Do You Suffer From Internal Cystitis?
Interstitial cystitis is a condition also known as painful bladder syndrome or bladder pain syndrome. Individuals with this condition experience recurring pain and discomfort of the bladder and the surrounding soft tissues of the pelvic floor.
What are the symptoms of Interstitial Cystitis?
Often times symptoms include an urgent need to urinate, frequency of urination, as well as pain of the pelvic region. Pain is aggravated with the filling of the bladder and subsequently lessons after one voids. The pain one experiences may also radiate beyond the immediate pelvic area to the low back, upper legs, vulva and penis. Yes, this is a condition that affects both male and female.
In women symptoms may intensify during times of hormonal fluctuation. The symptoms of interstitial cystitis mimic those of a bladder infection. Oddly enough, bacteria is not often found in urine samples. Most often patients affected have small, bleeding, struggling to heal wounds, inside of the bladder. Interstitial cystitis pain naturally depends upon the degree or severity of ones condition. Chronic or long term pain may result from those suffering from interstitial cystitis.
What causes Interstitial Cystitis? (Bladder Pain Syndrome)
The pain of interstitial cystitis may originate from an irritated bladder as well as from nearby muscles or nerves and sometimes even from other parts of the body. When the soft tissues and muscles of the pelvic floor become involved one may experience spasms deep and/or a heavy burning sensation that makes sitting uncomfortable.
The most common triggers that provoke interstitial cystitis involve ones diet. Certain foods, such as caffeinated beverages, coffees/teas, fruit juices, (yes cranberry), and tomato products are often irritants to the bladder wall causing pain or discomfort. Hormone fluctuation, chemicals such as those in pools and whirlpools, scented laundry and personal hygiene products, bubble baths, are all capable of producing flair ups. Smoking, the number one cause of bladder cancer, is an especially harmful bladder irritant.
Like any condition, it’s imperative to act swiftly to address this condition. If the pain is ignored, it may become more intense and thusly more difficult to treat. Those who choose to ignore symptoms may end up suffering needlessly.
There are some steps one may take if one suffers from interstitial cystitis:
- Understanding your dietary considerations
- Effective communication with your health care providers
- Adapt to physical relaxation techniques
- Develop a support system with your family and friends
- Get involved with a professional support group
- Realize all aspects of interstitial cystitis and know what to look out for, and
- Know alternative options available.
Jean McConnell, MS, PT, ATC is the owner of Pinnacle Health Concepts physical therapy located in Boardman, OH. You may reach her at 330-480-9362.