Overactive bladder is a common phenomenon among the elderly and can be aggravated due to a variety of diseases. More common in women than in men, it is a condition when due to a malfunction in the bladder the need to urinate becomes very sudden and frequent. The risk factors include an enlarged prostate, diabetes, and most important of all aging. In this article, we will be looking at some of the diseases that can cause an overactive bladder. In case you are suffering from an overactive bladder, you can contact Gousse Urology Miami office for Overactive Bladder Diagnosis & Treatment Options.
1. Neurological disorders
There are several neurological diseases, many of which can cause an overactive bladder, especially stroke and multiple sclerosis. It is easy to note that nerves are responsible for the proper functioning of the bladder. If the nerves are damaged, the mechanism to send status signals to the brain is missing. Therefore, patients suffering from stroke or multiple sclerosis find difficulty with controlling their bladders. The impaired nerves can behave in an unpredictable way- conveying that the bladder is full when it is not and void when it is still not completely empty. Neurological disorders may also occur due to heavy metal poisoning and surgery and may also cause the reverse condition of the underactive bladder as well.
The usual suspect and a silent killer- diabetes is another disease that can cause an overactive bladder. Diabetes hampers the ability of the bladder to send a signal to the brain which conveys whether it is full or completely void. To top it off, as most diabetics will agree, excess glucose in the blood leads to the sensation of excessive thirst. So, on one hand you are drinking more water than usual and on the other, you are unable to empty your bladder. More fluid is retained by the bladder which stretches it somewhat similar to an overfilled water balloon. And we know what happens to an overfilled water balloon. On account of being overstretched more than their capacity, the bladder muscles weaken gradually, causing further damage. The woes do not end here- there is a risk of infection due to leakage from the bladder. Therefore, it serves us well if we closely watch an overactive bladder with a pre-existing condition like diabetes.
3. Caffeine and Alcohol
Studies have suggested that caffeine directly affects the workings of the smooth muscles of the bladder. For those of you who are not aware, smooth muscles are a type of muscle in the body found in the stomach, intestines, urinary bladder, and walls of arteries and veins among other organs. Caffeine causes the urinary bladder to contract involuntarily which in turn leads to the urge to urinate prematurely. This condition is known as urge incontinence.
Alcohol is a diuretic just like caffeine is. It leads to more production of urine and causes the urge to use the restroom more often. Alcohol in a similar action to caffeine also irritates the bladder and impairs the bladder’s ability to send signals to the brain.
It is not exactly menopause that affects the working of your bladder, it is the hormone Estrogen, that is produced in fewer amounts that cause it. Estrogen has a very important role to play in the strength and flexibility of the pelvic and bladder tissues. So during perimenopause, when the production of estrogen decreases the bladder is left wanting nourishment. Eventually, tissues of the bladder muscles weaken and the bladder becomes overactive. Lower estrogen is also associated with the increased muscular pressure around the urethra. A urinary tract infection will also affect the working of the bladder similarly.
This is a complete no-brainer. Obesity creates excess pressure around the bladder muscles which leads to their improper functioning. However, the studies that link obesity, no proper dieting, with an overactive bladder are unclear. The nerves of the pelvic muscle are stretched and strained which triggers the symptoms of incontinence. However, one must avoid self-diagnosing the causes of an overactive bladder and instead contact a urologist for Overactive Bladder Diagnosis & Treatment Options.
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