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The [Dreaded] IC Flare-Up and How to Treat

ic-flare-up-hot-water-bottleIf you suffer from Interstitial Cystitis, you know how annoying and frustrating an IC flare-up can be.  Whether it lasts a few hours or a few days, that incessant urge to visit the restroom, the irritation, the pain– it’s the worst.  Intensity of flare-ups vary depending on each woman and the specific flare– it could be just a little bit annoying or it could be debilitating, causing you to miss school or work for a day or two.  Our goal as practitioners is to do what we can to repair your bladder and keep you free of flares, but if you end up in the midst of one, this may help.

There are different ways you can experience an IC flare-up, and what you’re feeling can help pin-point exactly what’s going on inside.

  1. 1.  Your bladder wall can become irritated (usually due to ingesting a trigger food or beverage, or being too dehydrated). You’ll know if this is the case because your bladder will burn or feel sharp up inside.  Drink a glass of water, eat bladder-calming foods like blueberries or pears, and take medication if necessary.


  1. 2.  If your urethra or your vagina is irritated, you could be experiencing a flare up of the pelvic floor muscles.  This is oftentimes a result of intercourse but has been reported from sitting too long.  Using an ice pack on the urethra and vaginal area for 15-20 minutes may help calm things down a bit (don’t forget to lay down a barrier like a thin towel).


  1. 3. If your bladder is very sore and achy you are probably experiencing a bladder muscle spasm.  The spasms can make your entire pelvic floor ache.  Using a heating pad over the bladder area will help calm down muscles.  You could even try an Epsom salt soak.



Thank you to WellnessMama for some helpful tips for IC Flare Ups.  https://wellnessmama.com/60032/interstitial-cystitis-remedies/


Posted in Bladder, Interstitial Cystitis, Pain/Chronic Pain, Painful Intercourse, Pelvic Floor Muscles, Symptoms, Treatments

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