Urine is normally pale yellow to dark amber in colour and is also flat. A variety of factors, from diet to drugs to disease, can cause changes in the color and foaminess of your urine.
If your urine looks foamy, it could be because your bladder is full and the urine is hitting the toilet fast enough to stir up the water. But conditions that could also cause foamy urine are causes to see your doctor about.
Find out what makes your urine foam up and what you should do about it if it happens.
There are many causes which contribute to bubbles in urine. At times, in some cases, it’s so harmless that they pass on its own. But there are some cases which call for medical intervention.
Bubbles in urine or foamy urine are normal. Unless you see any changes or experience another set of symptoms, foamy urine is not something to lose your sleep on.
Urine can foam up briefly every once in a while. This is usually due to the speed of urine flow.
Foamy urine is more likely to be a sign of disease if it happens often or it gets worse over time.
If your urine is foamy, look for other symptoms as well. These symptoms could be clues that a medical condition is causing the problem:
- swelling in your hands, feet, face, and abdomen, which could be a sign of fluid buildup from damaged kidneys
- a loss of appetite
- trouble sleeping
- changes in the amount of urine you produce
- cloudy urine
- darker coloured urine
- if you’re a male, dry orgasms or releasing little to no semen during orgasm
- if you’re a male, infertility or having difficulty getting a female partner pregnant
Normal Foamy Urine
You will let a sigh of relief when you read this:
Rapid Urination: Passing urine frequently or forcing it to come out is responsible for the foamy urine. That’s because, the air gets introduced into the urine stream, leading to the formation of bubbles. In such a case, the bubble or foam disappears within a few minutes.
Concentrated Urine: If you have mild dehydration, then your urine will appear bubbly. That’s because it becomes more concentrated in nature. You just need to drink more fluids to get relief.
Toilet Cleaner: At times, urine reacts with toilet cleaner, resulting in bubbles. To test or confirm the situation (whether it’s ‘positive’ or ‘negative’) urinate in a separate container (which has not been treated with the toilet leaner) and watch for bubbles.
Semen in Urine: After sexual intercourse, some amount of semen is left in the male urethra (which carries semen and urine).
Now, this small amount won’t cause bubbly urine, unless the bladder sphincter (muscles which are used to control the exit of urine in the urinary bladder) malfunctions, which causes the semen to go back into the bladder. In such a case, urine will appear bubbly.
Dehydration: When you deprive your body of adequate water, it can lead to foamy urine.
Stress: Don’t be bogged down with stressful situations at work, home or elsewhere. It will most probably reflect in foamy urine.
Abnormal Foamy Urine
This one is a cause of concern.
Proteinuria: This happens when proteins get released in the urine, not in small but in high amounts. This makes the urine appear bubbly.
Proteinuria is a sign of a looming kidney problem. But why? Because the kidneys are not filtering urine properly (in the way they should). As a result of which, they release an excess of protein.
Pregnancy: Preeclampsia is a pregnancy condition (complication to be precise) which leads to the following problems – proteinuria, swollen legs, high BP, and headaches. It can be fatal for both mother and foetus.
Urinary Tract Infection: A common ailment in ladies, in particular, urinary tract infection (UTI) happens when bacteria enter into any part of the urinary tract system.
You not only experience pain in the case of UTI, but you also get frequent urge to pass urine and burning sensation while urinating.
Vesicocolic Fistula: You know what ‘fistula’ is? An abnormal connection which, in this case, develops between the urinary bladder and the colon.
This makes gas, air, and bacteria to travel into the bladder. Apart from bubbly urine, a person with vesicocolic fistula will have a frequent infection.
Kidney Problem: Foamy urine can be a sign of kidney problems cropping up from kidney stones or diabetes. A simple urine test will confirm whether you have kidney disease.
Diabetes: Another cause of bubbly or foamy urine.
Heart (cardiovascular) disease: Ditto as mentioned above in the point on diabetes.
Scary situation, not? It is always best to be aware of necessary precautions (to be on the safer side)…so do know the Dos and Dont’s.
What Is The Cure For Foamy Urine?
Some of these measures can help you deal with foamy urine:
- Limit your salt intake. Excess of Salt can turn out to be your enemy.
- Drink water (plenty of water) but PLEASE AVOID soda. Alcoholics, this tip is for you. Also, minimise your alcohol consumption.
- Maintaining a healthy weight is a must. Are you overweight or obese? Then, you need to lose weight ASAP.
- Cut down on stress levels. It’s not going to get you anywhere, except land you in a severe health problem.
- Substitute red meats with lean meats. That’s because red meats are harder to break down.
- Exercise regularly. Fitness efforts will always take your body in the right direction.
- Take low-sodium foods so that you can avoid canned veggies, processed meat, snacks like nuts, BBQ etc.
- Reduce your protein intake. Foamy urine signifies protein in the urine. And an excess of protein means your kidneys will have to work double-time (in short – harder than ever before) to discharge protein waste from your body. Think twice before eating foods rich in proteins like fish, chicken.
- Avoid sitting down on public toilets (this one is for the ladies more as much as men) as much as you can. If you have to sit down, then do make sure that the toilet seat has been properly disinfected before using it.
- Avoid washing your intimate areas with force. Such actions, if done so, destroy and hamper the natural flora of the private parts and leave the genital area exposed to excessive growth of bacteria.
When Should I Be Worried About Foamy Urine?
It is advisable to reach out to your health care provider when you notice the cloudy or murky colour of your urine for several days (despite the home remedies you have practised to undo the foaminess of urine).
It’s wise not to ignore medical problems like sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) or kidney problems.
After all, they won’t go away on their own so easily and need medical attention. A proper ‘urinalysis’ taken at a professional medical lab or doctor’s office can help diagnose potential medical conditions accurately.
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