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What are the signs of bladder problems?

According to Affinity Health, a leading provider of high-quality healthcare, bladder problems can disrupt our daily lives and are more likely to occur as we age.


Around 300 million people worldwide suffer from bladder problems such as bladder control issues (leakage, urinary incontinence, urinary retention), urinary tract infections (UTIs), and chronic kidney disease.


In light of November being Bladder Health Month, Affinity Health explores common signs of bladder problems and the best way to avoid bladder problems.


The bladder is a sac-like organ found in the lower abdomen. Its purpose is to hold urine sent from the kidneys until it is expelled from the body. Bladder problems affect men and women of all ages and can impact your daily activities, sexual health, and emotional well-being.

Signs Of Bladder Problems


The signs and symptoms of bladder problems differ from one person to the next. Symptoms are also affected by the type of bladder problem and its severity. The following are some common signs and symptoms of bladder problems:

  1. Urine leakage
  2. Need to urinate more than eight times per day and more than two times per night
  3. Urge to urinate on the spur of the moment
  4. Pain before, during, or after urinating
  5. Cloudy urine
  6. Bloody urine
  7. Passing only small amounts of urine
  8. Urine that smells strongly
  9. Pain during sexual intercourse
  10. Lower abdominal pain or pressure

Help is available if you are experiencing any of these or other bladder issues. 


“Talk to your doctor or make an appointment with a urologist if you’re bothered by urinary issues,” says Murray Hewlett, CEO of Affinity Health.


“Whether it’s a bladder infection, kidney infection, or another problem, your healthcare provider can identify it and help you find relief.”


Common Causes of Bladder Problems

Many bladder problems are caused by a bacterial infection that enters the urinary tract, including:
  • Sexual intercourse (particularly with new partners)
  • Inadequate urination hygiene
  • Tampons, douches, and spermicides
  • Incontinence of the bowel
Other potential causes of bladder problems that are not caused by infection include:
  • Ageing
  • Constipation
  • Being overweight
  • A chronic, long-lasting cough
  • A bladder lining defect
  • Reaction to allergens
  • Autoimmune response
  • Chemical exposure
  • Constant bladder irritation
  • Urinary obstruction
  • Infections caused by parasites
  • Previous radiation exposure

How To Prevent Bladder Problems

The best way to avoid bladder problems is to practise good personal hygiene and stay hydrated. In addition to the above, Affinity Health recommends the following:

  • Consume a nutritious diet rich in fresh, whole foods
  • Exercise frequently
  • Quit smoking
  • Keep a healthy weight
  • Reduce your intake of bladder irritants such as caffeine, acidic foods, and alcohol
  • Maintain control of chronic conditions such as diabetes

About Affinity Health

Affinity Health is South Africa’s leading provider of health insurance, offering you a range of options at affordable rates including access to the widest national provider network. We understand the importance of having medical insurance that meets your needs, your budget, and your lifestyle. Our range of healthcare products are designed to protect you and your family when it matters the most. We strive to give our clients peace of mind and the highest standard of service at all times. For more information, follow us on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.

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