Home remedies for interstitial cystitis (painful bladder syndrome)

In this article, we will talk about home remedies for interstitial cystitis. When the muscles of the bladder get inflamed, it can cause shooting pain in the abdomen. We call this condition interstitial cystitis (IC) or painful bladder syndrome. One feels the urge to urinate often and experiences pressure and pain. This autoimmune disease leads to severe discomfort and a reduction in the lifestyle of the person.

Home remedies for interstitial cystitis

Causes of Interstitial Cystitis

Though the exact cause is not known, the main reasons for the IC are hormones and immune conditions. The risk factors include gender and age. If you are a woman and over 30 years of age, the chances of getting IC is more. Here are some more risk factors:

  • Recurring bacterial infection
  • Dysfunctional floor muscles in the pelvis
  • Trauma to the lining of the bladder
  • Autoimmune disorders
  • Chronic pain disorders like fibromyalgia or Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

Common triggers that cause flaring of the symptoms are sexual activity and exercise. Other conditions include stress, sitting for a long time, and menstruation. Getting a urinary tract infection (UTI) will worsen the conditions of IC.

Symptoms of painful bladder syndrome

The people affected by interstitial cystitis will pass urine as many as 30 – 40 times a day. Other symptoms of painful bladder syndrome include the following:

  • Pelvic pain that is severe, stabbing kind
  • Pain in the region between the anus and the vagina
  • Pain during sexual intercourse
  • Severe pain when the bladder becomes full, sudden relief when it empties

Types of flare-ups

The flare-ups fall into three categories depending on where the pain occurs. Here is a look at them:

  1. Bladder wall flares: During this type of flare-ups, the person feels like glass pieces are scraping against the bladder. This gets aggravated further if you have food or drink sensitivity.
  2. Muscle flare-ups: The bladder muscle can go into a spasm. The person experiences an aching feeling.
  3. Pelvic floor flare-ups: This is a burning feeling in the vaginal area. Riding a bike, having sexual intercourse, or sitting for long periods can cause this flare-up. It feels as if something is falling out of the vagina.

Food or drink causing sensitivity

The reactions get triggered according to the body type. Lessening the intake of acidic foods will lessen the flare-ups. Here are some food items you can avoid:

  • Alcohol
  • Citrus fruits
  • Ketchup
  • Chocolates
  • Processed meat
  • Onion
  • Cheese
  • Coffee
  • Fizzy drinks.

Also Read: How to stop drinking alcohol naturally

Home remedies for interstitial cystitis

1. Kegel exercises for strengthening the pelvic floor

This is an effective way for interstitial cystitis treatment, but you must check with your doctor about which pelvic muscles need strengthening. If you aggravate an already stiff pelvic muscle, it will make the symptoms worse.

Sit down and fold your legs, so the heels touch each other. The Kegel muscles are the ones you use to urinate. So, pretend you are urinating. This will add strength to the Kegel muscles. You must do this for five to six seconds. Then, relax and wait for two or three seconds. Repeat this cycle for 8-10 times.

2. Take apple cider vinegar to cure painful bladder syndrome

If you take apple cider vinegar, it will remove the toxins from the body. It balances the pH in the body and prevents the growth of bacteria. The bacteria might cause UTI. The apple cider vinegar is one of the best home remedies for interstitial cystitis.

  • Mix one or two teaspoons in a glass of water.
  • You can add honey to improve the taste.
  • Drink this both in the morning and in the evening to get good relief.
  • Avoid taking the concentrated form of the vinegar as this might cause oesophageal burns.

Also Read: Health benefits for acv

3. Increased water intake for interstitial cystitis cure

One thing you must avoid is lessening the water intake. Even if you urinate more times, you need the water to stay hydrated. Urinating reduces the toxins and other irritants present in the water. Water helps reduce inflammation and decreases the possibility of constipation. Constipation is an irritant that triggers IC.

You must take more than the usual amount of water you always take. Instead of drinking it by the glassful, sip the water a little at a time. This helps lessen the frequency of urination.

4. Pressure or support therapy for cystitis treatment

You can use the back support that pregnant women use to get relief. It works well by giving support to the muscles and pelvic floor. You also have the wearable type of body support devices that you may wear under your clothes. Muscle stimulators and pelvic stimulators are also used for getting relief. 

5. Heat-cold therapy for bladder infection treatment

A combination of heat and cold helps to ease the pain. This is one of the best home remedies for interstitial cystitis. It helps to reduce the swelling and ease the stiffness of the muscle. Use a simple water bottle to raise the heat of the bladder. Keep this up for ten minutes. The heat soothes the bladder wall.

When you have a pelvic floor flare, numbing the abdominal area proves useful. You can use a bag of frozen vegetables or an ice pack. Be sure not to do either the heat or cold therapy for more than 10 minutes at a time.

6. Spinach for treating cystitis naturally

One of the well-known home remedies for interstitial cystitis is spinach. The antioxidants in spinach are useful for dealing with all types of infection. This prevents damage to the healthy body cells.

You can prepare it in salad form or cook it like any vegetable and eat it. Do this daily until you feel an easing of the symptoms. Or, you could make a smoothie of spinach with other vegetables and have it. This helps ease the pain due to IC.

7. Baking soda is one of the natural remedies for painful bladder syndrome

Another popular home remedy for interstitial cystitis is the use of baking soda. Baking soda is alkaline, and so it reduces the acidic content of the body. The burning sensation will ease. Add 2 teaspoons to a glass of water. Have this three times a day.

Many people mistake interstitial cystitis for UTI. But, it is not a bacterial condition, and any antibiotics you take for this will not work. Wear loose clothing and quit smoking. Do not try anything your doctor has not prescribed. Try our simple but effective home remedies for interstitial cystitis.



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Anoop Sharma

About Anoop Sharma

Anoop Sharma is an IT professional, freelance health writer and creator of www.medicinalplantsanduses.com. He is passionate about helping others learn about health issues and their natural remedies, yoga and healthy food.

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