One in six women over age 18 experiences a sudden, urgent need to urinate;sometimes even emptying the bladder without warning, according to the National Association for Continence (NAFC). Whether it’s a once-in-a-while thing or a chronic problem, such incidents are an indication of overactive bladder (OAB). The symptoms of OAB include:
· Constantly having to pee (more than eight times a day or more than once during the night); · Urgency (needing to rush to the bathroom); and, sometimes, · Leakage or accidents (associated with sudden urgency).
“Women may be embarrassed to tell their doctors, or they think it’s just the way they are,” says Nancy Muller, Ph.D., executive director of NAFC. “I’ll hear women say, ‘Oh, I have a tiny bladder.’ But bladders don’t suddenly shrink!” Instead of making excuses or joking about it, tell your doctor what’s going on. He or she will be able to help you find the best ways to tackle your OAB. Read on to learn common causes of OAB and effective strategies to prevent, minimize or even stop the symptoms.