Although it might not seem like it, overactive bladder (OAB) is a common condition that affects millions of people across the world. In the United States, about 33 million people live to suffer from this condition. Roughly 40 percent of women and 30 percent of men in this country have OAB1.
What Overactive Bladder?
OAB is not a disease. Rather, it is a name used to classify a range of urinary symptoms associated with having sudden urges to urinate with little control. While not everyone suffering from OAB leaks urine, there are those who leak urine when the urge arises, which is known as incontinence.
For an OAB diagnosis, doctors conduct several general tests. First, they will check medical history, conduct a physical test focusing on the genitals and abdomen, test the urine for any infections or blood, and conduct a neurological test to check for abnormal reflexes.1
Specialized tests may include urodynamic tests that assess how well your bladder is functioning. These tests may include measuring urine left in your bladder, measuring urine flow rate, and testing bladder pressure.2
Overactive Bladder Effects
At the most basic level, when left untreated OAB tends to cause inconvenience to individuals. Having to make numerous trips to the bathroom affects work, sleep quality, your social life, exercising, etc. Moreover, there are psychological effects that come with the condition. For instance, you may feel more nervous, which hampers your willingness to engage in everyday activities such as going out.
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These effects are significant enough to warrant seeking treatment. Below, we will explore some of the essential oils that can be used to supplement OAB treatment, in addition to providing a range of other health benefits.
Essential Oils For Overactive Bladder
Ylang-ylang oil is known to have nervine and sedative properties, which are useful in remedying the symptoms as they relax the bladder, better controlling the urge to urinate. To use this essential oil, rub it on the lower abdominal region after diluting with a carrier oil.3
Clary Sage Essential Oil
A study designed to determine the efficacy of clary sage essential oil in helping control OAB when compared to the lavender essential oil found that clary sage is more potent in producing the desired results. 4 In the study, five percent of both lavender essential oil and clary sage essential oil in an almond carrier oil, or almond oil alone, was given to patients for inhalation. The study found that inhaling five percent clary sage essential oil can potentially mitigate stress during urodynamic tests. As such, clary sage can also be used to help control OAB symptoms.
Pumpkin Seed Oil
A 2014 study found that pumpkin seed oil has positive effects in remedying the symptoms of OAB.5
Lavender Essential Oil
Lavender is a staple among the essential oils for overactive bladder. It is effective owing to its relaxing and calming properties, which reduce stress, a known agitator of OAB. Its sedative properties have particularly been known to solve nocturia, an OAB symptom occurring at night. To use this oil, simply rub a pea-size of the oil diluted with a carrier oil onto your lower abdominal region.
Combining the use of these essential oils with eliminating OAB risk factors from your life and additional OAB remedies can ultimately reduce or relieve symptoms of OAB and improve the overall quality of life