What You Should Do If You Have an Overactive Bladder
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Overactive bladder is a condition that carries a social stigma. It can be difficult for a person to live a normal life having the urge to constantly go to the bathroom. Even though dealing with an overactive bladder can be a bit of a burden, this condition can be effectively managed with the right education, guidance, and support.

Symptoms of Overactive Bladder

The main sign of vitiligo is the excessive feeling of needing to urinate. Other symptoms of this condition might include:

  1. A sudden urge to urinate
  2. Frequent urination (more than 8 – 10 times a day)
  3. Urinary incontinence
  4. Frequent urination during the night

Classification of Overactive Bladder

  1. Wet: This is a condition where the overactive bladder leads to urinary incontinence and involuntary loss of urine.
  2. Dry: This is a condition where the urge to urinate, however, the passing of urine is voluntarily done.

Causes of Overactive Bladder

There can be many causes for an overactive bladder. This condition is usually triggered by an underlying condition. Overactivity of the bladder muscles that control the motion of the bladder is the primary cause of an overactive bladder. Some other contributing conditions include:

Diagnosing Overactive Bladder

Overactive bladder is usually diagnosed when the frequent urge to urinate that cannot be attributed to any other external condition. Complications such as urinary tract infections and tumors are first ruled out. Cystometry is then performed to evaluate bladder function.

The doctor then evaluates and examines the patient. Further tests such as a urine culture may be done to eliminate causes for infection. Once the doctor has complete information and diagnostic results on hand, he or she will make a diagnosis and suggest the appropriate course of treatment.

Treatment of Overactive Bladder

Overactive bladder is a condition which can be treated by both medicine and physical exercises.

  1. Pelvic Floor Exercises: Exercises to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles are very helpful to manage overactive bladder.
  2. Bladder Training: In patients with overactive bladder, bladder training methods are used to train the bladder to regain its function. This involves a gradual decrease in the frequency of urination. This training will be helpful if the function of the pelvic floor muscles is intact.
  3. Prescription Medicines: Drugs such as oxybutynin are prescribed for patients in combination with some physical exercise and lifestyle modifications to treat this condition. However, medicines are prescribed only if the other treatment methods show little improvement.
  4. Catheterization: Periodically using a urinary catheter to empty the bladder is a method used in some cases.

Lifestyle Modifications

Since an overactive bladder is a condition that can impact one’s social life, a few lifestyle modifications and home remedies can help one overcome the symptoms.

  1. Limit Fluid Intake: One must limit and monitor one’s fluid intake to ensure a reduction in the number of times he or she urinates.
  2. Maintain Proper Weight: People who are overweight are at a greater risk. Keeping in shape not only reduces the risk but it also keeps you healthy.
  3. Limit Alcohol/Caffeine Intake: Studies have shown excess consumption of alcohol and caffeine can cause overactive bladder. Patients with an overactive bladder will show some relief in symptoms if they reduce or stop drinking alcoholic and caffeinated beverages.
  4. Absorbent Pads: In order to reduce the social stigma attached to this condition, one can wear absorbent pads which help absorb urine leakage. These kinds of pads come in all sizes, they are discrete and are not visible when wearing clothes.

Coping With Overactive Bladder

Though it seems like a minor condition, an overactive bladder can lead to severe discomfort. People suffering from this condition need to address it in the correct manner. Support from friends and family will greatly help.

With advances in medicine, a better understanding of the condition is possible today and effective management is possible with the right treatment. A doctor might conduct counseling sessions with support groups. So, if you are constantly feeling the need to urinate, speak to your doctor today.

Quick FAQs

What is an overactive bladder?

An overactive bladder is classified as a problem with bladder function and causes the sudden and urgent need to urinate.

The content of this Website is for is for informational purposes only, is general in nature and is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease, and does not constitute professional advice. The information on this Website should not be considered as complete and does not cover all diseases, ailments, physical conditions, or their treatment. You should consult with your physician before beginning any exercise, weight loss, or health care program and/or any of the beauty treatments.


References

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Bunn F, Kirby M, Pinkney E, Cardozo L, Chapple C, Chester K, Cruz F, Haab F, Kelleher C, Milsom I, Sievert KD, Tubaro A, Wagg A. Is there a link between overactive bladder and the metabolic syndrome in women? A systematic review of observational studies. Int J Clin Pract. 2014 Dec 11. doi: 10.1111/ijcp.12518. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 25495905.

Nazir J, Posnett J, Walker A, Odeyemi IA, Hakimi Z, Garnham A. Economic evaluation of pharmacological treatments for overactive bladder from the perspective of the UK National Health Service. J Med Econ. 2014 Dec 9:1-22. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 25488631.