Are you suffering from an overactive bladder?

An overactive bladder causes patients to have a sudden urge to urinate, which can also be associated with incontinence. It Is estimated that in the UK around 3-6 million people have suffer with a urinary problem. This condition can be very intrusive and affect your quality of life. However, there are a number of different treatments that can be used to improve an overactive bladder.

It is important to note that an overactive bladder is not the same as urinary incontinence, which causes you to leak urine. An overactive bladder is determined by how often you go to the toilet and how urgent it is when you need to go. Here are some of the most common symptoms that patients experience:

  • An urgent urge to urine that is uncontrollable

  • Urinating more than 8 times in a 24-hour period

  • Waking up to urinate more than once in the night

  • Involuntary loss of urine

Symptoms will often vary between patients, which can sometimes make it a hard condition to diagnose.

If you have an overactive bladder then it means that your bladder contracts involuntary, giving you the sensation that you need to urinate, even if your bladder is not full. The exact cause of an overactive bladder is unknown. This condition is more common in older patients; however, it is important to know that this is not a normal part of ageing. Here are some of the possible causes for an over active bladder:

  • Medication that increases urine production

  • Urinary tract infection

  • Drinking too much fluid

  • Unable to fully empty your bladder

  • Consumption of bladder irritants such as alcohol or caffeine

  • Abnormalities such as bladder stones

Once you have been diagnosed, your consultant may offer you one or more of the following treatments to help resolve your symptoms:

  • Medication

  • Pelvic floor exercises

  • Botox – this stops the bladder muscles from contracting too often

  • Nerve stimulation

  • Surgery – increasing the bladder capacity

This article is intended to inform and give insight but not treat, diagnose or replace the advice of a doctor. Always seek medical advice with any questions regarding a medical condition.

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