When you wake up 2 or more times a night to urinate, you may have nocturia

It’s very common and tends to happen more as people age. In fact, it’s estimated that nearly 1 in 5 adults over the age of 20 wake up to go to the bathroom at least twice a night.

However, nocturia isn’t normal and may require treatment.

What causes nocturia?

There are multiple factors that can cause nocturia. Here are a few of the most common:

Behavior
Drinking too much water, caffeine, or alcohol before bed.

Nocturnal polyuria
When your body produces too much urine at night.

Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH)
A larger than normal prostate.

Overactive bladder (OAB)
A problem with bladder function that causes the sudden need to urinate.

Your doctor may have already prescribed medicine and spoken to you about the need to urinate at night. However, those medicines may not be treating the source of nocturia. Ask your doctor about nocturia as a separate condition.

Does it matter that I wake up frequently?

Many people see nocturia as a normal part of aging or a side effect of other conditions and, consequently, don’t seek treatment. However, nocturia may have long-term effects that can have a huge impact on their lives.

Nocturia impacts sleep

Insufficient sleep and sleep disruption can lead to obesity, cardiovascular disease, cognitive impairment, and depression.

Nocturia impacts health

Nocturia has been shown to impair functioning, productivity, and overall health, and it can lead to an increased likelihood of falls and fractures.

Nocturia impacts quality of life

Patients with nocturia report lower work productivity and more sick leave than people without the condition.

Nocturia may impact your partner

When people with nocturia wake up, they often wake up their partner, reducing the quality of their sleep, too.

Treating nocturia

The first line of defense against nocturia?
A few simple lifestyle changes.

Your doctor may recommend you drink less water, caffeine, or alcohol before bed to see if the impact of nocturia is reduced.

If you continue to wake up at night despite these changes, treatment is available.

If you’ve been diagnosed with BPH or OAB, your doctor may already have prescribed medicine. However, these medications work in the prostate or bladder and may not help with nocturia. Ask your doctor about treating nocturia directly.

Talking to your doctor is the first step to fewer sleep interruptions.

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