Wellness 15 June 2021

Interstitial Cystitis

  1. Causes of interstitial cystitis
  2. Symptoms of interstitial cystitis
  3. Remedies against interstitial cystitis
  4. Other strategies
  5. Summary

 

Dear Reader,

Interstitial cystitis is a condition that has nothing to do with typical bacterial cystitis.

Starting with the triggering factors and ending with the treatment methods, let’s find out together what the so-called painful bladder syndrome is.

Interstitial cystitis is a chronic condition that involves pressure and pain on the bladder of varying intensity.
The bladder of a person suffering from interstitial cystitis, 9 times out of 10 a woman, sends false signals to the brain making it perceive the need to urinate even when the bladder is empty, or the amount of urine is negligible. This is compounded by a perpetually inflamed and irritated state of the bladder walls and stiffening and deterioration in the most severe cases.

Causes of interstitial cystitis

The definitive and undoubtedly attributable cause of interstitial cystitis does not exist.
We can state with certainty that it does not result from the development of infections resulting from the invasion of pathogens, as in bacterial cystitis.

Seventy percent of patients with interstitial cystitis have defects in the epithelium, the protective inner layer of the bladder. It is usually used to protect the bladder from the toxins contained in the urine. In abnormal conditions, the epithelium cannot prevent the toxic substances from causing irritation the bladder walls.

Other factors, which do not have scientific relevance, may be autoimmune reactions, genetic inheritance, infections, or allergies.

Factors associated with a higher risk of incurring interstitial cystitis are:

  • Gender and age. Women are victims of interstitial cystitis more frequently than men.
    Interstitial cystitis occurs around the age of thirty or beyond.
  • Chronic Pain Disorder. Interstitial cystitis may be associated with other pain-associated disorders, such as irritable bowel syndrome or fibromyalgia.

Symptoms of interstitial cystitis

Symptoms of interstitial cystitis vary from person to person, and it can change over time in response to triggering situations such as menstrual cycle, sedentary lifestyle, stress, physical activity, or sexual activity.

The symptoms of interstitial cystitis are:

  • Pain in the pelvis or between the vagina/scrotum and the anus.
  • Uncontrollable and persistent urge to urinate.
  • Frequent urination, often in small amounts, during the day and night (up to 60 times in 24 hours).
  • Discomfort or pain when filling the bladder.
  • Pain in the sexual intercourse.

Remedies for Interstitial Cystitis

Since the causes of interstitial cystitis are unknown, the treatments currently focus on alleviating the unpleasant symptoms.

You can, for example, combine two or more of these practices, depending on the specific case:

  1. Diet You need to avoid alcohol, spicy and acidic food, chocolate, caffeine, citrus fruits, artificial sweeteners, and tomatoes. In general, anything that is considered an irritant food.
  2. Reduce inflammation Through the administration of classic painkillers/anti-inflammatories or natural ingredients such as quercetin or MSM (an organic compound with anti-inflammatory and healing properties).
  3. Relax your pelvic muscles Through intravaginal massage, electrical therapy, or Reverse Kegel exercises. I have written about these Sport and pelvic floor exercises: How can they help you with cystitis? Cystitis?
  4. Avoid further inflammation of the bladder To prevent infections, such as bacterial cystitis, from worsening the situation, take preventative action using d-mannose. It is a natural ingredient that transports any pathogenic bacteria present out of the bladder.
  5. Repair the epithelium Through the intake of GAGs (hyaluronic acid, glucosamine, and chondroitin).
  6. Bladder instillations With bladder instillation, a catheter fills the bladder with a medical solution. The latter is held in the bladder for 15 minutes and then transported out of the bladder again. This treatment should be repeated every week, for 6-8 consecutive weeks, and then as needed.

A dietary supplement that combines GAGs with the MSM, quercetin, and d-mannose described above is the Dimann Daily.

Other strategies against Interstitial Cystitis

Sometimes you may need stronger remedies to turn off or, at least keep the pain at bay.

  • Quit smoking Many people who are victims of interstitial cystitis know how the habit of smoking can make the pain worse.
  • Bladder rehabilitation If the urgency and frequency of urination do not give respite, you can try to accustom the bladder to contain a greater amount of urine for longer. This can be done, for example, by forcing yourself to go to the bathroom at specific times.
    After a while of starting this practice, you can lengthen the time intervals between urinations.
    This strategy becomes more effective when accompanied by physiotherapy sessions.
  • Physiotherapy and biofeedback Interstitial cystitis often causes painful spasms of the pelvic floor muscles. Your physiotherapist can teach you exercises that will help you strengthen and relax your pelvic floor muscles simultaneously.
  • Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation There is a special machine that emits gentle pulses to the bladder. Beginning under the supervision of a physiotherapist, you can act on pain of interstitial cystitis through the daily use of this technique.
  • Relaxation therapies Stress reduction, hypnotherapy, and acupuncture have been shown to play an important role in some subjects.

This article is but a brief introduction to the subject of interstitial cystitis.
In this case, as never before, there are no shortcuts against this type of cystitis: relying on a specialist who follows us over time becomes essential!

I hug you,

font-firma

Summary

 

In this article, we learned that interstitial cystitis:

  • It is not related to the presence of infection/bacteria in the bladder.
  • It is a chronic condition that involves pain and pressure in the bladder.
  • It is characterized by perennial inflammation of the bladder walls.
  • It cannot be linked to a specific cause.
  • Interstitial cystitis can be alleviated through changes in certain dietary and non-dietary habits, muscle relaxation techniques, and various procedures designed to reduce bladder pain and inflammation.

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