Menopause is a stage of life accompanied by many changes in our minds, routines, and body. That is why it is normal for discomfort or symptoms of menopause, such as nocturia, to appear. Do you know what it is, or has it happened to you?
Nocturia is the increased need to urinate at night, and it can happen during menopause for several reasons (Pauwaert, 2021):
- During menopause, several hormonal alterations occur, such as the decrease in oestrogen.
- This causes anatomical changes such as a reduction in the size of the bladder, forcing less urinary retention.
- In addition, there is an increase in thirst and water intake, which increases urine output.
- Other possible causes include chronic diseases such as diabetes mellitus or high blood pressure.
Although this discomfort does not happen to all women during menopause, it is essential to know what it is and why it can occur.
The main symptom of nocturia is an increase in urinary frequency at night, which in turn can be accompanied by changes in the way you urinate or other symptoms, such as (Leslie, 2022):
- Repeated need to urinate that disrupts sleep.
- Frequent urination, but in small quantities.
- Urinary urgency.
- Sensation of incomplete emptying.
- Weak or intermittent urinary stream.
- Need for an effort to start or maintain the urinary stream.
How does nocturia affect women’s quality of life?
One of the critical issues with this condition, whether in menopause or at any other time in a woman’s life, is that it can deeply affect the quantity and quality of sleep (Bliwise, 2019).
Sleep disturbances are up to 4 times more common than pain (Bliwise, 2019). Additionally, when sleep is disturbed, your overall quality of life can be significantly impacted (Bliwise, 2019). For this reason, it is essential to treat the increase of urinary frequency during menopause and its associated causes.
How to treat this menopause symptom
To treat this common menopause symptom, first of all, it is necessary to identify the cause. If it is due to diabetes insipidus, that primary cause must be treated. If it is happening due to the hormonal alterations of menopause, there are hormonal therapies that can help correct it (Pauwaert, 2021).
How is nocturia prevented?
Some healthy habits and lifestyle changes can be made to prevent and treat increased urinary frequency to a certain extent. These are (LeWine, 2020; Pauwaert, 2021):
- Stay hydrated during the day, but reduce your fluid intake at least a few hours before bedtime.
- Empty your bladder just before going to bed.
- Caffeinated drinks can increase the desire to go to the bathroom. Avoid these drinks at night.
- Drinking alcohol at night can also increase urinary frequency.
- Try to reduce the consumption of salt in drinks and food.
- Maintain a good level of physical activity and try to lose weight if necessary.
Now that you know what nocturia is, don’t hesitate to apply our advice if you need it and always seek the help of a healthcare professional for more detail and support.
Bliwise, D. L., Wagg, A., & Sand, P. K. (2019). Nocturia: A Highly Prevalent Disorder with Multifaceted Consequences. Urology. doi:10.1016/j.urology.2019.07.005
Leslie, S. W., Sajjad, H., & Singh, S. (2022). Nocturia. En StatPearls. StatPearls Publishing. Retrieved from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK518987/
LeWine, H. (2020). Full bladder wakes 2 in 3 women at night. Harvard Health. Retrieved from: https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/full-bladder-wakes-2-3-women-night-201412127585
Pauwaert, K., Goessaert, A.-S., Ghijselings, L., Monaghan, T. F., Depypere, H., & Everaert, K. (2021). Nocturia through the menopausal transition and beyond: a narrative review. International Urogynecology Journal, 32(5), 1097–1106. doi:10.1007/s00192-020-04640-7