Your kidneys are an essential part of having a healthy body. When they fail, it can be devastating. Kidney dialysis helps your body bridge the gap if your kidney health is compromised. Some people believe kidney dialysis means that their health can only deteriorate and not improve. But you can still lead a healthy, active lifestyle when on dialysis.
If you’re wondering about kidney dialysis and what it involves, here is what you can expect.
Your kidneys are part of your body’s urinary system. Kidneys help rid the body of toxins, return nutrient-rich blood to the bloodstream, and help regulate blood pressure. Vital bodily functions are compromised if your kidneys fail, making dialysis necessary.
There are two different types of kidney failure patients can experience. Acute kidney failure is the sudden onset of compromised kidney function. It can be caused by:
- An illness
- High blood pressure
- A severe injury
Acute kidney failure also has a chance of being reversed, but it requires immediate intervention to be possible.
Chronic kidney failure progresses slowly over time and can lead to permanent kidney failure.
Living With Dialysis
The reality of having to live with dialysis can be frightening and overwhelming.
But, living a productive and fulfilling life is still possible with dialysis. One of the crucial first steps to living a quality life while on dialysis is allowing yourself to experience the whirlwind emotions you may feel. There may be days when your emotions fluctuate. Many people experience the ups and downs that come with dialysis treatment. With time, you can adjust and make the necessary accommodations.
Also, gather information and ask as many questions as needed before starting treatment. Asking lots of questions and doing plenty of research to inform yourself can help ease your mind. The uncertainty of a diagnosis can be stressful, but you can take control of the situation by staying informed.
As part of your adjustment, dialysis treatment also requires several other lifestyle changes, which can include.
- Diet changes
- Getting more exercise
- Dialysis medication
- Stress management
Is Dialysis Painful?
Some people are afraid that dialysis is an agonizingly painful process. While dialysis sessions take a few hours to complete three times each week, it’s generally painless.
There are minor side effects that can happen from a drop in blood pressure, such as headaches, vomiting, or bloating.
If you have questions and would like to learn more about dialysis treatments, contact us at the Metropolitan Vascular Institute. Call our Waldorf office at (301) 374-8540 to schedule a consultation.