Most men and many women know what it is like to get up in the middle of the night with an urge to urinate. It can lead to sleepless nights and zombie-like days: not an ideal way to perform at work. Frequent nighttime urges may be a symptom of an overactive bladder.
With an overactive bladder, a person can have many strong, sudden urges to urinate and can get these urges even when he has only a small amount of urine in his bladder. Sometimes, a person may not be able to hold his urine until he gets to the bathroom, leading to urine leakage.
Even without incontinence, an overactive bladder can make it downright impossible for a person to do even simple daily tasks, much less the things he enjoys. The need to drop everything and to race to the bathroom can disrupt an effected person’s life and can lead to embarrassing leakage.
The condition of overactive bladder is caused by a muscle in the bladder that pushes urine out. There are many things that can make this muscle overactive, such as a bladder infection, stress, or other medical problems. An overactive bladder may also be caused by some brain problems, such as Parkinson’s disease or even damage caused by a past stroke.
While there are many courses of action to mitigate the effects of an overactive bladder, the first step in any treatment, sometimes known as retraining, will be to try home exercises, such as scheduling urination times. Kegel exercises can also improve pelvic muscle strength. It may even help some people to work with a physical therapist. Performing these exercises can improve some bladder problems.
If your symptoms have a severe detrimental effect on your quality of life, your Rancho Mirage urologist may suggest that you try medications along with bladder training and Kegel exercises. While prescription medication is commonly used to help control overactive bladders, they do have some side effects such as dry mouth and constipation. Whatever the downside to medication and exercises, it beats staying up all night or living with the embarrassing evidence of incontinence.