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Bladder retention or urinary retention occurs when the bladder does not empty itself completely. It can happen suddenly or be a chronic condition. Some causes of bladder retention include strictures or scarring of the urethra from infection or injury, nerve or muscle problems in the bladder, prostate cancer, side effect of medication, and urinary tract stones. Treatment of the underlying cause of bladder retention is important because large amounts of urine held in the bladder can lead to kidney damage, according to the University of Rochester Medical Center. Some natural remedies may help with symptoms of bladder retention or with the underlying cause.


Dandelion is a perennial herb typically found growing wild in fields and pastures. Native American Indians used dandelion root to treat kidney disease, heartburn, and stomach upset, according to U.S. National Library of Medicine. Dandelion has anti-inflammatory properties and is frequently used as a diuretic to increase urine output, helping with bladder inflammation and urine retention.


Nettle is an herb that is used for cystitis (inflammation of the bladder) and has restorative properties to help heal the bladder and kidney, and is frequently used as a diuretic, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center. It is commonly used as a tea, to be consumed two to three times per day. This herb can interact with supplements and medications, so it is wise to talk with your physician before drinking for bladder problems.

Saw Palmetto

Saw palmetto is an herb traditionally used in Europe to treat prostate enlargement, according to the U.S. National Library of Medicine. It has anti-inflammatory properties, as well as preventing the conversion of testosterone to dihydrotestosterone, which ultimately can help with bladder retention caused by an enlarged prostate. If your prostate is enlarged, talk to your physician to find out what is medically wrong with it.


Sarsaparilla is a homeopathic remedy that is useful in treating cystitis (inflammation of the bladder), according to UCSD Healthwise Knowledgebase. It is helpful in treating the pain associated when urinary stones are forming in decreasing inflammation and as a pain reliever, especially when pain or burning is felt at the end of urination. Medical treatment should be sought if you have urinary stones.

Indian licorice

Indian licorice extract are a natural substitute for typical antibiotics used to treat cystitis or inflammation of the bladder, according to Mamaherb.com. It can help with bladder retention caused by inflammation or infection with its natural antimicrobial properties. A suggested use consists of crushing up 50 mg of Indian licorice root into a paste, boiling it in a cup of water for 30 minutes, straining and drinking three times per week.