Natural Ways To Treat An Overactive Bladder
About a year ago, I began noticing I was getting up several times a night to pee. Once I thought about it, I realized I was peeing a lot during the day, too. The problem escalated and escalated until I was getting up three to five times a night, leading to severe sleep deprivation. Desperate for a solution, I got tested for interstitial cystitis, ovarian cysts, diabetes, kidney stones, you name it. But with all the results negative, I instead got the frustrating diagnosis of overactive bladder .
I describe an OAB diagnosis as frustrating because it doesn’t have a simple cure. Your options are to go on medication, to see a physical therapist who can teach you helpful exercises or an osteopath who can manipulate your nerves, to try a more drastic treatment like Bladder Botox injections or electrical bladder stimulation, or to make a bunch of small changes to your lifestyle that can gradually alleviate the problem. “Even though treatment options exist, many patients opt for natural and homeopathic remedies, since no single treatment has been proven to be most effective,” Caleb Backe, Health and Wellness Expert for Maple Holistics, tells Bustle.
There are two main symptoms of OAB,Los Angeles-based urologist S. Adam Ramin, MD tells Bustle: urgency frequency and urgency incontinence . Some people with OAB only have the first symptom, while others have both.
Precautions And Proper Diagnosis
The main symptoms of OAB can also occur in other health conditions like bladder cancer, urinary tract infection and enlarged prostate. Seeing blood in your urine is not a symptom of OAB.
A sudden and frequent need to urinate is common in both OAB and a UTI. How can you tell the difference between these two urinary health issues? Unlike OAB, a UTI also comes with other symptoms such as discomfort while urinating. In addition, OAB symptoms are continuous while UTI symptoms are sudden and may also include a fever.
Overflow incontinence is characterized by the involuntary release of urine from an overfull urinary bladder, often in the absence of any urge to urinate. This condition is not associated with OAB. It typically occurs in people who have a blockage of the bladder outlet, which can occur with benign prostatic hyperplasia, prostate cancer or a narrowing of the urethra. Overflow incontinence can also occur when the muscle responsible for removing urine from the bladder is too weak to empty the bladder in a normal way.
It is very important to see a doctor to ensure a proper diagnosis if you experience any changes in your urine and/or urination habits.
Overactive Bladder: Causes + 8 Natural Remedies
Have you ever thought about your bladder control or how often you urinate each day? Probably not, unless youve experienced a bladder control problem like overactive bladder. Overactive bladder is a condition in which the bladder cannot hold urine normally. One of the most common symptoms of this health problem is urinary incontinence or leaking urine. Many people suffer in silence, but if you are currently experiencing a bladder-related difficulty you are truly not alone. Its estimated that at least 33 million Americans have overactive bladder. ” rel=”nofollow”> 1)
Sometimes a person experiencing overactive bladder doesnt have any underlying health problem. Other times, an overactive bladder can be the result of medications or other more serious health issues, such as diabetes, kidney disease, multiple sclerosis or Parkinsons disease. OAB can also occur after surgery or childbirth. How much is too much when it comes to urination? People with OAB typically have to urinate more than 8 times per day or more than once at night.
Its crucial to address overactive bladder symptoms right away. Early treatment can reduce, or even completely get rid of, the highly unwanted symptoms. With some time and effort, there are several very doable and natural ways you can overcome an overactive bladder.
You May Like: I Can T Hold My Bladder
What Are The Symptoms Of An Overactive Bladder
The symptoms of an overactive bladder may include:
- A sudden urge to urinate that may be difficult to control
- Urinary incontinence Involuntary loss of urine following a sudden urge to urinate.
- Frequent urination, usually 8 or more times in a day
- Nocturia Awakening 2 or more times during the night to pee.
While the specific cause of an overactive bladder is unknown, it is usually a result of the involuntary muscle contractions of the bladder. What could probably be causing this condition? Lets find out in the next section.
What Is Overactive Bladder
Overactive bladder problems are related to the reserve function of the bladder, causing sudden urge to urinate. Then, the bladder muscles develop contractions with greater frequency and make you want to urinate . That leads to difficulty controlling your cottage.
Urinary system includes:
The muscles also participate in the process of urinating, which leads to abnormalities in many different organs. Bladder, kidney or bladder obstruction and muscle problems can cause the bladder to overactive.
You May Like: Do Kegels Help Bladder Incontinence
Overactive Bladder Treatment Strategies
by Senior EditoriStock/champja
If you are among the 30% of men or 40% of women in the United States who have a frequent and/or urgent need to go , youre probably wondering if this is just life now: planning your activities around the nearest bathroom. And while OAB can have many causes, from a neurological condition to enlarged prostate, and even pelvic-muscle changes from pregnancy and childbirth, its very likely theres a treatment out there that can ease your symptoms. Lets talk medically backed OAB treatment options first, then well cover some common complementary therapies, too.
Saw Palmetto For Bladder Health
Saw palmetto is a type of palm native to the southeastern U.S. It produces berries that are commonly used in supplements to promote prostate health, support hormonal health and assist urinary function in men. One particular study found that men who took two saw palmetto capsules daily for 12 weeks witnessed an improvement in their urinary tract health. A similar study found that after six months of daily saw palmetto supplements, men increased their healthy urine flow and improved their urinary tract health and overall quality of life.12
Saw Palmetto Benefits & Uses
- Enhances urinary function in men
- Promotes prostate health in men
- Natural source of fatty acids
Also Check: Bcg Treatment For Bladder Cancer Procedure
Medical Treatments For An Overactive Bladder
Depending on how successful they were and the strength of your condition, your doctor may recommend that you continue with the above treatments and return for another check-up after a specific period of time.
However, if they decide, usually in consultation with the patient, that medical treatment may be beneficial or necessary, they may choose to prescribe one or multiple medical treatments, some of which are detailed below.
Cut Back On Diuretics Like Caffeine And Alcohol
Caffeine and alcohol are both double trouble, says Ramin. They’re diuretics and they stimulate bladder function. “If you suffer from urinary incontinence, one of your worst enemies can be caffeinated beverages,” he says. “Though it can be much easier said than done, limiting or eliminating caffeine altogether has been known to be successful in diminishing and resolving issues of urinary incontinence in some women.”
Similarly, he adds, “alcoholic beverages act as bladder stimulants and diuretics in most people. So when you have a problem with urinary continence, consuming even slight amounts of alcohol can make matters worse.”
If you can’t function without your daily cup of coffee, try to keep it to the morning so you’re not getting up to pee at night. And if you like having a glass of wine to wind down, at least limit it to one and keep it as far from bedtime as possible. Or, just take a break from caffeine or alcohol for a week or two, and see if the benefits you notice are worth it.
Also Check: Uti Bladder Infection Kidney Infection
Surgical Treatment For Overactive Bladder
Surgery may recommended for severe cases. The two most-commonly used procedures are:
- increases bladder size by removing a section of the bowel and adding it to the bladder. Increased bladder size allows someone to store more urine, reducing the urge to urinate. Possible complications include infection, blood clots, bowel obstruction, urinary fistula, and an increased risk of bladder tumors .
- Sacral Nerve Stimulation is a newer surgical technique that involves placing a small electrical device in the lower back. The device sends electrical impulses to the sacral nerve, which improves control of the muscles in the bladder and pelvic floor.
Avoid Urinary Tract Infections
Urinary tract infections or UTIs can be quite painful and can temporarily increase incontinence. Bacteria affect the bladder, causing pain, frequent urination, and even a false sensation of having to urinate. Although treatable with medication, preventing UTIs is the best way to protect your bladder.
Chronic UTIs can cause permanent damage to the bladder as well as the kidneys. Consuming pure cranberry juice is an effective means of minimizing your risk of developing a UTI. Likewise, always make sure you are not holding in your urine, make it a habit to pee after sex, and properly clean yourself after peeing.
You May Like: How To Relieve Bladder Pain Fast
Who Can And Cannot Take Mirabegron
Mirabegron can be taken by adults .
It is not suitable for everyone. To make sure it’s safe for you, tell your doctor or pharmacist before starting mirabegron if you:
- have had an allergic reaction to mirabegron or any other medicines in the past
- have liver or kidney problems
- have high blood pressure
- are not able to pee or empty your bladder completely
- have a blockage in your bladder
- have a heart problem called QT prolongation
- are pregnant, trying to get pregnant or breastfeeding
Need A Help From The Leading Expert Online Available 24/7
Theyre all here and ready to answer your questions online or by phone. Keep asking questions until you get the answer you need.
There are two different types of overactive bladder. The dry type is when you have an urgent, sudden need to urinate a lot of times during the day. The wet type is when you have urgent, sudden need to urinate and you go through bladder leakage, which is referred to as urge incontinence.
Both of these types could happen without underlying health issue.
What Are Common Causes Of Overactive Bladder?
OAB happens in both men and women and you can suffer from it at any point in your life. However, this condition seems to be common in older adults .
Overactive bladder is usually caused by the underlying causes:
What Are Symptoms Of Overactive Bladder?
Signs and symptoms of overactive bladder could include the following:
- Sudden urge to urinate.
- Difficult to control urination such as difficulty not urinating, urinary incontinence.
- Urinate several times a day, usually eight or more times in 24 hours.
- 2 or more than 2 times that you urinate during the night .
- In severe cases, the patient can have intermittent bedwetting
- Urinary incontinence but not cause hurt for the patient if there is no underlying urinary tract infection. The amount of urine in the day is not too much .
How Does Overactive Bladder Affect The Patient?
Who Is At Risk Of Overactive Bladder?
When To See A Doctor?
Also Check: What Medicine For Bladder Infection
How To Know You Have Overactive Bladder
It is important to confirm if you have an overactive bladder or not because increase in frequency can also be because of increase in liquid diet. Having an overactive bladder has these symptoms-
- Needing to go to bathroom more than normal
- Not being able to hold urine
- Experiencing incontinence while urinating
- Need of urinating several times throughout the night
Keeping A Bladder Diary May Help Identify Triggers
Keeping a diary may sound time consuming, but it will help both you and your doctor identify any triggers for your overactive bladder and establish just how often you visit the bathroom each day.
How should you keep a diary for your overactive bladder?
- Document exactly what kind of fluids you drink and their volume.
- Write down the type and quantity of food you eat.
- Record the number of trips to the bathroom and rate your trips as successful or not.
- Indicate what you were doing when leakage or the urge to urinate occurred
Read Also: Home Remedies For Bladder Pain
Specific Antidepressants May Suppress Symptoms
Specific antidepressants such as Tofranil, Tyramine and Norfranil may help to suppress overactive bladder symptoms. Which one your doctor chooses to prescribe will depend on your particular symptoms.
For example, the SSRI class of antidepressants works better for stress incontinence than for urge incontinence, although its not clear how it helps. Alternatively, tricyclic antidepressants are known to have anticholinergic side effects, which relax the bladder muscle and cause the muscles of the bladder neck to contract.
What Are Symptoms Of An Overactive Bladder
Overactive bladder refers to a group of urinary symptoms that include:
- Urinary urgency with or without urinary incontinence: Strong and sudden need to urinate that may cause bladder discomfort. Urinary incontinence refers to a lack of control over urination. Not all people with urinary urgency have incontinence. Those who have incontinence complain of uncontrolled leakage of urine.
- Urinary frequency: Urinating more often than usual.
- Nocturia: Increased need to urinate at night.
OAB is fairly common, affecting about 40% of women and 30% of men in the United States. Symptoms can be managed with medical treatment, although sometimes surgery may be necessary.
Recommended Reading: Malignant Neoplasm Of Overlapping Sites Of Bladder
Natural Remedies For An Overactive Bladder
1. Kegel Exercises
If a weak pelvic floor is at the root of your OAB then kegel exercises can help a lot. These pelvic floor exercises can be done anywhere at anytime and they benefit both men and women. When done regularly, they can really help an overactive bladder.
Melody Denson, MD, a board-certified urologist with the Urology Team in Austin, TX, recommends these exercises for OAB. She says, They will trigger a reflex mechanism to relax the bladder. If you feel a tremendous urge to urinate, doing a kegel before you run to the bathroom will help settle down the bladder spasm and help you hold it until you get there.
2. Avoid Dietary Triggers
Significantly reduce the following foods and drinks that are known to contribute to overactive bladder:
- Soda and other carbonated beverages
- Artificial sweeteners
- Milk and milk products
- Sugar and high sugar foods
Caffeine, alcohol and certain medications like diuretics are known to be major causes of acute incontinence, especially in the elderly population. Cranberry juice is surprisingly another thing to avoid if you have OAB. Although cranberry juice is often recommend for bladder health, it actually acts as an irritant if you have OAB.
3. Watch Fluid Intake
5. Schedule bathroom trips
6. Delay Urination
7. Try Acupuncture
8. Stop Smoking
What Causes An Overactive Bladder
This entire process of urination is controlled by nerve signals. When your bladder is filled, your brain receives signals to trigger the urge to urinate. As you urinate, your brain again receives signals to relax the muscles of your pelvic floor as well as the urethra to help pass the urine. Simultaneously, your bladder tightens to push the urine out.
In the case of an overactive bladder, the contraction of the bladder occurs involuntarily, even when the volume of urine inside is relatively low. This action causes a sudden urge to pee.
While the exact cause of this occurrence is yet to be found, the following are some factors that could be contributing to the symptoms of an overactive bladder:
- Neurological disorders
- Bladder abnormalities like tumors and/or bladder stones
- Medical conditions that may affect or obstruct bladder flow like enlarged prostate or constipation
- A history of surgery to treat incontinence
- Consuming caffeine or alcohol in excess
- A decline in cognitive function, mostly due to aging
- Incomplete emptying of the bladder
An overactive bladder can take a toll on the affected individuals life in more ways than you can imagine. Here are some wonderful home remedies that can help in managing the symptoms of an overactive bladder.
9 Natural Remedies For Overactive Bladder + Causes, Symptoms, And Diet Tips:
Read Also: Panty Liners For Bladder Leakage
Seven Effective Treatments For Overactive Bladder
Overactive bladder occurs when sudden or frequent urges to urinate become hard to control, and can often lead to leakage .
In order to best treat overactive bladder, a urologist must pinpoint the underlying cause. Treatment will depend on symptom severity and the degree to which they impact someone’s quality of life. In general, there are three approaches to treatment: medication, behavioral interventions, and surgery.
What Studies Say About Urinary Tract Infections
Okay, before we get to this amazing find, lets review what we know about UTIs. According to the National Institute of Kidney and Urologic Diseases Information Clearinghouse , a UTI is the second-most common infection in the human body. Anyone can get one, but women seem to be more at risk.
UTIs can be a serious problem. According to recent research, women with UTI infections are at a higher risk of dying or having complications if they develop bladder cancer. Symptoms are often believed to be due to the UTI and the bladder cancer is not diagnosed until it is too late.
However, other studies have some good news. One study of over 28,000 women found that if women with recurrent UTIs could find out the cause of their UTIs, they can simply eliminate whatever is causing the UTIs and easily avoid antibiotic-use or expensive medical care. The studys findings are good news, as they mean that women do not have to suffer with repeated hospital visits or frequent UTIs.
Recommended Reading: Tooth Infection Cause Bladder Infection