From Prevention to Detection and Equitable Access to Care
Worldwide, over 850 million people suffer from kidney diseases. The fact that this number is roughly double the number of people who live with diabetes and 20 times more than cancer prevalence worldwide, is alarming and more needs to be done.
World Kidney Day is a significant day on the world health calendar as it is aimed at raising awareness on the importance of the kidneys to overall health and on reducing the frequency and impact of kidney disease and associated health problems worldwide.
This year’s theme is a continuation of the 2019 campaign dubbed “Kidney Health for Everyone Everywhere – from Prevention to Detection and Equitable Access to Care.” The campaign focuses on the increasing burden of kidney diseases worldwide and striving for kidney health for everyone, everywhere.
The campaign highlights the importance of preventive interventions to avert the onset and progression of kidney disease.
Objectives of this campaign include:
- Highlighting diabetes and high blood pressure being key risk factors for chronic kidney disease (CKD),
- Encouraging preventive behaviours,
- Educating healthcare professionals about their key role in detecting and reducing the risk of CKD, especially in high-risk populations,
- Encouraging systematic screening of all patients with diabetes and hypertension for CKD,
- Encouraging transplantation as a best-outcome option for kidney failure, and the act of organ donation as a life-saving initiative, and
- Emphasizing the important role of local and national health authorities in controlling the CKD epidemic.
What can you do for your Kidney?
Kidney disease is often referred to as the silent killer because it develops over time and the majority of people who develop this disease are not aware, they have it until it is in the later stages. Although diabetes and high blood pressure are the leading causes of kidney disease and kidney failure, there are several other risk factors that increase the chance of developing kidney problems.
How to reduce Kidney Disease Risk
- Eating healthy: TA healthy diet helps to maintain an ideal body weight, reduce blood pressure, prevent diseases like heart disease and diabetes which increase kidney disease risk and other health conditions like chronic kidney disease.
Eat foods rich in fibre, take at least two servings of fruits daily and lots of water. Aside from eating healthy foods, you also need to check on your salt intake by eating food that you prepare yourself and not adding salt to already cooked food.
- Control your blood sugar and blood pressure: A significant number of people living with diabetes do not know they have diabetes. It is, therefore, crucial to have your blood sugar level and your blood pressure checked as part of your general body check-up especially for people approaching middle-age or older.
While you go through a general body check-up you should also get your kidney function checked.
- Keep Fit: Exercising can help reduce the risk of several health conditions including kidney disease. When you exercise, you work on maintaining a healthy body weight and reducing your blood pressure. 30 minutes of moderate intensity exercises at least 5 days a week is recommended.
- Take plenty of fluids: IEnsure you take at least 2 litres of water daily. However, this quantity may vary depending on the following factors: exercise, health conditions, pregnancy and breastfeeding. People with kidney or liver failure may need to adjust their water intake.
- Avoid over-the-counter medicines: Over-the-counter drugs such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory pain/killers can harm the kidneys. Ensure you check with your doctor or pharmacist before getting any medicine.
- Do not Smoke: Smoking slows blood flow to the kidneys and that decreases kidney function increasing the risk of kidney disease and kidney cancer.
If you or your loved one needs treatment for kidney disease, kidney failure or kidney cancer, International Medical Treatment Ltd (IMT) is here to help you find high quality treatment at our partner hospitals around the world. Our partner hospitals focus on providing exceptional services to all patients. The hospitals offer a variety of medical services for treatment of kidney conditions including kidney transplants.