How you can cope with MS bladder problems

MS bladder problems can be embarrassing, but help is available. The first step in coping with MS bladder problems is to see your doctor. Your doctor will determine the cause of the problem and recommend a course of treatment, which may include medications or intermittent catheterization, which involves draining the bladder using a thin tube inserted through your urinary opening.

Here are a few other things you can do to cope:

Follow your treatment plan:

  • Follow the treatment plan that you and your doctor have discussed. Take any medications exactly as prescribed.
  • If you have a urinary tract infection (UTI), continue to take the full course of treatment, even if you feel better after a few days. This can help prevent the bacteria from becoming resistant to antibiotics.
  • Ask your doctor or pharmacist when you should expect the medication to start working, which side effects to watch for, and when to return for a follow-up appointment. Contact your doctor or pharmacist if you notice any symptoms that worry you.

Keep drinking fluids:

  • Do not restrict your fluid intake – this can affect the kidneys and cause bladder irritation.
  • Drink 6 to 8 glasses of fluid daily. Don't drink large amounts of fluid at once, especially before going out or going to bed. Instead, try to spread your fluid intake out over the day by drinking smaller amounts more often.
  • Avoid caffeine and alcohol, which can irritate the bladder and worsen your bladder symptoms.

Wear absorbent pads if needed:

  • If you are concerned about leaking urine, try wearing an absorbent pad. Many different sizes and absorbencies are available. Some are quite discreet and look more like a sanitary napkin. Your pharmacist can help you find the product that's right for you.

Following these tips and seeking help from your doctor will help you get your MS bladder problems under control.

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