Home Remedies for Urinary Incontinence
Incontinence is a condition associated with the urinary tract in which the person is unable to control the urination, and hence, there is an involuntary loss of urine.
There are several types of incontinence and anyone, be it a women or men, can suffer from it. It can be categorized as stress, urge, overflow, functional, transient, bowel incontinence, etc. There are various reasons behind this unintentional leakage, like age, nerve damage, menopause, constipation, enlarged prostate gland, etc.
A person may experience the urine leakage during physical activities while sneezing, when there is a sudden need to urinate, or if he/she is suffering from a physical or mental disability, etc.
There are many home remedies that can do wonders for this condition, and you can get rid of it in no time without spending too much. Here is a handpicked list of wonderful and effective remedies. Have a look at it.
Home Remedies for Urinary Incontinence
Kegel exercises—which involve flexing the same muscles you use to stop the urinary flow—are top on the list of remedies. “Kegels are very useful for early stages of incontinence, and after a surgical repair to maintain pelvic floor tone over time,” says Philippe Zimmern, MD, a professor of urology at UT Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas. A physical therapist can tell you how to do them and how often; You may see an improvement after six to 12 weeks of continued practice. And you’ll have to keep doing the exercises to maintain the benefit, Dr. Zimmern points out.
Vitamin D can also be used to control urinary incontinence because it helps maintain muscle strength. According to a 2010 study published in Obstetrics and Gynecology, women with higher levels of vitamin D have a lower risk of developing pelvic floor disorders, including urinary incontinence. Soak up the early morning sunlight for about 10 minutes daily. It helps the body make vitamin D. Eat more foods rich in vitamin D, such as fish, oysters, egg yolks, fortified milk and other dairy products. You can also take vitamin D supplements, after consulting your doctor.
Gosha-jinki-gan is a Chinese traditional herbal medicine that can be used to treat an overactive bladder and urinary incontinence. It is a combination of several different herbs. Two small studies by Japanese researchers found that this herbal supplement can help improve urinary urgency, frequency and nighttime urination in people with an overactive bladder. Take this herbal supplement after consulting your doctor, who can advise you on the proper dosage for your condition.
“Losing weight if you are overweight is an important step toward reducing the severity of your incontinence,” says Dr. Zimmern. Excess belly fat puts pressure on the bladder and the pelvic muscles. Shedding a few pounds if you are overweight can help restore your bladder control.
Magnesium, an important mineral for proper muscle and nerve function, may also ease incontinent worries. In a small study at Tel Aviv University in Israel, more than half of the 40 women who took magnesium hydroxide pills twice a day had improvements in their urinary incontinence, and did not wake up as many times in the night to go to the bathroom. Some doctors believe that magnesium could relieve incontinence because it reduces bladder muscle spasms and allows the bladder to empty completely. Include magnesium-rich foods, such as corn, potatoes, and bananas in your diet, but talk to your doctor before you start taking magnesium supplements.
Apple cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar works as an excellent tonic for your health. It helps remove toxins from your body and fights bladder infections. Moreover, it assists in losing weight. Excess weight contributes to urinary incontinence, as the fat around your hips and abdomen places extra pressure on your bladder.Mix 1 to 2 teaspoons of raw, unfiltered apple cider vinegar in a glass of water. Add a little raw honey. Drink it 2 or 3 times daily until you are satisfied with the results.
In case you need another reason to quit smoking, add “antidote to incontinence” to the list. Nicotine can irritate the bladder. A small study conducted at the Aristotelian University of Thessaloniki in Greece suggests that heavy smokers are more likely to be incontinent than nonsmokers. “Smokers tend to cough more than non-smokers and long-term, chronic coughing has been considered a risk factor for developing stress urinary incontinence and/or pelvic organ prolapse,” says Dr. Zimmern.
Cleavers is a traditional urinary tonic and helps treat urinary problems. It is particularly used to treat cystitis and overactive bladder. It protects against bladder irritation as it forms a soothing coating along the bladder. Steep 2 to 3 teaspoons of this herb in a cup of hot water for 10 to 15 minutes. Strain and drink this tea 3 times daily until you notice improvement.
If you have incontinence, you might consider acupuncture. Amber Addison, a licensed acupuncturist, has worked with incontinence patients in her private practice in Greenville, SC. The imbalance stems from not only the bladder and kidneys but from other parts of the body such as the lungs and heart, Addison says. “Most of the time it’s a combination of two or more system imbalances that causes overactive bladder.” While Addison emphasizes that it’s not a quick fix, she reassures, “I have had success with every person I have treated for incontinence.”
Cut out caffeine
Caffeine, a diuretic, can contribute to bladder irritation and stimulate muscle contractions, which can both cause incontinence. “Caffeine is known to excite the brain, and since the control of the bladder is in the frontal lobe of our brains, it has an excitatory effect on the bladder as well, along with a slight diuretic effect,” says Dr. Zimmern. “It’s best to avoid or restrict its use when you have incontinence, especially the urge form.”
· Add more fiber to your diet. Lack of fiber contributes to constipation that puts pressure on the bladder.
· Drink sufficient, but not too much, water.
· Lose excess weight.
· Exercise for at least 20 to 30 minutes, 5 days a week.
· Quit smoking. Heavy smokers are at greater risk of developing an overactive bladder.
· Steer clear of alcohol and caffeinated beverages including tea, coffee and some sodas. They can worsen an overactive bladder and contribute to bladder irritation.
· Avoid citrus fruits, tomatoes, vinegars, hot peppers and spicy dishes as they may irritate your bladder.
· Avoid artificial sweeteners. They tend to aggravate urinary urges and frequency.
· Maintain a consistent schedule of urinating every 2 to 4 hours, even if you do not feel like going.
· Keep track of your symptoms to help identify the triggers and help your doctor determine the best course of treatment for you.
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