Smoking is known to be the cause of many health problems and diseases, so it shouldn’t be of much surprise that it can negatively affect your bladder health. If you suffer from incontinence and aren’t sure why, it could be because of your smoking habit.
Studies have shown that smoking can increase the risk of bladder leaks – stress incontinence, in particular – which is the most common type. Stress incontinence results in stress putting pressure on the bladder, commonly occurring when you cough, sneeze, or laugh.
So, how can smoking affect bladder health? Well, some theories suggest that nicotine can induce contractions and other toxins in cigarettes can irritate the bladder.
Additionally, a chronic smoker’s cough can put stress on the bladder, contributing to leaks.
Smoking is also a risk factor for bladder cancer, which can present itself early as incontinence.
Lastly, interstitial cystitis is a painful condition where you feel constant pressure on the bladder, which increases urgency and leaks. This condition can be aggravated by cigarette smoke. Smoking cessation has been shown to improve interstitial cystitis.
There are hundreds of reasons to quit smoking and its effect on your bladder is just another one. No good comes out of smoking, so if you were looking for another reason to quit, we hope you finally make the steps to stopping thanks to this news.
Join a support group or speak to your doctor about your options to not only help you quit but make sure you quit forever.