Diabetes is the common health condition in which a person has too much sugar in their blood. In some, blood sugar levels may rise and fall dramatically throughout the day, creating frustrating symptoms. In many cases of diabetes, doctors note coinciding problems with urinary health. Degraded bladder control and a tendency toward infection can affect daily living and overall quality of life. Here, we discuss some of the ways that diabetes can affect urinary health and what might be done to manage these problems.
Common Diabetes-Related Urinary Problems
An overactive bladder may lead to a sudden and strong urge to urinate. This urge stems from contractions or spasms within the bladder. People with overactive bladder may have to urinate as often as every hour throughout the day and at least a few times at night. It is also possible that urinary incontinence and leakage may coincide with other symptoms of overactive bladder. This condition may improve with Kegel exercises and bladder training or may need medical therapy such as prescription medication or electrical stimulation.
Urine retention is characterized by an inability to fully empty the bladder during urination. When urine remains in the bladder, the risk of a bladder infection, kidney infection and damage, and urine leakage develops. Bladder training, medication, lower abdominal massage to assist bladder emptying, and Kegel exercises may help offset urine retention. In some cases, urine may need to be drained with a catheter. A urologist may also suggest installing a urethral stent to support appropriate bladder drainage.
Diabetics may need to urinate much more frequently compared to individuals with normal blood sugar levels. The fact that diabetes can also cause dry mouth and a need to drink water often throughout the day doesn’t help. Furthermore, diabetes naturally increases thirst. This begins in the kidneys, which increase function to filter excess sugar from the blood. With too much sugar to remove via kidney function alone, the brain draws water from bodily tissues to dilute the blood and circulate sugar into the urine. Depleted hydration from tissues creates thirst and, naturally drinking more, a person will have a greater need to urinate. While staying hydrated is vital to maintaining kidney health, the best way to decrease frequent urination is to maintain normal blood sugar levels.
Patients with diabetes have a need for collaboration among their healthcare providers. Our experienced team can provide personal care to improve and support ongoing urologic health. To schedule a visit at Collin County Urology, call (972) 403-5425.This entry was posted in Bladder Control, Overactive Bladder. Bookmark the permalink.
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