OAB Natural Remedies

OAB Natural Remedies

Affecting over 33 million men and women in the U.S. alone, symptoms of an overactive bladder (OAB) include frequent urination, incontinent leakage, and an overwhelming urge to urinate at sporadic intervals. Let’s take a look at some OAB natural remedies.

OAB often causes frustration and embarrassment in those coping with the condition. People seeking relief from OAB may wish to try natural remedies aimed at minimizing and preventing symptoms. Depending on the severity of symptoms and their rate of recurrence, however, it is always recommended that you visit with your doctor.

First, there are several simple exercises that help to both train the bladder and strengthen the bladder muscles which control urination. Kegel exercises, for instance, involve the flexing and release of the muscles used to stop and start urinating. Results occur after approximately one month of doing Kegels just a few time times over the course of the day. Kegels entail flexing for 2-3 seconds, then releasing for a comparable amount of time. This exercise is particularly popular among women during pregnancy and childbirth but produces beneficial results among men as well.

Another low-maintenance exercise involves scheduling bathroom breaks, which means avoiding urinating unless at a pre-specified time, and thereby trains the bladder to contract in a more controlled fashion.

Overall body conditioning is also helpful as excess fat can in some cases put added strain on the muscles surrounding the bladder.

In conjunction with exercises, herbal remediesalthough largely scientifically unprovenare reported to help OAB. These herbs include saw palmetto (anti-inflammatory and testosterone balancer that is mostly used by males), cleavers (anti-irritatant with coating properties), gosha-jinki-gan (helps with bladder capacity and urinary urgency/frequency), buchu (enriches bladder tissue), and cornsilk (soothes bladder). It is highly recommended that you consult with your doctor before trying these alternatives.

Further, diet plays a huge role in bladder capacity and functionality. Eating healthy and avoiding irritants and stimulants—such as caffeine, excess spice and salt, alcohol, carbonated drinks, and artificial sweeteners—are likely to alleviate OAB over time.

Through simple exercises, herbal remedies, careful dieting, as well as doctor consultation, the chances of minimizing OAB are greatly increased.

Featured Image: Depositphotos/© vadimphoto1@gmail.com

How Common is Frequent Urination in Men?

Frequent Urination in Men

Frequent urination, specifically in men, is caused by a variety of factors. Those causes particularly prevalent in males include an overactive bladder (OAB), diabetes, urethral stricture, prostatitis, and benign prostatic hyperplasia. So how common is frequent urination in men?

Frequent urination corresponding to an overactive bladder, or OAB, is caused by involuntary contractions of the bladder, affecting over 33 million Americans (both men and women in comparable measure).

Diabetes, both types 1 and 2, is another cause of frequent urination; however, proper disease management helps to alleviate those symptoms.

Urethral stricture is caused by internal scarring that restricts the flow of urine from the bladder. Often causing urinary tract infections, urethral stricture also produces frequent or urgent urination, and typically affects males due to their having a longer urethra than females.

Prostatitis is a totally male-specific cause of frequent urination and results from the swelling and inflammation of the prostate gland, which sits directly below the bladder. With the prostate gland swollen or inflamed, bladder functionality is negatively impacted, often causing strained or painful urination.

Benign prostatic hyperplasia is another form of prostate gland enlargement but generally affects older men. The enlarged prostate gland obstructs the flow of urine from the bladder to the urethra.

The first step in treating frequent urination is to diagnose its underlying causes by consulting a doctor. Once properly diagnosed, the doctor then recommends treatment options appropriate to the patient.

Prostate-related frequent urination treatment options may include medication or surgery.

Diabetes-related frequent urination issues can be largely mitigated by carefully managing blood sugar levels.

OAB-related frequent urination can be treated in a number of ways, which should be chosen in conjunction with doctor recommendations. These include behavioral strategies and exercise therapiessuch as Kegel exercises (which strengthen the pelvic floor)monitoring and managing fluid intake, imposing dietary restrictions, and retraining the bladder by resisting the urge to visit the washroom for small periods of time.

Featured Image: twitter

How is OAB Diagnosed?

OAB

The underlying causes of an overactive bladder (OAB) vary as widely as its treatment options. With roughly 33 million people affected by OAB in the U.S. alone, an overactive bladder is commonly misperceived as being exclusive to the elderly and simply the byproduct of aging. People of any age, however, may be affected by OAB. For anyone wondering whether their symptoms correspond to OAB, the first step is to consult with a doctor. Reviewing one’s medical history (including family medical history), current health issues, as well as urinary habits and irregularities, will help determine what exactly is causing symptoms. After a doctor takes this information, they are likely to investigate further via physical examination.

If OAB is considered a possible diagnosis, they will likely recommend a specialist, such as a urologist or urogynecologist, who will first assess the patient condition by analyzing a urine sample. Symptoms of OAB can often overlap with urinary tract infections (UTIs), kidney complications, and diabetes. If those conditions are ruled out, a urodynamic test is administered to determine how much urine the bladder is capable of holding and emptying, while measuring how much urine remains in the bladder after urination is finished. This test uses ultrasound technology to determine whether and how much urine remains in the bladder. If there is still urine in the bladder, a catheter is inserted to retrieve and measure said urine.

A urologist or urogynecologist may conduct a cystometry test, in which a catheter is used to fill the bladder with warm water, while a second catheter, called a cystoscope, measures pressure while inserted in the rectum (if male) or the vaginal cavity (if female).  

A uroflowmetry test may also be administered simultaneously, measuring the speed and strength of urine as it is being expelled, as well as its overall resulting volume while checking for involuntary muscle contractions. Uroflowmetry tests also help detect blockages in the bladder or urethra.

Stress tests are another option, in which a doctor instructs the patient to cough while the bladder is filled to near-capacity.

If OAB is diagnosed, the doctor then works with the patient to determine the most appropriate and effective course of action.

Featured Image: twitter

The Symptoms of OAB

Symptoms of OAB

An overactive bladder (OAB) is a form of urinary incontinence involving the involuntary contraction of the urinary walls, which produces an overwhelming need to dispel its containing liquids (even when the bladder is not full). Though common among the elderly, as bladder muscles weaken with age, OAB can affect people of any age for a number of reasons. So what are the symptoms of OAB?

Abnormalities in and disintegration of both nerves and muscles are the primary cause of OAB involuntary contractions. Irregularities and degenerative patterns can stem from nervous system issues such as multiple sclerosis, stroke, Parkinson’s Disease, dementia, spinal cord injury, to name a few.

Anyone experiencing problems urinating, including frequent urination, should not wait to visit their doctor.

OAB treatment therapies vary widely. There exist behavioral therapies (such as resisting the urge to urinate), pelvic muscle rehabilitation (often using Kegel exercises), and electrical stimulation therapies. Medications are sometimes prescribed, such as Oxybutynin, antidepressants, Tolterodine, and botox, all aimed at inhibiting the involuntary contractions inherent to OAB.

Regulating how much and what kinds of fluids one ingests is another strategy combatting OAB. Additionally, some cope with OAB by scheduling bathroom trips and wearing OAB-appropriate undergarments.

The multitude of treatment options available to those suffering from OAB may help to assuage anxieties associated with having this unfortunate condition. Whether through exercise, medications, behavioral therapies, or otherwise, there are many solutions available (in conjunction with a doctor’s guidance) to help alleviate the symptoms of OAB.

Those experiencing problems with OAB are encouraged to visit their doctor immediately as there may be underlying health concerns in addition to OAB itself. Further, leaving the problem untreated too long may worsen the condition. Patients should approach various treatment options with an open mind until the appropriate treatment strategy works for them.

Featured Image: twitter

What Causes Incontinence?

What Causes Incontinence

Urinary incontinence is caused by a myriad of factors, including medical conditions like diabetes and dementia, physical problems such as obesity, and various dietary issues. Women are commonly affected to a higher degree, with incontinence often accompanying pregnancy and childbirth, as well as menopause later in life. It is important to consult with your doctor to find out what reasons underlie any problems with incontinence. Here is what causes incontinence.

Urinary incontinence generally falls under two categories: temporary and permanent.

Overhydration is a common cause of temporary incontinence, with an excessive consumption of liquids prompting frequent dispelling of liquids and possibly a lack of control over one’s bladder. Alcohol, caffeine, carbonated drinks with artificial sweeteners, and foods high in acid, spice or sugar, all stimulate the bladder excessively and can cause frequent urination.

Certain medications, such as muscle relaxants and blood pressure drugs, are also factors contributing to temporary urinary incontinence.

Given that the rectum is located in close proximity to the bladder, constipation can affect bladder control as excessive stool puts added strain on surrounding nerves and muscles used to control the bladder.

Urinary tract infections (UTIs) also affect bladder control, potentially causing temporary problems with incontinence, or frequent urination.

Persistent urinary incontinence is often the natural result of aging, as muscles controlling the bladder weaken over time. Susceptibility to disease and infection among the elderly are another reason for bladder control issues.

Women are particularly susceptible to incontinence during pregnancy and childbirth, due to an enlargement of the uterus, hormonal variances, and stress-related factors. Further, women going through menopause often experience persistent urinary incontinence as bladder control muscles weaken with age.

Featured Image: twitter

3 Home Remedies to Ease Frequent Urination

Home Remedies to Ease Frequent Urination

There are some simple home remedies out there to ease temporary problems with minor frequent urination. That said, major or chronically-recurring frequent urination can be an indication of more severe health issues, such as diabetes or infection, and those issues should be ruled out by visiting your doctor before trying simpler home methods. So, here are 3 home remedies to ease frequent urination;

1 – Non-Traditional Medicine

An alternative to prescription medications, specific plants and herbal blends have been known to provide relief. Although most of these methods are not substantiated by legitimate medical research, most are otherwise harmless attempts in the form of healthy teas and supplements. It’s recommended that you consult with your doctor, however, before ingesting unproven alternative medicine. Herbs and supplements may include resiniferatoxin, cleavers, buchu, cranberries, ganoderma lucidum, capsaicin, horsetail, and several others.

2 – Managing Your Fluid Intake

Avoid the overconsumption of water, perhaps limiting yourself to one glass between meals, and a maximum of two during. In addition to how much you drink, watch what you drink. Alcohol and caffeine are both diuretics that produce abnormal responses from the body. Diet sodas also cause abnormal urinary reactions, with artificial sweeteners resulting in more frequent, and often stronger, spells of urination. Sugar drinks and water are better bets.  

3 – Muscle Exercise

Strengthening your pelvic floor through kegel exercises is known to help urination control. By relaxing and contracting the same muscles used to stop and start urination, flexing and resting for 2-3 seconds alternatingly, strengthening this part of your body may alleviate minor frequent urination problems. This kind of exercise may be easier while lying on the floor with your knees bent. Further, total body conditioning may assist with better control over bladder muscles as too much fat can cause added strain on both the sphincter and bladder muscles.

Featured Image: Depositphotos/© photographee.eu

Who is Susceptible to Urinary Incontinence?

Urinary Incontinence

Over 25 million North Americans live with urinary incontinence in some form or another. Often due to an inability to control the sphincter muscle — which, in turn, translates into an inability to control the bladder — incontinence presents itself in varying forms. For instance, some people experience a minor loss of control over their bladder when coughing, laughing, or sneezing. Other forms are anxiety- or disease-related. A form known as urge incontinence relates to small amounts of urine producing a strong urge to evacuate one’s bladder.

Those with obesity are at a higher risk for urinary incontinence given that excess weight puts too much strain on muscles surrounding the sphincter and bladder. Obese patients suffering from incontinence often suffer from diabetes or are at risk for type 2 diabetes.

Degenerative neurological diseases such as multiple sclerosis also result in urinary incontinence.

Whereas men can suffer from prostate gland issues that affect bladder control, stress incontinence is common among females going through pregnancy and childbirth. Menopause is also accompanied by urinary incontinence, as both bladder and sphincter muscles weaken over time.

A significant portion of the elderly suffers from urinary incontinence as their bladder control muscles weaken with age and their susceptibility to various diseases and illnesses increases.

Featured Image: Depositphotos/© SvyatLipinskiy

Why do you Need a Catheter?

Catheter

If a patient is experiencing difficulty evacuating their bladder normally, healthcare professionals often recommend the use of a catheter. Various conditions inhibit bladder function, resulting in either urinary retention—in which patients are unable to empty their bladder on their own—or urinary incontinence, where the patient has little or no control over when bladder contents are dispelled.

Below are a few conditions typically requiring that patients use a catheter.

Dementia

Dementiatypically affecting older individualsis often accompanied by at least some degree of incontinence. In some cases, patients are able to use adult-sized diapers; in others, doctors or nurses might see the need for a catheter. Dementia patients are particularly susceptible if they have a history of diabetes, urinary tract infections, or have undergone multiple surgeries in their past.

Parkinson’s Disease

Parkinson’s disease, a long-term degenerative illness that slowly shuts down the central nervous system, affects a patient’s ability to move, causes tremors, and can disable a patient’s control of their bladder.

Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple sclerosis attacks the myelin sheath covering the nerves of the CNS (central nervous system), deteriorating communication between the brain and nerves in the rest of the body, eventually leading to paralysis. As the disease progresses, patients normally require a catheter as they lose control over bladder evacuation.

Stroke

Catheterization is common among those who have suffered from a stroke, as patients typically lose control over either the left or right side of their body. Although many patients eventually recover and regain control of their bladder, depending on the severity of the stroke, some patients remain in paralysis indefinitely and require ongoing use of a catheter.

Surgery

The effects of anaesthesia, muscle relaxants, and localized numbing agents, in patients undergoing surgery, often result in requiring catheterization. Issues with lack of mobility post-surgery, such as the temporary inability to walk, make catheterization a more convenient choice for treating patients.

Bed Confinement

Even if a patient who is bed-confined has not lost control of their bladder, the use of a catheter is often more sanitary than adult diapers.

Recent innovations in catheter implementations have improved upon sanitary concerns, as well as their ease of use. Reusable catheters have largely fallen by the wayside in lieu of disposable (and therefore more sterile) options. Any catheter use, however, requires proper care, and often the supervision of a healthcare professional in order to prevent illness and infection.

Featured Image: twitter