Weak and Overactive Bladder–Causes and Effective Treatments

by Sally on August 28, 2010

Often referred to as urge or urinary incontinence, an overactive or weak bladder can cause incontinence (abrupt and usually unstoppable need to urinate) and/or frequent urges to urinate despite having a nearly empty bladder. As many as 1 in 11 adults are said to be affected by a weak bladder. Anyone can experience it; however, older adults are more commonly affected. This condition can be embarrassing and even life threatening in extreme cases. That’s why it’s so important to be diagnosed and subsequently treated as soon as possible.

Muscle spasms within the bladder are responsible for the urgent need to urinate. Weak KidneyA weak bladder or overactive bladder is normally caused by troubles with muscles as well as nerves. In a normal functioning bladder, certain muscles contract and relax periodically to signal that the bladder is full. The nervous system controls these actions and when they are not functioning correctly, the result is the frequent urges. Malfunctions in nervous system are usually at fault and can due to a variety of conditions such as injury to the spine, a stroke, multiple sclerosis or even diabetic neuropathy. Less serious and more common possibilities include urinary tract infections or bladder stones. And in rare cases, no cause is detected.

Common treatment recommendations for a weak and overactive bladder are as follows: rehabilitation of the pelvic muscles kegel exercises, strengthening of the vaginal muscles with small weight training, and electrical stimulation of the pelvic-floor. Other treatments may include behavioral therapy, which can include bladder training (involves resisting the sudden urge to urinate) and creating a regular schedule to use the bathroom, which will decrease the risk of accidental voiding of the bladder. Certain medications like Oxybutynin can be used in combination with other treatments as well.

It is important to visit a doctor if you experience frequent urges to urinate or exhibit any other symptoms. Don’t try to self-diagnose and try to treat yourself, as many can mistake other conditions such as a weak bladder can be mistaken for a weak kidney and vice versa. So, if you have been suffering with an overactive bladder, get a diagnosis, and then seek treatment, as there are viable treatments available to you.