Signs And Symptoms Of Overactive Bladder
Symptoms of overactive bladder vary from person to person, and may include:
- Sudden, urgent need to urinate
- Difficulty holding in urine
- Frequent urination
- Unintentional loss of urine with urgent need to urinate
- Waking up more than once or twice at night to urinate
The defining symptom of overactive bladder is sudden, strong urges to urinate. You may fear that youll leak urine on the way to the bathroom.
Even if you dont actually leak urine, OAB can disrupt your life and may cause significant distress.
Interstitial Cystitis And Overactive Bladder
Overactive bladder is also one of the main symptoms of interstitial cystitis , a condition with symptoms including intense pelvic pain, bladder frequency, and bladder urgency.
Interstitial cystitis is a spectrum disorder that can be mild in some patients and severe in others. While IC was once seen exclusively as a bladder condition, it is now viewed as a condition of the bladder, pelvic floor muscles, and often the nervous system. Medical professionals say that all aspects of the condition need to be addressed for healing to occur.
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.
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Other Causes Of Oab In Men
An enlarged prostate is the cause of OAB in most men, but there are numerous other factors that can lead to symptoms. An infection in the bladder, bladder stones, or bladder cancer can all cause OAB. Neurological conditions, such as a stroke or Parkinsons disease, can also lead to OAB because of nerve damage that results in sending incorrect signals to the bladder.
Its also possible for temporary factors to cause symptoms of OAB. If you drink a lot of fluids, especially those that are caffeinated or contain alcohol, if you take medications that increase urine output, or if you are constipated, you might experience an increased need to urinate.
Overactive Bladder Treatment Options
Research indicates that most people believe the symptoms of an overactive bladder are an inevitable and normal part of growing older, rather than a treatable medical problem. This couldnt be further from the truth.
In fact, fewer than half of individuals with incontinence actually consult a healthcare provider about their problem. This is unfortunate, since there are many treatments available to combat symptoms of OAB.
Even though it may feel embarrassing to talk about your condition, its important to talk to your doctor about your incontinence symptoms. Watch our short film below about the importance of speaking up about bladder leakage.
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Treatments For Overactive Bladder
We have experience in a variety of innovative, leading-edge treatments for overactive bladder. Our mission is to find the right treatment for you and to help you feel better. Your treatment options may include: Avoiding bladder irritants such as coffee and alcohol Botox injections to improve bladder control Diet changes Managing fluids Neuromodulation Pelvic floor therapy Percutaneous tibial nerve stimulation or PTNS Using a catheter to empty the bladder periodicallyTaking medications for overactive bladder
How Do I Control Urges When Resetting My Bladder
Controlling your urges is a key step in resetting your bladder. The following strategies may help:
- Stop what youre doing and stay put. Stand quietly or sit down, if possible. Remain as still as possible. When youre still, its easier to control your urges.
- Squeeze your pelvic floor muscles quickly several times . Dont fully relax in between Kegels.
- Relax the rest of your body. Take several deep breaths to help you let go of any tension.
- Concentrate on suppressing your urge to pee.
- Wait until the urge goes away.
- Walk to the bathroom at a normal pace. Dont rush. Continue squeezing your pelvic floor muscles quickly while you walk.
Patience is important. Retraining your bladder usually takes at least six to eight weeks to see results. Talk to a healthcare provider if you have any questions or arent happy with your progress. They may prescribe medications for you to take while youre resetting your bladder to help you achieve the best outcome.
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Weight Loss & Health Improvements To Reduce Your Symptoms
Studies suggest that losing excess weight can reduce the symptoms of stress incontinence and an overactive bladder.
What does this mean exactly? If you can lose about 8 percent of your body weight thats typically around 15 to 20 pounds you will likely see remarkable results. In fact, even just a few pounds of weight loss can reduce incontinence episodes by over 25%.
Aside from all the other health benefits, by losing weight the abdomen will alleviate pressure on all the organs in the area, including the bladder.
As well as weight loss, getting regular exercise can reduce overactive bowel symptoms. Exercise can help to reduce the strain on your bladder which ultimately means less urine leaks.
Stopping smoking can also help with OAB problems since the smoke from cigarettes can irritate your bladder. Smoking can also lead to hacking cough a loud, dry cough which can cause further leaks.
Prevention Of Overactive Bladder
Following a healthy diet and getting enough physical activity can help improve bladder symptoms by strengthening muscles in your torso, ensuring bowel regularity, and helping you maintain a healthy body weight.
Certain foods and ingredients can irritate your bladder, and you may want to keep a diary to figure out whether any are contributing to your symptoms.
Foods and beverages that may contribute to OAB include:
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What Are The Treatments For An Overactive Bladder
Once tests have been done to determine the cause your overactive bladder, your doctor will suggest a solution that will alleviate your symptoms and minimise any side effects. And while the goal is obviously to find a simple, effective solution, it could be one or a combination of treatments including lifestyle changes, medications and/or surgery.
- Bladder Training and Scheduled Voiding This method teaches the bladder to steadily hold urine over time, which can help build a tolerance to the urgency that comes with an overactive bladder.
- Double Voiding This involves urinating twice within a few minutes in between to void any residual urine in the bladder.
- Kegel exercises These are pelvic exercises to help manage urge incontinence in an overactive bladder by helping strengthen the muscles of the pelvic floor and urinary sphincter.
- Fluid and Diet Management including:
- maintaining a schedule of the timing and amount of daily fluid intake
- limiting caffeine and acidic drinks such as coffee, cranberry and citrus juices
- limiting alcohol
- eating foods high in fibre, such as flaxseed, or taking fibre supplements.
A Review Of Medical History
The first step to understanding any condition is to understand the medical history. Your physician will go through your symptoms through questions. Your doctor will also review associated health conditions such as hypertension, and diabetes, if any. You will need to inform your doctor about your past medical records, medications, and supplements you regularly take, to help them better understand your current health condition. Inform your doctor about your diet, liquids, and water consumption.
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Overactive Bladder Treatments And Remedies
Sure, having an overactive bladder is not exactly fun. But it doesnât have to get in the way of having some! While it can feel overwhelming, there are a number of lifestyle changes you can make in order to alleviate or manage the symptoms of an overactive bladder. Most of them are straightforward and easy to implement, while delivering a big payoff. Try out some of the overactive bladder treatment and remedy recommendations below to see what works best for you.
Best Treatments For Overactive Bladder
Overactive bladder, commonly known as OAB, is characterized by frequent, sudden, and difficult-to-control urges to urinate. You may experience these urges and suffer from unintentional urine loss throughout the day and night. OAB can be uncomfortable, embarrassing, and disrupt your daily activities. There are several different options available to manage OAB. Here are some of the best treatments for overactive bladder.
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How Is Male Overactive Bladder Assessed
The assessment of male overactive bladder is very similar to that of female OAB and includes:
- Details of bladder habits e.g. how many times in a 24-hour period toileting occurs
- Details of incontinence such as triggers, frequency, severity, pad usage, effects on quality of life
- Other medical history e.g. of conditions that can affect bladder control such as diabetes, heart failure
- Medications both prescribed and over the counter
- Fluid intake especially that of bladder irritants such as coffee, tea, cola drinks, alcohol
- Past history urological surgery , pelvic radiotherapy, other pelvic surgery, neurological problems
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Overactive Bladder At A Glance
- Overactive bladder is a group of urinary symptoms that produces the feeling that one has to go to the bathroom urgently and often.
- Women also may have accidental leakage of urine with urgency and leak urine because they canât get to the bathroom in time . Some women also wake up many times in the middle of the night to urinate .
- Overactive bladder is common in both men and women, with 40% of women experiencing OAB symptoms.
- OAB can be caused by nerve damage from another medical condition or have no apparent cause. Factors increasing oneâs risk for OAB include age, childbirth, obesity and urinary tract infections.
- This condition causes emotional stress and can disrupt a personâs normal lifestyle. Yet many women, and men, are too embarrassed to talk about it, so they suffer needlessly.
- Women do not have to suffer with symptoms of OAB and urge incontinence! We have several types of treatments to address these including lifestyle changes, medications, pelvic floor muscle therapy, Botox injections and nerve stimulation treatments.
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Who Does Overactive Bladder Affect
Overactive bladder is most common in people 65 and older. Women may have OAB at a younger age, usually around 45.
How common is overactive bladder?
Overactive bladder is common. It affects up to 33 million adults in the U.S., including as many as 30% of men and 40% of women. However, that number may be higher because many people may feel embarrassed and wont get help.
How does overactive bladder affect my body?
Overactive bladder symptoms can cause stress and affect your quality of life.
Treatment And Medication Options For Overactive Bladder
Overactive bladder may be treated with lifestyle changes, drugs, office procedures, implantable devices, or surgery.
Guidelines from the American Urologic Association to treat non-neurogenic OAB, updated in 2019, recommend asfirst line treatment behavioral therapies such as
- bladder training
- fluid management -guideline” rel=”nofollow”> 4)
If lifestyle measures arent enough, youll most likely be prescribed a small dose of a drug, which can be increased as needed to control symptoms.
If drugs dont deliver the relief you need, your doctor may give you Botox injections to help relax your bladder muscle.
Both office-based procedures and implantable devices can deliver electrical impulses to the nerves that communicate with your bladder, helping it relax.
In rare cases, your doctor may recommend surgery to increase your bladders capacity or to remove it completely.
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What Do We Mean By Small Bladder
Firstly, lets clear up the confusion between having a small bladder and an overactive bladder. Anatomically, its highly unlikely anyone has a small bladder. Our internal organs dont tend to differ from one person to the next.
However, it is possible to have a functionally small bladder, which means your bladder, for any number of reasons, cant hold a lot of urine. Bladder muscles and/or the bladder sphincter muscles become overactive and as a result there is a constant need to void.
Thats why when some people say they have a small bladder, what theyre really suggesting is they have an overactive bladder.
Overactive Bladder Causes Symptoms And Treatments
Think you may have an overactive bladder? Use this guide to understand the causes of an overactive bladder, common symptoms, and get treatment options.
Do you feel the urge to urinate more than 6 to 8 times a day? Do you often feel like youâre having âpee emergenciesâ that send you running to the bathroom, unsure if youâll make it in time? You may have an overactive bladder. Use this guide to understand the main causes of an overactive bladder, learn about common symptoms and get treatment options.
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Overactive Bladder: What Are The Causes
Typically, when the bladder gets full, the brain signals the bladder to contract and release the stored urine. This causes an urge to urinate, and the bladder muscles contract to pass out the urine through the urethra during urination.
During urination, the sphincter muscles in the urethra open up to force out the urine. But, when the bladder is not full, the bladder muscles relax. A healthy bladder signals only when the bladder is full or about to get full.
An overactive bladder can signal the urgency to urinate even when the bladder isnt full. An overactive bladder is when the nerve signals between the brain and bladder do not function properly. The sudden urge to urinate can arise even when the bladder is not full.
A bladder spasm or detrusor contraction occurs when a sudden contraction or squeezing of the bladder muscles occurs. The reaction, also known as the spastic bladder, pushes the urine out, causing leakage or urge incontinence.
Overactive bladder is also caused when the bladder muscles are way too active. In other words, the bladder muscles contract even when the bladder is not full. Thus causing an urgency to urinate more frequently.
Overactive Bladder In Men: Causes Diagnosis And Treatment
What is an overactive bladder?
Overactive bladder is a relatively common condition. Typical symptoms include frequent urination, frequent nighttime urination, persistent urge to urinate, and urine leakage or incontinence.
An estimated 33 million Americans have OAB, reports the Urology Care Foundation, and as many as 30 percent of men experience symptoms. Its possible that even more men have the condition, but never seek help. If you suspect you have OAB, talk to your doctor. There are a variety of treatments options that may help.
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Nonsurgical And Surgical Procedures
If medication isn’t effective at treating your overactive bladder, you may be a candidate for certain procedures.
Nerve stimulation, also known as neuromodulation therapy, sends electrical impulses to nerves that connect the bladder and the brain to help them communicate more effectively.
There are two main types of nerve stimulation: percutaneous tibial nerve stimulation and sacral neuromodulation . The first involves a series of in-office treatments, while the second involves surgically implanting a bladder pacemaker.
In very rare and serious cases, surgery may be considered to enlarge the bladder or change the flow of urine.
Overactive Bladder And Botox
Botox may be best known as a great wrinkle reducer for the face. But this injection has actually shown great promise as a treatment for many medical conditions.
Most overactive bladder medications aim to calm muscles and nerves in the urinary tract. If these medicines arent effective, your doctor may consider injecting Botox into your bladder muscles. This can help calm the muscles and reduce symptoms of OAB.
Botox injections for overactive bladder are well-tolerated with few side effects. The injections effects typically last six to eight months. After that time, your doctor may want to use another round of injections to control symptoms.
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Complications Of Overactive Bladder
Overactive bladder can have a significant negative impact on your quality of life. It can interfere with work, sleep, exercise, your social life, and your sex life.
Many people with OAB are nervous about having access to a restroom outside their home and may shy away from certain social activities or even everyday errands. This, in turn, may result in feeling isolated and lonely.
If you need to get up several times during the night to urinate, it may be difficult to get restful sleep. This can leave you tired during the day and contribute to mood disorders, like depression and anxiety.
And if youre worried that sexual activity will cause discomfort, that youll be interrupted by the need to urinate, or that youll leak urine, you may be reluctant to engage in sex. This can take a toll on relationships, causing further emotional difficulty.
In addition, urine leakage can lead to skin problems or infections.