An overactive bladder (irritable bladder) is a common condition where there is a pressing and/or rapid and urgent sensation of needing to urinate. This feeling of urgency may or may not occur frequently and can be difficult to control, resulting in urinary incontinence (the involuntary loss of control of the urine). An overactive bladder may be the result of ineffective urination where the bladder looses its muscluar tone. It has an inability to hold onto the 300ml capacity of urine and therefore frequency of urination is experienced.
Helping the tone to return to the bladder can be achieved by slowly increasing your water intake to the recommended 2 liters/ day. You can do this by increasing 250mls/ week. This helps the bladder to tone as well as ensuring that the body is eliminating adequate amounts of wastes. Improving the tonicity of the bladder also helps to ensure that there is an increased removal of metabolic wastes and reduced inflammatory irritation. These both will further contribute to an overactive bladder.
Some other causes may be associated with:
You may also consider addressing any Kidney deficiencies as the bladder, urinary system and Kidneys all influence each other. An overactive bladder in Chinese Medicine can be attributed to dampness and weak Kidney energy.
The kidneys are a pair of organs situated at the back of the abdomen, below the diaphragm on each side of the spine just under the rib cage and weigh about 150gm each. Its functions are to:
Healthy kidneys act like a filter to remove wastes and fluids from the circulating blood, they keep the proper balance of salts and acids in the body and produce hormones. Every day our kidneys filter 200 litres of blood which is an essential process and they remove about 2 litres of waste products which are diluted in water. To remove this waste and extra water, blood enters the kidney through the renal artery and is then cleaned in the kidney as it passes through tiny filters called nephron. One kidney contains about one million nephrons and each nephron contains a filtering apparatus called a glomerulus. Cleaned, fresh blood then returns to the circulation via the renal vein and the wastes taken from the blood via filtration are excreted via the bladder and urine.