Do you suffer from a weak bladder? There are many people who complain about the same. If you too have the same problem and want to know how to strengthen weak bladder then do read our current article and know about some ways to strengthen weak bladder.
Weak Bladder: A Short Note
A weak bladder is a condition where we need to quickly rush to the restroom frequently or that we leak while we require to go to restroom. “Over active bladder” is the medical term for a weak bladder.
Our bladder is just a bag that is made of muscles and when the bag fills with urine, its lining stretches. Then, nerves send messages to the brain that tell that you require going to the loo. This bladder lining is too sensitive and it can get irritated quite easily or can become overactive very easily. Generally, caffeine, alcohol, fizzy drinks, and fruit juices can result in a weak bladder.
In order to strengthen weak bladder, we need to make the lining of the bladder become less sensitive or it requires being less active.
Strengthening Weak Bladder With Lifestyle Changes, Exercises, Herbal Remedies, Medications, and Medical Treatments
There is a long list that tells how to strengthen weak bladder. You need to follow the one that works best for you. You need to choose your treatment options depending on the kind of incontinence you suffer from. But, before getting any treatment you need to know that this condition can be managed in an easy manner and there is nothing to worry about it.
Let us know how to strengthen weak bladder in the following section.
Lifestyle Changes To Strengthen Weak Bladder:
You need to have some lifestyle changes so as to strengthen weak bladder. Below are some of them:
Maintain A Healthy Body Weight:
It is important for you to make healthy choices of food and remain physically active and fit so as to help you have and manage a healthy body weight. Having a healthy body weight can be helpful in strengthening a weak bladder.
Drink Enough Of Water:
Water is very much essential for all of us. It is most important to drink plenty of water, at least 8- ounce glasses every day to remain healthy. Water is also a great fluid for the health of your bladder. It must be noted that at least half of the fluid that is taken, must be water. So, drinking enough of water is one of the best ways to strengthen weak bladder.
NOTE: Some people, especially those suffering from heart disease or kidney failure, must require drinking less water. So, it is always important for you to ask your healthcare provider before drinking plenty of water and know about the exact amount of water that you need to take each day.
One of the best ways to ward off bladder issues is to exercise regularly or remain physically active. This not only helps in treating bladder issues, constipation but also help in maintaining a healthy body weight.
Use Washroom Often And Whenever Needed:
You must try and urinate at least every 3-4 hours. This must be noted strictly that holding urine in bladder for quite a long period of time can actually weaken the muscles of your bladder and also can make your bladder get infected.
Empty The Bladder When You Are Urinating:
Keep it in mind, not to rush while urinating. Take enough of time and fully empty your bladder. It can cause a bladder infection in urine remains in the bladder for a longer time period.
Remain In A Relaxed Position While Urinating:
You need to be in a very comfortable or relaxed position when urinating. Relaxing the bladder muscles makes it easier for emptying the bladder
Urinate Properly After Having Sex:
There is another lifestyle change that can help you strengthen weak bladder. Both, men and women must urinate properly right after having sex. This helps in flushing away bacteria that might have entered your urethra while having sex.
After Using Toilet, Wipe From The Front And Back:
Women are required to wipe from the front to the back so as to keep bacteria from entering the urethra. This is very much important after a bowel movement.
Wear loose Fitting Clothes And Cotton Underwear:
One more way you can strengthen weak bladder by lifestyle changes is to wear loose and cotton clothing, especially the underwear. This allows air to keep the area around your urethra dry.
Add Magnesium To Your Diet:
Magnesium is very much essential to strengthen weak bladder. There have been several studies that showed that taking enough of magnesium can help in reducing the urge or having to go for urination. So, it is important for you to add magnesium to your diet.
Exercises To Strengthen Weak Bladder:
Kegel exercises are the primary treatments for stress related incontinence. These kegel exercises, also known as the pelvic floor exercises, are specially designed to strengthen the bladder muscles that supports bladder as well as the muscles that support uterus or the womb and the rectum.
Women having stress incontinence or having a weak bladder, can experience about 70% of the improvement in their symptoms with consistently performing kegel exercises.
Kegel exercises actually work by thickening those muscles that hold the bladder, urethra, and various other organs in right place.
So, kegel exercises are great to strengthen weak bladder and it is recommended to add these exercises to your daily routine.
For performing kegel exercises, you just need to squeeze the pelvic floor muscles. In case you are not sure how to isolate these pelvic floor muscles, simply stop urinating mid-stream when you go to the washroom. Those muscles that are used to cut-off your urine are the ones that you must tighten during the kegel exercises.
It is recommended by The NIDDKD or National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Disease that you should hold each “Squeeze” for 3 seconds. Gradually you can build up to 3 sets for 10 reps each day.(1)
Other Pelvic Floor Exercises:
Apart from the kegel exercises, you can also add some other exercises to target the muscles of the pelvic floor and strengthen weak bladder.
Short contractions work on the fast-twitch muscles which are situated in the pelvic floor. The aim for this exercise is to tighten these muscles as fast as you can and then release them.
In order to perform short contractions, you need to follow the below mentioned steps.
- Start by taking a deep breath while inhalation and then exhale while tightening the muscles of the pelvic floor as quickly as possible, imagining that you are lifting those muscles upward.
- Breathe in while releasing the contraction of the pelvic floor muscle.
- Repeat this exercise 10 times and you need to finish 3 sets.
- You need to aim on doing this complete exercise twice in a day.
Long contractions are meant to help an individual ultimately to achieve a pelvic floor contraction that actually lasts for 10 seconds.
In order to do this long contraction, you should tighten the muscles of your pelvic floor and hold the muscle contraction as long as you can. You might start at 3 seconds and then over time you need to increase it. Repeat this for 10 times of 3 sets.
According to The National Association For Continence, it is recommended for you to perform the short contractions and the long contractions in the same exercise time.(2) These exercises might take 3-6 months before you can see noticeable differences. In order to continue challenging the pelvic floor muscles, you can try performing these exercises in various positions, such as while standing, sitting, and lying down.
Bladder training might help to strengthen weak bladder. This is a form of behavior therapy, and it makes you wait when you feel the urge of urinating, gradually increasing the time intervals between your bathroom visits. This exercise actually helps you train your bladder to hold more amount of urine before you go for emptying it.
First you need to determine how often you actually urinate on an average day. Once you have done this, start training your bladder to hold more amount of urine as long as you can between the washroom breaks, even if you find it uncomfortable. By practicing this for several weeks, you will be able to extend the time between your bathroom trips, and thus can strengthen weak bladder.
Vaginal cones are tool for weight-training of the muscles of the pelvic floor. To begin this, place the vaginal cone inside your vagina. For lifting the cone you need to use the pelvic floor muscles. You need to start using lighter cones at first. Once you are able to hold these cones without any discomfort, you can train the muscles for lifting the heavier vaginal cones. This way you can strengthen your weak bladder.
Herbal Treatments To Strengthen Weak Bladder:
There are also some herbal treatments to strengthen weak bladder. However, you need to check with your healthcare provider before taking any kind of herbal supplements, as they can interact with medicines you might be taking and can also cause unintended side effects.
Chinese Herbal Blends:
GJG or Gosha-jinki-gan is a blend or combination of 10 different traditional Chinese herbs. There are a lot of studies which have been done on this blend of Chinese herbs, and researchers have found that this Chinese herbal blend or the GJG inhibits the bladder and also improves daytime frequency quite significantly. Individuals, who have taken 7.5 mgs of GJG per day, also reported better results on their IPSS or Prostate Symptoms Score, which records the urinary symptoms.
HE or Hachimi-jio-gan is one more Chinese herbal medication which is used to strengthen weak bladder. It is made of 8 natural ingredients, some of which are also found in GJG. There are evidences that HE might have a positive effect on the contraction of the bladder muscle.
Gonoderma lucidum is also known as Lingzhi mushroom which is an extract from the East Asia and is used to treat a lot of problems like hypertension, hepatitis, and cancers.
In a random study, 50 men were found to have better scores for IPSS using this extract. This study recommends 6 mgs of the extract in men who have symptoms of low urinary tract.(3)
This is actually a waste material derived from the cultivation of corn. China to France, several countries are making use of this corn silk as a traditional medicine for several ailments, such as bladder irritation and bedwetting. According to the International Continence Society, it’s known that corn silk might help with strengthening and also restoring mucous membranes in your urinary tract to prevent incontinence.(4)
Capsaicin is found in the chile peppers’ fleshy part and not in the seeds. This is commonly used to treat the pelvic pain syndrome, which usually is a symptom of weak bladder. Studies have shown that peak capacity of the bladder was increased from 106 ml to 302 ml.(5)
You must always talk to your physician before trying any alternative or herbal remedy to strengthen weak bladder. This is because they might cause some unintended side effects. Be very much sure that you purchase your herbs from a reliable source, as herbs from the unreliable sources might be contaminated, and they may not have a standard dose to work on your symptoms.
Medications To Strengthen Weak Bladder:
You might require medications to strengthen weak bladder, especially if other ways of treatment do not work. Antimuscarinics or anticholinergics are the medications used for treating weak bladder. These medicines block some nerve impulses to the bladder, which helps in relaxing the muscles of your bladder, ultimately increasing the capacity of your bladder.
These medications work better if they are taken along with the combination of bladder training. One common plan is that you can try one course of these medication for at least 30 days and if you find them useful, you might be advised by your doctor to continue the same for about 6 months and then after stop them altogether so as to see how you experience the symptoms without the medication.
Medical Treatments To Strengthen Weak Bladder:
Electrical stimulation is actually a painless process which involves delivering of gentle electricity volts, via a vaginal probe for activating and strengthening the muscles of pelvic floor. Sometimes, there is an implantation of a device under the skin of the upper buttock so as to stimulate a nerve known as the sacral nerve, which is connected to the bladder and the pelvic floor.
Vaginal pessery is a flexible ring of silicone that is inserted into the vagina in women where it pushes up on the wall of the vagina and urethra so as to help in supporting the bladder as well as the urethra. You doctor can fit one for you; however, you will require regular checkups so as to ensure that it does not cause irritation in your vagina.
Surgery is required at times for strengthening weak bladder, especially in individuals who experience severe symptoms and who do not respond to any other type of treatment. Surgery intends at improving the storing ability of the bladder and at reducing the pressure in your bladder.
You might require using a catheter for the rest of your life if you undergo the surgery to strengthen weak bladder.
Things To Avoid To Strengthen Weak Bladder:
There are certain things which you need to avoid to strengthen weak bladder. Below are some of them.
- Avoid caffeine, caffeinated foods and drinks like tea, coffee, chocolates and most sodas.
- You also need to avoid or limit alcohol to strengthen weak bladder.
- Avoiding citrus fruits, spicy foods, and tomato based-foods, also help.
- You must also avoid or quit smoking.
- You also need to avoid constipation by consuming lots of high-fiber rich foods, such as vegetables, fruits, and whole grains. Moreover, you can also avoid constipation by drinking plenty of water and by remaining physically active.
NOTE: You also need to test the foods and drinks that can irritate your bladder and eliminate them from your daily diet. Then after, you can reincorporate them one by one in every 3 days at a time. You must eliminate the foods and drinks permanently which actually worsen your symptoms.
Take Home The Advice:
So, above we talked about some of the ways to strengthen weak bladder. If you are suffering from a similar condition, you can try experimenting on any of the above mentioned treatment ways and look what suits best for you. However, it is always a strict advice to consult your doctor before adopting any treatment for your condition.
Let your doctor examine your condition and treat it expertly.