How to tell the difference between kidney infection symptoms and bladder infection symptoms.

Kidney infection symptoms: Burning on urination, check. Needing to pee a lot, check. Blood in urine, check. Cloudy urine, check.

If the symptoms of bladder and kidney infections are so similar how are you supposed to tell them apart?

Why it is important to know what you are dealing with

While bladder infections are painful, annoying and generally not something you want to experience, they are not usually described as dangerous to your overall health.

However kidney infection symptoms are often remarkably similar to those experienced in a bladder infection and a kidney infection can be dangerous or even fatal. Kidney infections while pregnant can be very bad for both mother and baby, including increased risk for a pre term labour.

Kidney Infection Symptoms

Kidney infection symptoms include the painful urination, tinge of blood in urine and foul smelling urine that often accompanies a bladder infection. Urination is apparently even more painful than in a bladder infection when it is a kidney infection symptom.

These symptoms which are common between these two infections is why it is sometimes hard for people to tell the difference. Kidney infection symptoms also include some other things to look for to help distinguish between the two.

  • Pain in Lower Back or Side
  • Fatigue
  • Fever
  • Loss of appetite

Kidney infection symptoms can often be mistaken for a bladder infection or even a flu, so it is important to keep an eye on it if you are experiencing a lot of these symptoms. Sometimes kidney infections can also show up without the usual bladder infection like symptoms, which is why it is all just sounds scary!

I have had bladder infections that have had me feverish, tired and with awful pains through my abdomen and feeling like that, well, is it any wonder I lost my appetite. However I do not think that any of these ever progressed to a kidney infection, or at least I was never treated for one.

A doctor will be able to tell you for sure if you are suffering from a kidney infection but I think that kidney infections are one of the reasons that it is so important to get onto treating a bladder infection fast.

How a kidney infection happens

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Diagram of kidneys and urinary tract system
The urinary system

The urinary systems is made up of urethra, bladder, kidneys and ureters. It makes sense that any infection that occurs in one could easily move to other areas of this system.

Bladder infections are more common than kidney infections as they are closer to the opening of the body, through the pee hole. This entry to the body, leaves the bladder open to bacteria and fungi getting in and wreaking havoc.

Kidney infections are often the result of an untreated or unresolved bladder infection, where the infection has travelled upwards and made things much worse.

This is one of the reasons it is important to treat a bladder infection quickly.

Untreated bladder infections that just seem to go on and on, not only make you feel awful but can leave your whole urinary system susceptible to a more serious kidney infection. As it is so difficult to tell the difference between the two infections, it makes it doubly important to get rid of the infection as quickly as you can. Apart from that - who wants to spend all their time running to the bathroom in agony!

For some people this is the reason that they recommend getting antibiotics every time they experience a bladder infection. Antibiotics are an almost sure fire way of getting rid of bladder and kidney infections.

However in my experience, I feel that antibiotics have caused more problems for me than they have fixed. Read more about my experience with antibiotics here.

Antibiotics for bladder infections
I no longer use antibiotics if I can help it

It is essential to treat a bladder infection and not just leave it. Where at all possible I aim to use natural products in all parts of my life. This is especially true for bladder infection treatments.

When using natural treatments for bladder infections, I like to make sure that it is working quickly. I am not feeling significantly better within a couple of hours, if not completely better then I will look for another treatment that will work. There are so many natural, safe alternatives for treating bladder infections that it is worth trying a few to make sure you get the results you are after.

Kidney infection symptoms are so similar to bladder infections that is really difficult to tell them apart, the safest course of action is to treat any infection quickly and properly. If any symptoms are lingering then you are not cured and it is best to find another treatment.

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