by Melissa Chichester
Every day, you use your bladder and probably don’t think about all of the important functions it has. Your bladder filters extra fluids and wastes out of your bloodstream. And the rest of your urinary system removes the waste from your body through urine. The average person empties their bladder 6-8 times per day, or up to ten times daily if they drink a lot of fluids. Diuretic medications or drinks can also cause you to urinate frequently.
As you get older, your bladder changes. Normally an elastic organ, it may become less stretchy. When your bladder can’t stretch, it cannot balloon out properly. As a result, it can’t hold as much urine. This can make it more difficult to empty the bladder fully and result in leaking. Luckily, there are things you can do to be proactive and promote bladder health.
Not everyone will have the same bladder problems. The following are common bladder issues that may occur for many reasons. If you suspect you have issues with your bladder, it’s important to talk about it with your doctor:
Some of these issues are a sign of a urinary tract infection (UTI). UTIs may also cause mild fevers and confusion in older adults.
If you have any of the issues above, you may have a bladder problem. Common bladder problems include:
Like other health issues, bladder problems can be the result of many things or a combination of things. Certain behaviors can also impact bladder health. Common causes of bladder problems include:
It can be uncomfortable to speak to someone about bladder problems. However, your doctor is there to support you! Here’s what you can expect when talking to your healthcare provider about bladder health:
You may have questions about bladder health. If you do, write them down or print them out in advance so you don’t forget during your appointment. Here are some questions to consider:
Don’t forget that your doctor is there to help you and answer these questions, even if you feel embarrassed about asking them. There is no reason to feel ashamed when you seek help for your health.
Unfortunately, if you have bladder problems, it may seem like your life is limited or that you can’t go anywhere. You may fear having to urinate and not being able to find a restroom. Luckily, there are a surprising amount of resources available to help people with bladder problems. This includes private toilet access cards that are available digitally for free. You can store your card on your phone and show it to someone when you need to access a restroom that may not be available to the public.
There are also nonprofit organizations that seek to end the stigma around incontinence and provide toolkits, coaching, and more. Learning to live with bladder issues and knowing what kind of help is out there will help you continue to live life as you want to.
In your day-to-day life, you can promote bladder and urinary health by:
Eating a nutritious diet can support bladder health. According to the Urology Care Foundation, the following foods support the bladder:
They also state to avoid spicy food, citrus fruits, tomato-based foods, and artificial sweeteners.
Puritan’s Pride Senior Urinary Support includes two important ingredients—Cranberry Concentrate to support urinary tract health and Vitamin C to support immune function.** Benefits include:
Cranberry is also available as a standalone supplement to assist with urinary health.** In addition to the benefits listed above, cranberries contain proanthocyanidins, a class of polyphenols with antioxidant properties.**
Puritan’s Pride Bladder Assist can give you the support to maintain healthy bladder function and help ensure everyday comfort.** Our supplement features Urox®, a special bladder and urinary tract blend to help with occasional urinary incontinence associated with normal aging.**
Urox® comprises a proprietary blend of the herbs Crataeva nurvala, Equisetum arvense, and Lindera aggregata, which have been traditionally used for urinary health and are now backed by a clinical trial on the exact dose and form used in Bladder Assist.** This award-winning herbal blend is believed to work by enhancing the tone of the bladder, which supports overall bladder health, including helping to reduce the occasional need to urinate at night and helping to reduce overactive bladder during the day and nighttime.**
Bladder problems are a normal part of aging as your body changes. Just like any other health concern, it is something you can speak with your doctor about freely.