Many bladder problems are regarded as insignificant or even normal. Those suffering from bladder disorders are often not aware of available treatments that can help provide relief. One of the common bladder conditions that often goes under the radar is nocturia. The truth is, nocturia affects millions of Americans of all ages and is characterized by the persistent need to urinate during the night. In fact, according to a poll conducted by the National Sleep Foundation, nocturia is consistently one of the most commonly reported causes of sleep disruptions, especially in older adults. To help provide some more information about this common condition, we’re taking the time to explain everything you need to know about nocturia.
What is Nocturia?
Nocturia is a symptom of other urinary and bladder conditions, but it is not itself a disease. Nocturia is defined as having to wake up multiple times in the night to urinate. While some people don’t have an issue with waking up at night, it can become more of a problem when the person has trouble getting back to sleep or waking up two or more times in the night to use the bathroom. Long-term effects of nocturia can lead to excessive daytime sleepiness and may contribute to the onset of other medical conditions. After all, sleep is one of the most fundamental aspects of our overall health, so it’s important to take steps to reduce nocturia, especially if it impairs your quality of life.
What Causes Nocturia?
As we previously mentioned, one of the most important things to know about nocturia is that it is a symptom of a more significant condition. Some of the common causes of nocturia include overactive bladder (OAB) or enlarged prostate. One of the largest contributing causes of nocturia is nocturnal polyuria, a condition in which the body processes excess urine at night. Other causes include urinary tract infections (UTI) and problems with kidney function. A urologist can help determine the best treatment plan for nocturia, depending on what is causing this symptom.
What are the Impacts of Nocturia?
The importance of treating nocturia is two-fold: first, nocturia is generally caused by a condition that requires treatment, and second, untreated nocturia can lead to greater health issues down the line. For those that struggle to fall back asleep after using the bathroom, nocturia can lead to fragmented sleep and less time spent reaping the benefits of restorative REM sleep. Over time, this can lead to excessive daytime sleepiness that can affect your mood, concentration, and even your ability to perform daily activities, like driving a car. Missing out on sleep can severely impact your mental and physical wellness, as well as put you at a higher risk of developing medical conditions. From an increased likelihood of a dangerous fall to developing depression, untreated nocturia can have significant consequences.
How To Treat Nocturia
Identifying the root cause of your nocturia with a medical professional can help put on the right treatment plan. Still, there are also step you can take individually to start decreasing your nocturia symptoms. Lifestyle changes, including drinking fewer fluids before bed, decreasing alcohol and caffeine consumption, daily exercise, and limiting the use of electronics before bed, can all help you achieve better sleep. If these at-home changes do not yield results, there are medications and other treatments available. Schedule an appointment with a specialist at Alliance Urology to find out which treatments can help.
Make an Appointment
To diagnose and treat any common problem related to the bladder or genitourinary system, schedule an appointment with one of our providers. Our team has years of experience treating issues pertaining to the urinary tract and bladder. Alliance Urology Specialists can also explain what you need to know about nocturia and provide comprehensive treatment options. For questions and inquiries, please call our office in Greensboro at (336) 274-1114.