What causes an overactive bladder?

Overactive bladder (OAB) occurs when the muscles of the bladder involuntarily contract more frequently and at inappropriate times. Your mind reads those contractions as an urgent need to urinate.

There are two types of OAB: (1) Dry OAB: You will make it to the bathroom on time, but it can cause a lot of worry and anxiety; (2) Wet OAB when you may not always make it without leaking urine.

Filling and emptying your bladder is a complex interplay of kidney function, nerve signals and muscle activity. A problem anywhere in this system can contribute to an overactive bladder and urge incontinence.

Most of the time, doctors don’t know what causes this mix between your bladder and your brain so that it results in OAB.

According to Mayo Clinic, several conditions may contribute to the signs and symptoms of an overactive bladder, including:

(1) Neurological disorders, such as Parkinsons disease, strokes and multiple sclerosis;

(2) High urine production might occur with high fluid intake, poor kidney function or diabetes;

(3) Medications that cause a rapid increase in urine production or require that you take them with lots of fluids;

(4) Acute urinary tract infections that can cause symptoms similar to an overactive bladder;

(5) Abnormalities in the bladder, such as tumors or bladder stones;

(6) Factors that obstruct bladder outflow - enlarged prostate, constipation or previous operations to treat other forms of incontinence;

(7) Excess consumption of caffeine or alcohol.

Living with overactive bladder can be frustrating, with the urge to urinate occurring often and suddenly, especially when the causes are unknown.

People who have an overactive bladder should talk to their doctor about all symptoms they may be having - even if they don't seem to be related to any condition. This might help to keep an eye out for other possible health issues....