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How to treat interstitial cystitis

Interstitial cystitis is a bladder disease. It is characterized by persistent pelvic pain and insistent need to urinate usually all day and night and sometimes 50 times every day. Pain can be felt while the bladder fills up and relieves after urinating.

Sometimes symptoms of interstitial cystitis have similarities with the symptoms of urinary tract infections but there are no signs of infections or presence of bacteria. Women are more susceptible to this condition than with men.

Symptoms of interstitial cystitis

  • A strong and urgent need to urinate or called urinary urgency.
  • Urinary frequency where there is a decreased capacity of the bladder and cause frequent urination in smaller amounts day and night.
  • Sensation of pain, pressure and soreness around the pelvis, bladder and perineum.
  • Dispareunia or painful sexual intercourse.
    interstitial cystitis

    For mild discomfort, take the prescribed over-the-counter medications such as ibuprofen and aspirin to lessen the pain.

  • Pain becomes severe during menstrual periods


  • Use the suggested drug such as tricyclic antidepressants to lessen the hyper activation of the nerves in bladder wall.
  • Prescribed oral antihistamines to lessen allergic reactions due to interstitial cystitis.
  • For mild discomfort, take the prescribed over-the-counter medications such as ibuprofen and aspirin to lessen the pain.
  • Apply a warm or cold compress on the site to lessen the pain. Place a heating pad or a hot water bottle over the abdomen for at least 20 minutes to lessen the pain and the spasms. Wrap heat in a towel or a cloth before placing to the area to prevent burning the skin and worsen the condition. For pelvic floor flares, place heating pad wrapped with a protective layer inside underwear or pants. Cold compress in the form of frozen water bottle wrapped with a towel and placed on the affected area to lessen the inflammation. Avoid ice or heat directly on the skin.
  • Quit smoking to lessen the symptoms.
  • Perform regular exercises with the help of the physical therapist to loosen tight muscles and using techniques such as deep tissue massage or myofacial release.
  • Drink at least 6-8 glasses of water to prevent constipation and keep the body well hydrated. It also prevents making the urine becoming acidic.
  • An Epsom salt bath is also beneficial to lessen the pain in the bladder and relax the muscles.

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