The causes of overactive bladder (OAB) are associated with factors that are often unavoidable—including involuntary muscle contractions as a result of a neurological disorder or obstruction. This makes preventing the condition, itself, difficult. Therefore, OAB prevention focuses on reducing the risk or prevalence of OAB symptoms by making lifestyle and diet changes to avoid triggers that are known to cause those symptoms.
Establish a Fluid-Intake Schedule
Your doctor could prescribe a plan that regiments the amount and timing of your fluid consumption. This will ensure that you aren’t drinking too much or too little. It could also compliment a bladder-training treatment plan.
Limit Caffeine, Alcohol, and Citrus
Caffeine, alcohol, and citrus have been proven to exacerbate the symptoms of OAB, so limiting the intake of fluids such as coffee, sodas (especially those with caffeine), citrus juices, and alcoholic beverages could help in minimizing frequency, urgency, and incontinence.
Get More Fiber
Constipation can trigger or worsen OAB symptoms. A diet of fiber-rich foods—such as whole grains, legumes, and vegetables such as broccoli and spinach—can help maintain a healthy digestive tract and lower the risk of constipation. Furthermore, fiber is essential to maintaining a healthy weight, which also helps to manage OAB symptoms.
Limit Acidic and Spicy Foods
Acidic foods—citrus fruits and tomatoes—as well as spicy foods can irritate the bladder and worsen the symptoms of OAB.
Excess weight can cause a number of health problems, including an increased risk of OAB. Research has shown that losing weight can decrease the severity and frequency of symptoms in obese people with OAB. Maintaining a healthy weight through exercise and a balanced diet is a valuable part of a healthy lifestyle.