Irritable bladder symptoms are associated with frequent urination in the morning, according to a 2017 study. A similar study published in 2013 found that the symptoms of irritable bladder are more common in women than in men.
It’s thought that this is because women tend to experience more stress than men.
How is it diagnosed?
Irritable bladder symptoms can be difficult to identify. You may experience these symptoms without knowing it. Doctors use a combination of medical history and physical exam to make a diagnosis.
In addition to your symptoms, your doctor will ask questions about your health and family history. They’ll also conduct a urinalysis to rule out infections or other causes of frequent urination.
The test involves dipping a cotton swab into your urine and placing it on a slide. Your doctor can use this to check for infection. If you have a urinary tract infection, you may have red streaks on the slide.
A cystitis evaluation may also include a urinalysis. This involves dipping a cotton swab into your urine and placing it on a slide. Your doctor can use this to check for infection.
You may also need to visit your doctor for a urodynamic test. This involves filling you up with a liquid called a contrast agent. You’ll then have your bladder emptied and a tube inserted into your urethra. A small camera will be placed in the tube and used to record images of your bladder as it fills and empties.
These images can help your doctor determine if your bladder is too small, which may be the cause of your symptoms. Your doctor may also perform a cystoscopy, or a visual examination of your urinary tract. This involves inserting a thin tube into your urethra to take a look inside.
How is it treated?
Treatment for irritable bladder varies depending on the underlying cause. In some cases, simple home remedies may be enough to treat symptoms. However, you should see your doctor for further treatment if you don’t find relief.
You may also be prescribed a medication to treat your symptoms. These may include:
- Beta-adrenergic blockers
- Tricyclic antidepressants
If you don’t find relief from home remedies, your doctor may recommend a procedure to create a new opening in your bladder to relieve pressure and reduce incontinence. This may include:
- A procedure called bulking
- A procedure called urostomy
In some cases, your doctor may suggest surgery to correct a problem with your bladder, such as a prolapse or a bladder stone.
How can you prevent it?
You can’t prevent irritable bladder. But you can take steps to reduce the likelihood of developing it. These include:
- Drinking plenty of water throughout the day to stay hydrated.
- Limiting caffeine and alcohol intake.
- Eating a balanced diet that includes fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins.
- Taking a hot bath or shower before bed.
- Wearing loose, breathable clothing.
- Limiting stress.
When to contact a doctor?
The symptoms of irritable bladder usually resolve once you start taking steps to treat the underlying causes. If you don’t find relief, or if your symptoms don’t improve after a few months of home remedies, see a doctor.
A doctor will be able to help identify the cause of your symptoms and suggest the best treatment. They can also discuss the possibility of underlying conditions, such as:
- Bladder cancer
- Bladder stones
- Bladder prolapse
- Bladder infection
- Urinary tract infection
You may also benefit from a consultation with a urologist. Here, you can discuss your symptoms and get a diagnosis and treatment that will fit your unique needs.
Outcome for irritable bladder
Irritable bladder is usually treated with simple home remedies. In some cases, it may be difficult to find relief from home remedies. In this case, your doctor may recommend surgery to create a new opening in your bladder.
In some cases, you may also benefit from surgery. For instance, if your symptoms are caused by a prolapse, your doctor may recommend a procedure to correct the problem.
If you don’t find relief from home remedies or you have underlying conditions, you may benefit from urologic consultation. In this case, your doctor will be able to identify the problem and recommend a treatment plan that will help you get relief.
In some cases, you may need to try medication for several months before you find relief. It may take time until you find the right medication and dosage.
Your doctor will monitor your symptoms and may recommend a follow-up appointment.
What is the long-term outlook?
In many cases, irritable bladder is a temporary condition that goes away once you start treatment.
However, some cases require more than home remedies. In some cases, you may need to seek treatment from a urologist. In other cases, you may need surgery.
It’s important to see your doctor if your symptoms don’t improve. You should also see your doctor if you have any of the following symptoms:
- You’re unable to urinate
- You can’t urinate at all
- You’re unable to pass urine
- You’re passing blood
- You’re passing a large amount of fluid
- You have a fever or chills
- You’re passing mucus
- You have pain or pressure in your abdomen
- You have a skin rash
- You feel the need to urinate frequently
- You have blood in your urine
- You have an infection in your urinary tract
- You’re passing blood or pus from your penis or vagina
- You have a high fever
- You’re passing urine with blood
- You have nausea
- You have frequent urination
- You’re passing urine more than 12 times in 30 minutes
- You’re passing urine more than six times in a day
- You have incontinence
In some cases, irritable bladder goes away on its own. However, in some cases, you may need to see your doctor. In this case, your doctor will give you a diagnosis and recommend treatment.
Your doctor will likely prescribe medication to help you manage your symptoms. Some medications can help relieve symptoms and ease bladder control issues.
Can it be prevented?
You can’t prevent irritable bladder. However, you can take steps to reduce the likelihood of developing it. These include:
- Drinking plenty of water throughout the day to stay hydrated and reduce your risk of dehydration.
- Eating a balanced diet that includes fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins
- Limiting caffeine and alcohol intake
- Limiting salt intake
- Wearing loose, breathable clothing
- Limiting stress
If you have irritable bladder, talk to your doctor. They can help you develop a treatment plan that will help you manage your symptoms.
How can you reduce the risk of irritable bladder?
Certain lifestyle factors can increase your risk of irritable bladder. Here are some tips for reducing your risk:
- Limit or completely avoid caffeine and alcohol.
- Limit salt intake.
- Eat a balanced diet that includes fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins.
- Limit your exposure to infection.
- Limit your use of urinary incontinence products.
- Limit your use of diaphragms or pelvic support belts.
- Avoid wearing tight pants.
- Avoid wearing tight clothing.
- Avoid wearing tight shoes.
What’s the outlook?
Irritable bladder is often treatable, and there are many options available. However, you should see your doctor if you’re unable to find relief with home remedies.
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