Overactive Bladder Treatment Options
Life is challenging with a chronic condition. And life doesn't stop being challenging when your chronic condition surrounds one of the most mundane bodily tasks that everyone alive does, mostly without much thought. In fact, it, in turn, can make life way more difficult as that activity is now hindered by the effects of the chronic condition. OAB is one of those chronic conditions.
Those who suffer from OAB know what it's like to constantly be running to the washroom and experience bladder leakage with each episode of OAB, among other frustrating symptoms.
Unfortunately, there are four major symptoms of OAB that we may be faced with every day. It can become tricky to combat them all at once. However, the list of treatments and remedies for OAB is much longer than just the four symptoms alone, and in the many types of treatments, there may be one that gives you the relief from OAB that you need.
Lifestyle Overactive Bladder Treatment
Let’s start with lifestyle remedies. Sometimes the simplest things can be overlooked, but unfortunately can be the most challenging things to change.
While most lifestyle changes can be done without any extra costs or a doctors note, it is easier said than done. What may be helpful and beneficial to everyday life does not usually come easily.
Changing one’s behavior and routine is a challenging and self-disciplined process. You normally wouldn’t change yourself unless something isn’t working. However, as beneficial as it is to successfully change these lifestyle habits, it may not be enough to conquer OAB.
Avoid Caffeine and Alcohol
For instance, if your OAB is triggered by carbonated beverages, caffeine or alcohol consumption, one would think that you need to stop drinking those beverages altogether.
While this may, in fact, decrease OAB sensitivity, it may not increase happiness. Some will sacrifice the effects of OAB for a cup of coffee in the morning because coffee has proven to show increased levels of serotonin in the brain, making us feel rewarded and happy from caffeine.
There’s nothing wrong with having beverages like these, however, it’s recommended in moderation. As well as specifically altering how and when you drink them as not to overwhelm your bladder.
It may not be the best time to chug a liter of coffee right before a road trip. Instead, stagger your intake specifically to when there will be pit stops.
Setting a Schedule
Other lifestyle changes may include things like managing voiding intervals throughout your day. Set a time frame of every half hour, to every two hours, and use the washroom at that set time. This allows your bladder to be void of urine that might cause irritation to the bladder walls, which in turn is urgency and frequency.
Weight control is also very important in that increased weight on the abdomen can cause pressure on your internal organs which leads to pressure and strain on your bladder.
Exercise and Physical Therapy
Exercise and physical therapy is also a great way of gaining control over your bladder. By strengthening your abdominal muscles and pelvic floor muscles, you decrease the risk of urge incontinence.
Cigarette smoking has also been linked with OAB. Studies show that the increase of intra-abdominal pressure from chronic coughing due to cigarette smoking will put the bladder at risk for OAB. As well, nicotine does not only just affect your lungs. When nicotine gets into the bladder, it can aggravate the detrusor muscles and cause them to become overactive.