7 Best Remedies for Urinary Incontinence

7 Best Remedies for Urinary Incontinence

Urinary incontinence is an embarrassing and inconvenient condition characterized by leakage of urine from the bladder or the inability to control urine. It is very common, especially among older adults. In fact, estimates are that approximately 25 million Americans suffer from urinary incontinence.

Fortunately, there are things you can do at home to treat urinary incontinence. Before we talk about them, let’s take a closer look at the different types of incontinence, and what causes them.

Types and Causes of Urinary Incontinence

There are three main types of urinary incontinence:

  • Urge incontinence occurs when an overactive or hyperactive bladder causes an intense, sudden need to urinate resulting in involuntary loss of urine.
  • Stress incontinence occurs when certain activities, such as coughing, sneezing, laughing or vigorous exercise put pressure on the bladder, causing urine to be released.
  • Overflow incontinence occurs when you are unable to fully empty your bladder, leading to a frequent dribbling or leakage of urine.

As a rule, incontinence is not a diagnosis in and of itself. Rather, it is an indication of an underlying condition. That being the case, it is very important to be evaluated by a doctor in case your incontinence indicates a serious condition, such as cancer. Here are some of the most common causes of incontinence:

  • As we age our pelvic muscles weaken, which can make bladder control more difficult
  • The experience of giving birth can weaken the pelvic floor muscles
  • Enlarged prostate
  • Menopause
  • Urinary stones
  • Urinary tract infection
  • Constipation
  • Nerve damage.

In addition, certain foods and drinks may contribute to incontinence, as can some prescription medications.

Treatments for incontinence include:

  • Drugs known as anticholinergics or antimuscarinics work to control bladder spasms, and are also sometimes prescribed for the treatment of overactive bladder.
  • In certain cases, Botox may be injected into the bladder to increase its capacity.
  • Protective pads and panty liners are not exactly a treatment, but they are frequently used to help prevent embarrassing situations where urine leaks through clothing.
  • In extreme cases where normal remedies do not work, surgery may be required to cure incontinence. Some procedures work to support the bladder or urethra, while other involve inserting small nerve stimulators to help strengthen the muscles around the bladder.

Best Remedies for Urinary Incontinence

Now that you understand the causes of urinary incontinence, it’s time to talk about the best natural remedies.

urinary incontinence kegel
Kegel exercises. The Kegel muscles are the muscles in the pelvic floor. To get an idea of where they are, the next time you are urinating, stop the flow – the muscles you use to do that are your Kegels. To exercise your Kegels, empty your bladder and then contact the muscle. Hold it for 8 seconds (you may need to work your way up to holding this long.) Next, relax the muscle for a count of 8 seconds. Repeat this exercise 8-12 times, 2 times a day. As a bonus, exercising your Kegel muscles can also improve your sex life by improving your control and making orgasms more intense.
Eggs in the package on wooden table
Get enough Vitamin D. Vitamin D helps to keep your muscles strong, and many people are deficient. To get your daily dose, get outside into the sun for 10=15 minutes. If you are worried about skin cancer or live in an area that doesn’t get much sense, add Vitamin D-rich foods like eggs and fortified milk to your diet. You can also take a supplement if you prefer.
Delicious Grilled Mexican Corn
Add magnesium to your diet. Magnesium is an important micronutrient that helps to improve muscle and nerve function. Magnesium-rich foods include corn, potatoes, avocados, yogurt and bananas. You can also take a magnesium supplement.
In pose of lotus
Get fit. Carrying excess weight can put pressure on your bladder, making it more difficult to hold urine in. Also, exercising and improving your muscle tone overall will help with your pelvic muscles. Yoga may be particularly beneficial for this because it helps to strengthen your Kegel muscles. Not only that, but yoga is a great stress reliever, and stress can exacerbate incontinence.
Stop drinking coffee
Cut back on caffeine. Many of us rely on multiple cups of coffee, tea or caffeinated soda to get us through the day. However, caffeine is a stimulant that can irritate the bladder and cause it to contract. Caffeine is also a natural diuretic, so it may make you feel like you need to urinate more frequently. Try cutting back to one cup a day. Also, remember that caffeine is found in things besides coffee. Be careful not to consume too much tea or chocolate. If you are accustomed to having a lot of caffeine, cut back gradually to avoid nasty withdrawal symptoms like headaches and irritability.
If you smoke cigarettes or cigars, try to quit. Like caffeine, nicotine is a stimulant that can overexcite the bladder and cause it to contract. Not only that, but because it irritates the lungs, smoking may cause you to cough which can apply strong pressure on the bladder, making leakage more likely.
urinary incontinence no soda
Eliminate artificial sweeteners. The artificial sweeteners found in diet soda and other sugar-free beverages are very irritating to the bladder. Try to cut out foods containing aspartame, acesulfame K and saccharine. According to the National Society for Continence, these ingredients are far more likely increase the urge to urinate, and the frequency of urination, than beverages sweetened with soda.

In addition to the remedies listed above, it is also important to do whatever you can to minimize stress and anxiety, both of which can exacerbate incontinence. Make sure to get enough sleep, and consider adding meditation to your daily routine. Even 10 or 15 minutes of quiet meditation a day can make a big difference in terms of managing stress. Even though this may seem counterintuitive, it is also important to stay well-hydrated. Make sure to get enough water. Finally, do what you can to avoid foods that cause inflammation, such as sugar and trans fats. If you follow this advice, you can get rid of urinary incontinence for good.

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