If you have frequent urination at night, also known as nocturia, you’re probably not getting enough restful sleep, which makes you cranky and frustrated with your body. Here’s how to control your overactive bladder naturally.
What is nocturia?
You are not alone if you find yourself getting up more than once during the six-to-eight-hour period when you should be sleeping. According to the Urology Care Foundation, one in every three adults over the age of 30 has nocturia (an excessive need to urinate at night). It’s possible that your body produces too much urine, that your bladder can’t hold it for long periods of time, or that it’s a combination of the two.
Researchers believe that nocturia has a significant impact on people’s overall health and well-being. It contributes to fatigue, memory problems, depression, and anxiety, as well as an increased risk of heart disease, gastrointestinal distress, and falls. Sleep is intertwined with everything, and our bodies suffer without it.
What causes nocturia?
The presence of nocturia is affected by a variety of lifestyle factors, medical conditions, and medications. Aging is one of the most common. That’s because as we get older, our bodies produce less of the hormone that tells our kidneys to take it easy while we’re sleeping. Furthermore, as we age, the bladder loses its elasticity, making it unable to hold as much urine as it once did. The end result? I frequently go to the bathroom in the middle of the night.
In older men, nocturia may be caused by an enlarged prostate. This happens because the bladder is unable to completely empty, resulting in more trips to the toilet around the clock. Women who have had children may have weaker pelvic floor muscles if they have not worked on them. Furthermore, women who have gone through menopause have lower estrogen production, which can affect the urinary tract.
More causes for nocturia
Make an appointment with your doctor right away if you suspect you have a serious medical condition. Here are some other common causes of nighttime urination:
- Heart issues
- Liver failure
- Overactive bladder
- Prostate tumor
- Interstitial cystitis
Keep a diary next to your bed and record how frequently you use the bathroom so you can report back to your doctor. You can also log every trip to the bathroom using the BladderTrakHer web app.
In the meantime, here are some…
Tips for dealing with nocturia:
Drink less before going to bed.
Are you drinking several cups of tea before going to bed? Have you had a few too many glasses of wine in your PJs? Before you do anything else, experiment with changing the amount of liquid you drink before bed to see if you can effectively reduce nighttime urination. You might get immediate relief! Also, stay away from caffeine in the afternoon and alcohol in the evening, as both will mess up your natural urination schedule.
Having said that, it’s critical not to drastically reduce your overall fluid intake. This may appear to be a simple way to stop nighttime peeing, but it could have negative health consequences, such as a urinary tract infection. In that context…
Check in with your urinary tract
When you have the early stages of a urinary tract infection (UTI), you may feel the need to “go” more frequently than usual, particularly at night. Stay hydrated every day to avoid a full-blown infection, modify your diet to include probiotics, and always pee after sex. If your nighttime urination is accompanied by stomach pain, a fever, and blood in your urine, you may have an infection. If this is the case, see a doctor as soon as possible to confirm your diagnosis.
Discuss your medications with your doctor.
Nocturia is a common side effect of many medications. If you have heart failure, your doctor may have prescribed a diuretic to treat the edema (fluid buildup) in your lower extremities. Unfortunately, you may need to pee more frequently at night. Consult your doctor about changing your medication or taking it earlier in the day.
Soothe your sleep disorder
It’s possible that you’re waking up because of something other than a desire to pee. Do you suffer from chronic pain? What is sleep apnea? Have you recently experienced anxiety or depression? All of these factors can disrupt your normal sleeping pattern, keeping you awake at odd hours of the night. Naturally, consult with a physician you trust about your sleep disorder. You might find that your peeing problem disappears as well.
Consume a handful of raisins
Although the evidence is purely anecdotal, many nocturia sufferers have reported positive results from eating a handful of raisins before bed. To test whether this works for you, eat 1/4 cup of raisins (about 30) before going to bed. Experiment with this for a few nights in a row to see if it makes a difference. Even if it’s just a placebo effect, it works for some people!
Avoid ‘irritating’ foods and beverages.
Several foods and beverages have been shown to aggravate bladder irritation. Stop eating or drinking any of these and see if your nocturia improves:
- Coffee and tea
- Prepared foods
- Salsa, tomato sauce, and tomatoes ( processed foods )
- Hot sauce, chili peppers, wasabi, or other spicy ingredients
- Orange and grapefruit juices are examples of acidic fruit juices.
Check out the Cleveland Clinic’s complete list of foods to avoid.
Improve your pelvic floor strength.
Strengthening your pelvic floor muscles, which support a woman’s uterus, bladder, small intestine, and rectum, is always a good idea. Strong pelvic floor muscles in men support the bladder and urethra, aiding in the prevention of incontinence and other problems.
So, what is the answer for both men and women? Kegel workouts! Daily kegel exercises have been shown in studies to significantly strengthen pelvic floor muscles, thereby addressing many of the most serious problems associated with urinary issues.
To begin with, identify the muscle group by stopping the flow of urine. Hold for five seconds before resuming peeing. Once you’ve mastered the right muscles, lie down on your back in a comfortable position. Tighten the pelvic floor muscles for five seconds, then relax them for five seconds. Perform the exercise four to five times in a row, several times per week. Take care not to overextend your bladder and irritate it further. You should have a stronger pelvic floor in a few weeks, especially if you try this next tip:
One of its many benefits is yoga exercises that strengthen the pelvic floor. Go to your local yoga studio or look up “yoga and pelvic floor” exercises on YouTube. Some of the best pelvic postures include:
- Locust pose
- Warrior II pose
- Bridge pose
- Chair pose
- Child’s pose
Thanks for getting to the bottom of this article, but before you leave, I have another message for both men and women:
Women, take note: this upper body stretch will help you stop “pee leaks.”
You’re supposed to do kegels if you want to stop bladder leakage and tighten your pelvic floor, right? Well…
That is incorrect. However, there is an UPPER BODY stretch that strengthens your pelvic floor and prevents “pee leaks”…
This unusual upper body stretch PREVENTS bladder leakage.
Attention Men: try THIS if you have an enlarged SWOLLEN prostate:
Just a handful of doctors knew this until recently:
Every man over 40 suffering from prostate problems has this hidden toxin “leaking” inside their bodies…
And not only does it swell the prostate, giving you the nagging sensation that you have to pee immediately…
But could also lead to other incurable complications!