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What An Overactive Bladder Means For Your Brain Health

Overactive bladder is a condition that leads to a sudden urge to urinate. Some folks with OAB also have urinary leakage, which is called incontinence.

The symptoms of OAB are believed to be due to a misconnection between your brain and your bladder, but the mechanism is not completely understood. OAB symptoms might affect up to 30 percent of men and 40 percent of women in the country, according to a survey.

OAB can be very uncomfortable and even painful sometimes. It can also greatly influence your social life and your functioning during daily life. Research shows that depression, anxiety, and stress are much higher in those with OAB.

In a study done in 2011, people who said their OAB was “bothersome” were greatly more likely to have low work productivity and enjoyment of life when compared to those with minimal OAB symptoms.

But there is treatment available to help you. Meeting with a mental health expert might be your path to improving the quality of your life.

Research reveals that some forms of therapy might not only improve the anxiety and depression that comes from OAB but even help the symptoms of OAB itself.

Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is a type of psychotherapy that research suggests might help treat depression and anxiety to improve your quality of life.

CBT focuses on finding unhelpful thought patterns of behavior and thinking. It then shows you strategies to help your problem-solving and create self-confidence.

To help those with OAB deal with a sudden urge to urinate, mental health experts might use CBT training such as:

  • lifestyle changes
  • bladder training
  • self-monitoring
  • deep breathing
  • muscle relaxation

In a 2020 study, scientists found that people with OAB who got a specialized form of CBT  showed a large improvement in symptoms.

Remember, no psychotherapy should replace the medical treatments prescribed by your doctor who should be treating you for OAB. Instead, use CBT with the help of a mental healthcare expert to aid your OAB treatment.

Author: Steven Sinclaire

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