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Six Causes of Cloudy Urine

Is your urine more cloudy than normal? Find out six things that could be causing this problem.

Does your urine look cloudier than usual? Urine is normally clear and when it becomes cloudy, it’s important to find out why – particularly if the problem is a persistent one. Fortunately, not all causes of cloudy urine are serious. Here are some of the most common reasons your urine can become cloudy.  

Dehydration

It’s not uncommon for the urine to appear cloudy on hot summer days when you’re not drinking enough water. The cause is simple dehydration which also makes the urine look darker and more concentrated in appearance. Try increasing your water intake and if the cloudiness doesn’t go away, see your doctor.

Medications and Vitamins

Certain vitamins are water-soluble – meaning they’re excreted in the urine. If you’re taking high doses of B vitamins or vitamin C which are water soluble, it can cause the urine to look cloudy. Likewise, certain medications can do the same thing. Even drinking large amounts of milk can cause urine cloudiness due to the presence of phosphates in the milk.

Infection

A urinary tract infection is one of the most common causes of cloudy urine. The cloudiness usually comes from white blood cells that enter the urine to fight off the infection. If cloudy urine comes from an infection, there will usually be other symptoms such as frequent or painful urination, abdominal discomfort, flank pain, fever, or nausea – but not always. If cloudy urine is persistent, it’s important to see your doctor who can determine if you have a urinary tract infection.

Kidney Stones

Kidney stones can also cause urine cloudiness. When kidney stones are present, red blood cells enter the urine – giving it a murky, cloudy appearance. Other symptoms of kidney stones include back, groin, or abdominal pain and nausea. Kidney stones may be present without symptoms if the stone isn’t actively moving through the urinary tract.

Other Infections

In women, a vaginal or cervical infection can cause the urine to look cloudy due to white blood cells that leak into the urine from the vagina. A prostate infection in men can do the same thing.

Kidney Disease

Kidney disease can cause the urine to become cloudy from the presence of protein in the urine. A urinalysis is a good way to screen for urine protein.

The Bottom Line?

Cloudy urine can come from something as simple as dehydration to something as serious as kidney disease. The best way to find the exact cause is to see your doctor for a urinalysis if the cloudiness doesn’t go away after drinking more water.

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