It is estimated that, in the United States, about 10-15 percent of adults will be diagnosed with a kidney stone sometime in their lifetime. Roughly 1 million Americans develop kidney stones each year. Once you have had one kidney stone attack, your chance of recurrence is about 70 to 80 percent.
Kidney stones can range in size from a grain of sand to larger than a golf ball. Ninety percent of all kidney stones will pass on their own without medical aid, however if a stone fails to pass, permanent damage to your urinary tract can result.
Kidney stones form when the minerals and acid salts in your urine crystallize, stick together, and solidify into a mass. This happens when your urine contains more crystal-forming substances, such as calcium and uric acid, than the available fluid can dilute. This can happen when urine is highly acid or highly alkaline.
A key remedy for preventing and treating kidney stones is drinking lots of water. Certain foods, such as citrus fruits, pomegranate, dark grapes, almonds, dates and some herbs have been known to support healthy kidney function.