Heavy Periods and Bladder Control Problems

by Garreth Myers


As the name suggests, ‘Heavy Periods’ is a condition in which a woman experiences heavy bleeding during her menses. The menstrual period may also last longer than it usually would. This is a relatively common problem that a lot of women suffer from and it is also known as menorrhagia. There are several causes for heavy periods and so the first step should be to get a definite diagnosis. While normal menstruation in itself can be quite a bother to most women, heavy periods can be particularly problematic because of the amount of discomfort they cause. The condition is problematic because it can be extremely painful, accompanied with severe cramps, and the extent of blood loss is also likely to cause extreme weakness and fatigue and it could even result in the development of anemia.

Bladder control problems are quite obviously problems that involve a loss of control over bladder function, also known as urinary incontinence. This can be very embarrassing. This is a condition that can either be mild or severe. For instance, urine may leak out when laughing or when one sneezes and in very severe cases, the urge to urinate is so strong that one is unable to wait to get to a toilet. Women with this disorder often suffer from UTIs or Urinary Tract Infections.

Both heavy periods and bladder control problems can be quite embarrassing and can even disrupt normal day to day activities. Moreover, there also exists a correlation between heavy periods and bladder control problems. Different factors can cause heavy menstrual bleeding. These factors can range from problems of the ovaries, polyps, an intrauterine device, complications during pregnancy, medications and other health problems such as thyroid problems, endometriosis or kidney disease. Uterine fibroids can also cause menorrhagia and there is a clear link between uterine fibroids and bladder control problems.

This is true especially in the case of large fibroids. The uterus is quite close to the bladder and if a fibroid is putting pressure on the bladder, the individual may experience a constant urge to visit the toilet. The urgency to pass urine is also caused by this very pressure. At times a very large fibroid is even capable of obstructing the flow of urine in the bladder and therefore stopping its normal functioning. When this happens urination becomes very difficult or almost impossible. This poses quite a serious health risk, which is why a visit to the doctor for early diagnosis is always advisable.

Treatment for heavy bleeding includes either drug therapy or surgery. As for uterine fibroids treatment entails medication and surgery. Treatment mainly depends on the severity of the problem and the underlying cause. Medications and drugs may not help get rid of the fibroids but they could help bring about a reduction in size. Gonadotrophin releasing hormone medications, progestion-releasing intrauterine devices, androgens and a few oral contraceptives are common medications prescribed to treat the problem or rather to reduce the symptoms. Different kinds of surgery exist to treat fibroids. Hysterectomy which means the removal of the uterus is the only permanent solution to get rid of fibroids completely. Mymectomy is a treatment that only operates upon the fibroids and leaves the uterus as it is. However, in the case of a mymectomy, there is no guarantee that the fribroids will not grow again. Focused ultrasound surgery may also be used to get rid of fibroids. This is actually a non-invasive procedure. Other non surgical procedures to destroy fibroids are uterine artery embolization, endometrial ablation and myolysis.

It is important to determine what is causing the bladder control problem and only then eliminate the root cause. Treatment of urinary incontinence may not be that straightforward. Often different treatment methods may be suggested by the medical healthcare professional. Diagnosis is the starting point for any kind of treatment. The more accurate the diagnosis, the more effective the treatment. Treatment involves lifestyle modifications, physical therapy, the use of medical devices, medications, surgery and interventional therapy are different ways to treat the problem. Behavioral techniques include bladder training, regulated trips to the toilet according to a plan and controlling what one drinks and what one eats. Physical therapy involves exercises for the pelvic muscles and electrical stimulation. Urethral inserts and other medical devices are also inserted either into the urethra or vagina to treat the problem. These devices are specially designed for women. Medications such as topical estrogen, imprimaine and anticholinergics may also be prescribed. Surgery is resorted to when all other treatment methods fail. Interventional therapies may be considered instead of surgery for certain patients.

Bladder problems could at times be indicative of more serious health issues and should be treated very seriously. Neglecting bladder problems can pose some serious health consequences. Urinary incontinence doesn’t just affect your physical health and well being, but it can also be damaging to your emotional well being and social life because of the extent of embarrassment that it causes.


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