Overactive bladder is the sudden urge of urination that feels uncontrollable. You may feel that you need to urinate many times during day and night. Your bladder feels heavy and you run to the washroom quite frequently.
In some situations, overactive bladder can also result in unintentional loss of urine that can be quite disturbing. Overactive bladder is a common problem and can be treated and cured.
Why overactive bladder?
Sometimes you find yourself urinating more than usual and the pressure is uncontrollable. This is a sign that the bladder is becoming overactive. Causes of overactive bladder are as follows:
- Weak pelvic muscles: Aged people and pregnant women tend to have weak pelvic muscles. The muscles and the tissues supporting the lower abdomen are stretched and weaken. The bladder in such situations sags out of the normal position. These factors can cause leakage.
- Nerve damage: Nervous system problems can result in overactive bladder. In this, signals are sent to the brain at the wrong time to empty the bladder. Trauma and nerve diseases can trigger this problem. Special cases like pelvic or back surgery, herniated disc, radiation, Parkinson’s disease, and stroke can lead to overactive bladder.
- Medication, alcohol, and caffeine: Certain medicines, alcohol, and caffeine can make the bladder sensitive and also affect the nervous system. These can cause the bladder to overflow and can cause a high urge to urinate and possibly leakage.
- Infection: Infections like UTI can weaken the bladder. Urge to urinate is one of the many symptoms of Urinary Tract Infection.
- Excess weight: Being overweight puts pressure on the bladder and hence makes it overactive. Heavyweight is one of the major causes of urgency to urinate again and again.
Symptoms of overactive bladder
A person with an overactive bladder condition will witness some of the following symptoms that need special attention:
- Frequency of urination: An average person who consumes 8-10 glasses of water daily goes to the washroom 4-6 times a day and usually doesn’t get up from sleep for urination. A person with an overactive bladder goes to the washroom more than a healthy individual. The urgency to pee is higher and that regency could disturb his/her sleep as well.
- The urgency of urination: The urine pressure in a person with an overactive bladder is higher. They run to the bathroom every now and then. People with overactive bladder usually avoid outing for longer duration in prefer not to go to places with no washroom facility. Their urgency to urinate is higher and uncontrollable.
- Leakage: Overactive bladder can result in urine leakage. The bladder is not strong enough to control the urine pressure hence it leaks out. It is very embarrassing and can emotionally affect an individual.
Home remedies to cure overactive bladder
Overactive bladder can be quite a troublesome issue for many. You can cater to the problem with simple remedies as follows:
- Kegel exercise: Kegel exercise is one simple exercise that has proved to very helpful with the overactive bladder problem. Kegel exercise is like pretending to have to urinate but holding it. You consciously relax and tighten the muscles that control urine flow. This exercise is great to strengthen the bladder muscles, increasing your hold on your urine.
- Maintain a healthy body weight: It is very important to stay fit. Extra weight on your abdomen puts pressure on the bladder that results in frequent urination and losing control over it. Overweight is a major issue that triggers the problem of overactive urination.
- Magnesium intake: Magnesium is an important nutrient to make the muscles and nervous system healthy and active. Taking a magnesium-rich diet or taking magnesium supplements has proved to improve the problem of overactive bladder in many people. Magnesium is also helpful in clearing the urinary path, allowing the bladder to get empty completely. Magnesium-rich foods include corn, potatoes, and bananas
- Quits caffeine, alcohol, and smoking: As mentioned above, caffeine and alcohol can worsen the problem of overactive bladder. Whereas smoking has a major impact on our nervous system. In order to gain back control over your bladder, it is very important to quit alcohol, caffeine, and smoking.
- Stay hydrated: People live with a notion that not drinking too much water will help them with the overactive bladder problem. You do not have to drink a lot of water at once but you have to train your bladder by taking a sip of water after regular intervals. It will not put so much of pressure on your bladder and will make it active.
- Manage chronic conditions: Manage chronic conditions like diabetes. Diabetes is one such major problem that if not controlled can lead to bladder problems.
- Exercise: People with an overactive bladder must perform abdomen exercises to strengthen the pelvic region. Doing sit-ups, muscle contraction exercises, and holding your stomach are a few exercises that will help. Your bladder is sensitive and exercising can help it to remain fit and healthy.
Best foods for overactive bladder
There are a few foods that are helpful in maintaining a healthy bladder which includes:
Foods to avoid are:
- Carbonated beverages like sparkling water
- Coffee and tea
- Citrus fruits
- Tomatoes and tomato-based products like ketchup, soup, etc.
- Spicy foods
- Foods with too much sugar
- Raw onions
When to see a doctor?
Though overactive bladder is a common issue with aged people, healthy people, and pregnant women, the symptoms can get quite disturbing.
If your overactive bladder is troubling you a lot then feel free to discuss it with a doctor. If not medicines, acupressure, a few massages or other treatments can help you cater to the problem. So not feel ashamed to discuss.
Overactive bladder can disturb you physically and mentally. But you need to remind yourself that it is okay and the situation can be handled. So not feel ashamed and feel free to discuss. Take care!