduced. Instead you can include foods like ham, chicken, beef, bacon, lentils, beans, cauliflower and salmon can be taken.

Reduce the amount of salty foods like chips, fried items, fast foods and pickles from your food since it can increase the calcium content in urine making it more acidic.

You should at least 8 glasses of water per day to avoid crystals in urine.

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