Lack of sleep could cause a number of health issues. But did you know that frequent nighttime urination could also speed up the internal aging process? Individuals with bladder problems who frequently rise at night to visit the bathroom may be compromising their health and aging more quickly.
Sleep and Early Aging
Recent research has found that failure to get the required 7 to 8 hours of sleep a night may actually age you prematurely. A University of Chicago Medical Center study has stated that lack of sleep can affect metabolism and speed up the aging process. Metabolic and endocrine changes from lack of sleep can mimic many of the signs of aging.
In the study, those who reduced length of sleep from 8 hours to 4 hours each night had striking changes that resembled the effects of advanced age. It only took a week for these changes to present themselves. Furthermore, lack of sleep could increase the onset of traditional age-related problems, such as memory loss, blood pressure issue and blood sugar levels.
How Much Sleep Do You Need?
Although there is no “magic number” in terms of the amount of sleep needed, and sleep is largely an individual need, the average person feels refreshed and can function properly on 6 to 8 hours of sleep a night. There is strong evidence that shortening of sleep or disruption of the sleep process affects alertness, can compromise mood, and can result in injury or death. Individuals who experience frequent nighttime urination find their sleep is hampered by rising to visit the bathroom several times a night, resulting in both less sleep AND interrupted deep sleep. Deep sleep is known to be restorative to the body and mind.
Why Am I Urinating So Much at Night?
There could be a number of reasons behind frequent nighttime urination. One of the most obvious is simply drinking too much before retiring for the night. This may be easily remedied by reducing the consumption of fluids after a certain time at night.
Certain types of beverages, particularly those that are carbonated or caffeinated, may cause the need to urinate more frequently as well. Caffeinated beverages and others, such as alcohol, are known as diuretics, or something that causes an increased passage of urine. Even seemingly healthy drinks, such as cranberry juice or tea can be diuretics as well. Individuals may want to consider limiting consumption of these beverages later in the evening as well.
Frequent nighttime urination may be a result of pregnancy and can occur during the day or night. An enlarged prostate due to aging in men may contribute to frequent urination at nighttime as well. Stress and worry may also be contributing factors to frequent urination problems – day or night.
Get Help for Nighttime Urination Issues
Talking with a doctor may unearth different techniques to help frequent urination. These can include re-training the bladder to hold urine longer; pelvic floor muscle exercises to strengthen the area and help hold in urine; targeted medications or nutritional supplements that may be effective in regain bladder control and helping regain bladder control.
Those who are experiencing frequent nighttime urination may want to keep a journal to record their issues and their bathroom visit frequency. This can help a healthcare provider have a better idea of the nature of the issues. You may also want to make a list of questions to ask a doctor to get a better idea of addressing the urination issues. Some ideas include:
Could medications I’m taking be contributing to my overactive bladder at night?
What exercises can I do to strengthen pelvic floor muscles?
What tests do you advise to determine if frequent nighttime urination may be a sign of a more serious health problem?
Are there nutritional or herbal supplement alternatives for this issue?
What are the foods and beverages I should avoid to help combat the problem?
Frequent nighttime urination is often thought of as a consequence of natural aging, but lack of sleep from rising in the night to visit the bathroom may actually be speeding up the aging process and greatly impacting health. Urologists may suggest exercise, a healthy diet, limiting nighttime beverages, and medical tests to rule out other causes as part of a regimen for handling this condition.
To your health.